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  • Writer's pictureVivian Chong

Tampines Condos That May Be Worth More Than You Think In 2024

Updated: 16 hours ago


Tampines Condos That May Be Worth More Than You Think In 2024


In the past few years, I have to admit that Treasure at Tampines has managed to steal the limelight: most of us have been so distracted by this massive project, that we’re only now starting to realise how strong the resale demand has been in the area.


Case in point, these six Tampines-area resale condos, which have been quietly delivering outstanding performance, behind the distracting dazzle of the new launch market (or perhaps because of it, given new launch prices today):



Outstanding performers in the Tampines region


new launch condo prices
Average new launch condo prices over the past 5 years. (Source: EdgeProp)

At the time I’m writing this (mid-June 2024), new launch condo prices across Singapore are averaging about $2,200+ psf. If we look at prices over a five-year period, this is roughly a 20.8% increase - a huge jump for such a short time.


There are many reasons for this, from the housing shortage that resulted during Covid, to land prices and development charges for property builders; but suffice it to stay that new launches are a tough stretch for many buyers right now. 


At around $2,200 psf, the typical family-sized condo unit  - a three-bedder, or around 1,000 sq. ft. - would be around $2.2 million. Even for someone who has an HDB flat to upgrade from, this is an unpalatable sum; especially as home loan interest rates are higher than they were in 2020


This may account for more buyers looking toward the resale condo market, and the good performance we’re seeing in resale projects


Some good examples of this can be found in Tampines, which continues to be a developing regional hub in the east. It may also be that Treasure at Tampines was the last affordable new launch in this area (perhaps in the east as a whole), but it’s now completed and sold; so buyers eager to live in Tampines or nearby are looking more into resale options. 


Whatever the reasons, this bodes well for sellers here: Tampines condo owners may be one of the privileged few who are positioned to afford a replacement property or an upgrade, in spite of the pricier 2024 market.


Check out the top performing condos in Tampines so far!



Top Performing Condos In Tampines


1. Citylife @ Tampines (EC)


condominium
Citylife @ Tampines is an Executive Condo (EC) that reaches MOP in 2021.

Citylife is a 514-unit EC, which was completed in 2016, and was out of its Minimum Occupancy Period (MOP) back in ‘21. Ever since entering the resale market, Citylife has had a perfect track record of 143 profitable transactions, with zero losses. 


Two of its most recent notable transactions occurred just a month prior to this article (May 2024).


The first was for a 1,324 sq. ft unit on the 9th floor, which sold for a gross profit of $815,000, at an annualised gain of about 5.1%.


The second transaction, a 1,424 sq. ft. unit on the 10th floor, sold for a gross profit of $820,000, or an annualised gain of about 4.7%.


Part of the reason for the high returns is simply Citylife’s EC status: an EC starts at a lower price point (a mere $812 psf for Citylife’s earliest sales in December 2012), and has a lot of room for appreciation. 


The other reason is that, while most ECs are quite far from the MRT station, Citylife is rather close to Tampines MRT. Bus 27, just outside the condo, takes you to the MRT and to Tampines Hub in just a few minutes. Or if you want, you can also walk to Tampines MRT on foot via Tampines Concourse.


It’s also nice that Sun Plaza Park and Tampines Eco Green are just across the road from this project, which makes for a nice greenery view as well as a place for family hangouts. This is a good location for those who want to live near Tampines Hub, but not directly in the noise and traffic coming from its malls and offices.



2. The Tampines Trilliant (EC)

east condominium
The Tampines Trilliant is an Executive Condo (EC) that reaches MOP in 2020.

It’s no real surprise that Trilliant is a good performer since this project is a benchmark; most ECs near Tampines will be compared to Trilliant, when you start asking about price.


This 670 unit EC was completed in 2015, and came out of its Minimum Occupancy Period (MOP) in a rough year: 2020, when we soon ran into the Covid epidemic. Nonetheless, it’s still managed a perfect track record to date, with 234 profitable transactions and no losses. 


There were two hugely profitable transactions here just weeks ago, from the time I’m writing this.


On 13th June 2024, a 1,302 sq. ft. unit on 6th floor managed a gross profit of $878,000, or an annualised return of 5.4%.


The second transaction, a roughly similar-sized unit one floor lower, had transacted around a week before for a gross profit of $842,000, or an annualised gain of 5.2%. 


Trilliant is a neighbour to Citylife above, and shares the same advantage of being close to Tampines Hub and its MRT station, malls, offices, etc. It’s actually a little bit closer, and may shave off a minute or two on foot; but some buyers may prefer the slightly smaller Citylife, as the lower unit count might mean a bit more privacy. 


Either way, the owners of both are realising exceptionally strong gains, thanks to their low initial buying price (Trilliant was only around $803 psf during initial sales in 2012).



3. The Tapestry


tampines condominium
The Tapestry is a 861-unit condo that received TOP in 2021.

The Tapestry may have irked some of its initial buyers, as the developer dropped the price in later sales phases; I suspect this was on account of new cooling measures being rolled out from 2018 onward, which impacted initial sales.


From the graph below, we can see that Tapestry initially showed median developer prices of $1,408 psf, but this had declined to $1,283 psf. If this was indeed due to cooling measures and a subsequently softer market, then it may explain some of the high gains we’re seeing: those who purchased when the developer had dipped the price may be the ones seeing exceptional profits today. 


Tampines condo property
Median prices of Tapestry since launch in 2018. (Source: EdgeProp)

So to be fair, we’ll provide a caveat: it may not just be demand for the project that we’re seeing, but rather a group of buyers who purchased at the right time. 


Nonetheless, Tapestry is a large, 861-unit project that was finished in 2021; and so far its track record is almost flawless. It has 116 profitable transactions and just one losing transaction (and the one losing transaction was in 2020 during Covid, so I’m not sure it’s even fair to count that). 


A particularly notable transaction was on 27th March of this year, when someone managed a gross profit of $524,840 for a 1,173 sq.ft. unit on the 15th floor. This is impressive for a holding period of little of four years, making an annualised return of 7.6%. 


The location of this condo is deceptively good. On a map, it looks far from any MRT. But in reality, bus services like 293 provide access to Tampines MRT, along with the malls in Tampines Hub, in just a few minutes. And in return for this minor inconvenience, you get to be in one of the more serene parts of Tampines, with a waterfront view of Tampines quarry. For those who drive, the trip to Tampines Hub from here is often under 10 minutes, depending on traffic. 


The condo also has some rental potential, as it’s close to United World College



4. The Santorini


tampines condominium
The Santorini condo is a 597-units condo that were launched in 2014.

The Santorini is another condo that shows the importance of timing. This Mediterranean-themed condo launched at a bad time in 2014, when the introduction of the Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR) sent the market reeling. On top of that, there was a huge oversupply of condos at the time, so sales for Santorini were especially weak. So despite being a very high quality project, it wasn’t initially reflected in developer sales. 


Those who saw past the issues at the time, however, are being rewarded right now. Santorini saw a huge turnaround, once the market adapted to the cooling measures. This condo has 159 profitable transactions, with only eight losses - and five of those losses were in 2020, which was the peak of Covid. 


This is a good example of how to realise gains: when you can see that lower prices and buyer hesitation are due to issues like policy measures, rather than issues such as quality or location, you can swoop in when prices are low. 


A recent transaction on 10th May 2024 saw a gross profit of $525,888 (lucky number!) after a holding period of just over four years, making for an impressive annualised return of 9.6%. This was for a 1,130 sq. ft. unit on the 5th floor. 


This 597 unit condo is more accessible than it seems, with services like 298 linking it to Tampines MRT station and the accompanying hub. One notable quirk of the Santorini is that even its smaller shoebox and two-bedder units are selling quite well in 2024, which is unusual as larger units have been the trend in the past few years. 



5. The Alps


tampines condo
The Alps is one of the newest condo in Tampines with 626 units.

The Alps, named after the mountain range, is well differentiated from most condos. Apart from the multi-level terraces and cabin-like pavilions, some questioned if the HDB enclave across the road would affect the view (it doesn’t, as the Alps is mainly angled to take advantage of the view of Tampines Quarry). 


As it turns out, having the HDB enclave across the road is a huge amenity; from the Sheng Siong right there, to other heartland amenities like convenience stores and coffee shops. And while the Alps is not itself close to an MRT station, bus services like 69 will get you to Tampines Hub and its malls in a few minutes. 


The Alps is also one of the newer condos in the area (completed in 2019), so it has an age advantage over many older counterparts nearby. It’s got a perfect track record to date, with 148 profitable transactions and zero losses. One of its best performers this year was a 936 sq. ft. unit that sold on 14th March, with a gross profit of $334,000. This was just over a four-year holding period, making for an annualised return of around 7.8%. 


The Alps is a bit closer to United World College than The Tapestry and The Santorini, which may matter to expat tenants with children there. 



6. The Q Bay Residences


tampines condominium
The Q Bay Residences boost 7 pools and 2 tennis courts, which is rare in today's market.

This 630 unit condo has one of the best unimpeded views of Tampines Quarry, and is also known for having dual-key units (landlords, or people living with extended family, take note.) This condo defies market gravity:


Q Bay launched in January 2013, which was close to a market peak; this should technically have been the worst time to buy. However, Q Bay performs well nonetheless, perhaps on the strength of its layout and facilities: Seven pools and two tennis courts, for example, which is quite rare for a condo of this size. It’s also possible that its better proximity to Bedok Reservoir Park adds some appeal. 


So while many who bought at the 2013 peak are grumbling right now, Q Bay buyers from that era managed to get away with it. This project has 154 profitable transactions, with only 14 losses; and of those losses, six occurred during the Covid peak in 2020.


On 24th April of this year, there was an exceptional transaction for a 797 sq. ft. unit on the fifth floor, with a gross profit of $295,000. This was over a period of less than 3.5 years, making for an annualised gain of 9.1%.


This is a good time for owners of the right projects to recognise their gains


With new launch prices at a high, there’s a larger pool of prospective buyers showing an interest in the resale market today. To see if it’s time for you to actualise your gains, make an appointment with me and I’ll be happy to provide the analysis and help you need.



 

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About The Author



Vivian joined the real estate industry in 2002.


Over the years, she has transacted numerous property deals, including HDB and private properties. She is well-versed in policies and regulations involving selling and purchasing residential properties. She has also handled complicated transactions like contra, divorce, administration/probate cases, and decoupling / part-share purchases.


Aside from her professional achievements, Vivian is a dedicated mother to 2 boys. Her role as a real estate mom has allowed her to strike a balance between her career and family, spending quality time with her children as they were growing up. Both boys are passionate footballers, and she takes great joy in supporting them at their school and club games.


Vivian is an active real estate salesperson and team leader. Call her at 98577714 for your real estate matters or if you are looking to join the industry.

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