The upcoming Thomson-East Coast Line (TEL) will ease transport woes for many thousands of commuters and help send home prices north, consultants said.
The 13km stretch could transform the area’s prospects overnight by bringing the central business district and other parts of the island within striking distance.
“For a long time, residents in the East Coast have been relying on buses or private transport,” noted OrangeTee research head Christine Li in a report yesterday.
“With better accessibility, existing and future properties in the area will benefit positively in the long run.”
The line is set to pass through Tanjong Rhu, Katong Park, Amber, Marine Parade, Marine Terrace, Siglap, Bayshore, Bedok South and Sungei Bedok, according to a Land Transport Authority announcement last week.
It will significantly cut travelling time to the central city and the northern part of Singapore.
A resident going from Marine Parade to Shenton Way will halve his journey time from 40 to 20 minutes, for example.
Colliers International research and advisory director Chia Siew Chuin said private residential areas from Tanjong Rhu through to Marine Parade and the boutique developments in Siglap and Bayshore will enjoy the most accessibility as they do not have MRT access now.
“Moving further east to Bedok South, the impact could be less, as residents there have had some access to the Bedok and Tanah Merah MRT stations,” she added.
Ms Li said 99-year leasehold condominiums such as Casuarina Cove, Tanjong Ria Condominium and Water Place in Tanjong Rhu could be among the winners, while the freehold Meyer Residence and The Belvedere in Katong Park are near enough to benefit as well. At Amber Road, projects that may enjoy some lift are mostly small to medium-sized freehold apartments like Aalto, Amber Point and King’s Mansion, she added.
Condominiums at Marine Parade like Cote D’Azur, The Palladium and The Seaview could enjoy price gains as could projects in Siglap and Bayshore such as Lagoon View, Laguna Park, Elliot at the East Coast, Bayshore Park, The Bayshore and Costa Del Sol.
Median prices of non-landed properties near the stations ranges from $905 at Sungei Bedok to $1,547 at Katong Park, noted SLP International research head Nicholas Mak.
He estimated that some property owners may increase their asking prices by 5 to 10 per cent over the next few months – as seen when the stations were announced for the North-East Line (NEL).
“People just wanted to capitalise on the news and they knew that their property would eventually appreciate. Granted, that was when the market was more buoyant,” Mr Mak added.
But the full benefits would only be reaped when the line nears completion, he added, suggesting that the sweet spot would be a 24-month period, one year before and one after the service gets going. Mr Mak, who based his estimates on when the NEL came into operation, believes there could be a 10 to 12 per cent rise in prices over that two-year period.
Some upcoming projects in the area include CapitaLand’s 124-unit Marine Blue at Marine Parade Road, which has not yet been launched, and 109-unit Amber Skye at Amber Road, said R’ST Research director Ong Kah Seng.
Amber Skye, a joint venture between China Sonangol Land and OKP Land, had launched 28 units as at the end of last month, with five selling.
Mr Ong said the MRT stations would help sales move faster but would probably not result in developers raising their selling prices.
“If developers peg prices competitively to attract buyers, especially investors, project sales will move faster. A convenient location will make it easier for investors or landlords to rent out their property.”
But should the total debt servicing ratio (TDSR) framework stick around, projects priced at $1,400 to $2,000 psf would not have much interest as that is the price range where buyers still need a loan – a far harder task these days, he added.