Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Don't have a naked position in the property market!

After Round 7 was introduced, i received even better offers from the agent of D'Leedon. The developer is offering up to 10% and 15% "Chinese New Year" discount on the units. No more funny "tiered" discounts which i first mentioned in my blog post on 3 Jan 2013.

A 3 bedroom unit on #22-17 (1227 square foot) is now going for $1,786,190. The developer has definitely become very 'sincere' overnight in cutting prices to move units.

I had a blog post in September where i mentioned not to sell your flat if you can and that a close relative of mine has sold his flat in anticipation of a drop in price. Well, as an update, this relative of mine couldn't take it any more as he see the prices moving away and finally bought a studio unit (635 square foot) for $1.288m at D'Leedon on 29 December 2012 only to see developer cutting prices two weeks later when Round 7 was enforced. 

I think the simple takeaway is this: Don't have a naked position in the property market.

There is a Chinese saying "衣食住行", meaning that a roof over your head (a place to stay) besides clothing and food is a basic necessity. I guess once you loses your roof, you probably will lose your head as well and start thinking and behaving irrationally. 

I had a reunion dinner with my ex-colleagues two Fridays ago where one of them thanked me for advising her not to sell her executive condo in 2010. She had wanted to cash out because she thought the prices was high and wanted to rent a place near a good primary school for her eldest son. She is also expecting a price correction. I remembered telling her back then, "don't do it because you only have one property and you can never catch the top and the bottom". With the benefit of hindsight, if she has sold in 2010, she will probably be paying rental for 2 years and suffer the heartache of seeing the prices of her executive condo setting new records in 2012.  

After thanking me, she went on to say, "well, i have just sold my condo at record price in December, what would you advise me to do next?" She has just sold her executive condo in Chua Chu Kang area where she has stayed for the last 13 years. I think she will probably get back around $1.2m in proceeds and that it has been fully paid for. 

She then asked me "Should i....

(1) Rent a place and wait for prices to drop or
(2) Buy 2 new properties with the cash received or 
(3) Buy one property now and buy another one a few years later.

What would you advise her? I will leave that for your thoughts. Feel free to comment, especially if you are thinking of taking a "naked" positing in the property market as well.  :) 

36 comments:

Allen Neo said...

2) buy 2 property to keep?

Mr. IPO said...

Hi Allen, will share my thoughts in another blog post. :)

Anonymous said...

more incline to option 3 considering today's market condition.

Alvin K said...

I fully agree not to stay in naked position. However, that doesn't mean to enter into position with local property. In near term, it may be wise to rent for maybe 1 year.

The cooling measures have just kicked in, and assuming no further global stimulus to kick in (surely govt will hit round 8 by then), the property prices in SG will 'cool' further with some 200,000 units TOPing over next few years.

Take part of the proceeds and invest in an overseas property, one that has transparency in govt policy and reasonable yield (e.g. London).
Rest of the proceeds can be invested in other assets which are more liquid, and provide steady income, e.g. REITS?

Mr. IPO said...

Alvin, the only caveat is that Overseas properties are subject to currency and potentially tax risks.

Alvin K said...

You're absolutely right. Currency risk is probably higher due to current stronger sgd. Tax risk also mean requiring a good understanding of the govt and it's policies.

financialray said...

I don't think she has much of a choice since she has only one property. Renting has never been my cup of tea. She cannot afford to buy 2 properties now with only 1.2 M unless she has savings of her own. I would suggest buy a residential near her son's school and plan to stay there for about 5 years. Keep the spare cash and wait for the perfect storm.

Anonymous said...

Option 1, which I am going for, since I feel the potential for my 30 year old hdb is already at it's max and prices will fall within the next 2 years.

Except that I will be renting a tiny apartment in a country which has 4 seasons :) A small price to pay, comfort wise. And I still have a tiny profit leftover from the sale for when prices fall. To sell and rent in Singapore? No. But to use a portion of my proceeds for a different lifestyle and cultural experience, hell yeh.

BTW, will be happy to hear your thoughts about investing in Iskandar, which seems to be the rage these days, if you are so inclined.

Mr. IPO said...

Wow where are you going to rent? How much it cost? :)

Anonymous said...

Rental would be below $1000 a month for something the size of a 2 room flat. Tiny, but still much cheaper than something similar in Singapore :)

Mr. IPO said...

Which country will that be with 4 seasons. I also want to go next time. Haha. Enjoy :)

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