Author: Property Soul

Implications behind the improved URA Property Price Index

If you have a good memory, you may still recall that I have written to The Straits Times Forum in December last year on “Public deserves reliable, consistent data”. In URA’s reply, they mentioned about working towards making improvements to the property market data and will release the nett prices of individual units sold by developers on their website in the first half of 2015. On April Fool’s Day, URA finally announced that they have improved the computation methodology of their PPI (Property Price Index) to better reflect price changes in private residential market. This is first reflected in...

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Do property prices always recover to go up higher?

Recently, there are reports on units in high-end condominium projects being sold at a big loss. As property buyers, we hear too often from developers and property agents that property prices will always go up in the long run. Does the property market always manage to recover, with prices going higher than the previous peak? Is it true that any time is a good time to buy? Below is an abstract from my book No B.S. Guide to Property Investment about one of my real-life property stories and the lessons learned. In 2003, I bought a unit in a...

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Do home buyers know what they are buying?

Money can buy you a new apartment or a big house. But it can’t buy you discernment and wisdom. Being a property enthusiast, I have stepped into a hundred showflats and gone to hundreds of flat/house viewings. I am often surprised by all the wrong types of landed houses, private projects and condominium units that home owners bought. Trust me, all of them have nothing to do with budget: Some are related to Feng Shui. Many can be screened from experience. Most are just common sense. You may argue that these home owners are westernized or are foreigners. They...

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A ‘single’ property owner’s wishlist for Singapore Budget

All taxpayers are not created equal. In every year’s Singapore Budget or National Day Rally, the media will feature a low-income or middle-class family, highlighting ‘what he and his family will get’ or ‘how she and her family will be benefited’. But no one bothers to interview singles like us. Because we don’t get anything anyway. Why do they have to penalize singles when it comes to income tax? We are not eligible for the spouse and parent tax reliefs, but get restrictions instead when buying HDB flats. We don’t take any cash bonus, baby gift, marriage benefit, childcare...

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The property market in the Year of the Goat

As we usher in the lunar new year, property enthusiasts are trying to peep into the crystal ball to see how the market will fare this year. Below are what PropertySoul.com sees in the Singapore property scene in the Year of the Goat (or Sheep). (Disclaimer: I have no vested interest in any property-related company, or influence from any individual in the real estate industry.) 1. As gentle as a lamb According to Chinese feng shui masters, 2015 is the Year of the Wood Goat that carries a strong earth element. Wood on dry earth with the absence of...

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How to Buy Good Quality Properties 1-Day Workshop

How to Buy Good Quality Properties 1-Day Workshop A workshop by Property Club Singapore Synopsis Do you know how to choose the best unit in a property development and the best house in the street? Do you know if you want to lease or sell your properties faster and at a rate higher than the competition, the project, direction, facing, layout, fengshui, etc. can make all the difference? Unfortunately, many property buyers have no clue. Are you one of them? The trainer will share with you how to pick good quality properties from her knowledge and experience accumulated after...

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When property hotspots become ghost towns

The original meaning of ghost town refers to a village or a city that has once been populated but is abandoned due to bad economy, high unemployment, or natural or human-caused disasters. In recent years, the media have given ghost town a new definition: a new city that has been built and ready for resident occupation but no one moves in. It has been abandoned even before any habitation. Beihu Gulf Economic Zone the next hotspot? The story below is from a new documentary about urbanization in China. In the northern part of Guangxi province, there is a new...

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Three tips to master the art of asking for property advice

At the Invest Carnival ‘Meet The Investment Bloggers’ session held last Sunday, there was a question for me from the audience during panel discussion. Someone asked what I do with my money after selling four properties. It sounds like how the media interview the lucky winners after they win the lottery or the Changi Millionaire contest. Unlike a windfall from hitting a jackpot, there is no excitement at all. Like what some investors say, you feel ten times more excited the moment you find and secure a good deal compared with the moment you profit from it. I didn’t...

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The secret of profiting from old houses

The following is an abstract from my book No B.S. Guide to Property Investment, currently in its third print after it was first published nine months ago. How a property plastic surgeon makes his fortune My neighbor Sam runs his own family business that specializes in additions and alterations work for old houses. Apart from his business, Sam also has a flair for property investment. Once he shared with me his secret of making money from properties. “Everyone knows that I am a contractor. But few know that I am also a plastic surgeon.” He continued, “And I am...

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The stick behind the dangling carrot

More than 52,000 turned up for the four-day Singapore Motorshow last week. It was not surprising given Singapore’s car-worshipping culture. Be the first to see the latest car models Two weeks ago I received an email invitation from my car manufacturer. The marketing message read like this: (Car company) invites you to the Singapore Motorshow from 16 to 18 January. Be the first to discover the most exciting cars of 2015 … This event is for you and one guest. I told hubby about this and he immediately asked me to get two free tickets. However, when I logged...

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Meet the investment bloggers at INVEST Carnival 2015

Come and meet Singapore’s popular investment bloggers (including me!) at the coming INVEST Carnival. Event : INVEST Carnival 2015 Organizer : ShareInvestor – a subsidiary of SPH Date : 1 February 2015 (Sunday) Time : 2.45 – 4.00 p.m. Venue: Singapore Expo Hall 6B Seminar Room 2 Host : Maddy Barber Bloggers: Propertysoul, BigFatPulse, drwealth, cheerfulegg URL : http://investcarnival.com/ Free registration now opens. Sign up today and see you...

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Buy, Fix and Profit from Old Houses/Apartments

Buy, Fix and Profit from Old Houses/Apartments A strategy sharing talk by Property Club Singapore Event details Date : February 8, 2015 (Sun) Time : 2.30 – 5 p.m. Venue: National Library Agenda 1. How to identify opportunities under the URA Master Plan 2. Tips of looking for gems in rundown houses with potential for revamp/rebuild 3. Deciding between tear & rebuild versus A&A 4. Project management: the Dos and Don’ts 5. Budgeting different costs in a “buy and fix” project 6. How to avoid landmines when buying old apartments/houses 7. Maximizing the value of your property with smart...

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Trust yourself you can create wealth in property

I received a few messages from readers of my blog which read something like this: I like properties and I want to learn everything about it. My dream is to earn passive income from property investment. I hope to be financially free one day … But I am only a 20-something guy who just started working a few years back. I live on a humble four-figure salary every month. I don’t have rich parents. I don’t even own an HDB flat … Do you think I will ever be able to realize my property dream? Don’t judge a book...

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Six qualities that make women great property investors

I was looking through the member list of Property Club Singapore when I noticed that only one-fifth of the members are ladies. It shouldn’t be surprising, given that those who are interested in investment are mostly guys. You should call yourself lucky if you attend a stock investing course and there is a lady sitting next to you. And there is a high chance that she is accompanying her husband there. Singapore women not into investment? If you start a conversation about stock or property with Hong Kong or Shanghai girls, there is a high chance that they will...

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Three property investment mistakes you should avoid in 2015

No matter what your new year resolutions are, it’s time you said goodbye to your bad habits in property investment. If you are buying a private home in 2015, avoid making these three common mistakes. Mistake #1: Rush in and get burnt. According to URA, there are 88,627 uncompleted private residential units (including ECs) in the pipeline. As at 3rd Quarter 2014, 28,120 units (excluding ECs) are launched but remain unsold. For public flats, HDB will launch another 16,900 BTO flats this year. Do the math. Ninety percent of resident households already own their homes. Population growth in Singapore...

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