All the obstacles facing Singapore's property market might not be cleared, but one dark cloud over the luxury end has disappeared, analysts said.
Singapore's extremely-high-end properties are now cheap compared with similar luxury properties in other major capital cities, according to Brandon Lee, a property analyst at JPMorgan in Singapore.
After a 15-25 percent drop in prime and luxury residential prices since the market peak in 2011, Singapore's properties now represent a good deal for ultra-high-net-worth investors who were comparison shopping between capitals, Lee said. Luxury housing in London, Hong Kong and New York was changing hands at prices as much as 165 percent higher than in Singapore, Lee noted.
That "very attractive" gap was drawing interest from private equity and global property funds keen to buy multiple apartments from developers in "block" deals, Lee said. Family offices and rich individuals were also increasingly interested in making purchases, he noted.
Despite often needing to offer additional discounts to do those bulk deals, developers have a big motivation: Singapore's government does not allow developers to sit on unsold units while waiting for buyers to return to the market. Any units unsold two years after a project's completion face an "extension charge" of 8 percent of the proportional land cost for the first year, rising to 16 percent in the second year and 24 percent in the third.