Developers keen to resume launches

High-end property developers are expected to resume their project launches in the coming months aided by strong take-up in the first half of the year and more positive outlook in the economic front.

At least two luxurious residences in Kuala Lumpur and five high-end residential projects in Penang will be unveiled soon.

“Given the warm response for some of the recent project launches, we understand more developers are planning to launch their high-end properties in Kuala Lumpur and Penang in second half of the year,” says HwangDBS Vickers Research analyst Yee Mei Hui.

Developers are now more confident about resuming launches than focusing on clearing inventories previously.

“We believe that the good response from the properties buyers is an indication that demand for high-end has started to return,” says Yee.

She says while there would be a large incoming supply of high-end condominiums, especially around the KLCC and Mont’ Kiara areas, over the next two years, these new launches generally have lower entry prices due to smaller built-ups and the availability of attractive housing loan packages, says Yee.

“These new launches offer attractive financing schemes such as low down-payments and minimal cash outflow up to two years until the property’s delivery,” she adds.

DNP Bhd will be launching Verticas Residensi condominiums in Bukit Ceylon in Kuala Lumpur priced at RM970 per sq ft.

There will also be the release of 163 high-end serviced apartments for RM1,300 to RM1,400 psf for semi-furnished completed units by the previous en-bloc buyer of Pavilion Residences Tower A.

In Penang, Eastern & Oriental Bhd (E&O) is expected to launch its Seri Tanjung Pinang high-end linked houses, serviced apartments and condominiums these few months.

“We understand E&O is looking to launch its Seri Tanjung Pinang high-end condominiums in September to October at RM600 to RM700 psf,” says Yee.

“It is also planning to launch the second block of the St Mary high-end serviced apartments at RM1,200 psf via international road shows starting in September,” she says.

When contacted by StarBizWeek, an official from E&O says the company will be making announcements on the official launches of its St Mary project within the next few weeks.

IJM Land Bhd will also be launching two of its projects in Penang, namely the Light Linear upper-mid condominiums located near the Jelutong Expressway, and Light Point high-end condominiums later this month and in October respectively.

E&O’s maiden launch of 169 units of St Mary residences in June, the first high-end launch since the fourth quarter of last year, saw a strong 80% take-up rate after a recent five-day preview.

“The sales were above the market’s expectations,” says Yee, noting that buyers were predominantly locals who bought mainly for investment purposes.

Located within the golden triangle district in KL, St Mary Residences were sold at an average price of RM900 psf.

Sky Residences
SP Setia Bhd will be launching its first luxury high-rise residential project, Sky Residences on Jalan Tun Razak, tomorrow.

The sale preview of SP Setia Sky Residences Tower B kicked off last September but were only opened for sale in January this year, in conjunction with the launch of its 5/95 home loan package.

“Close to 95% of our units in Tower B have been taken up. We are now previewing Tower A and will officially open it for sale tomorrow,” says president and chief executive officer Tan Sri Liew Kee Sin.

“This will be the group’s final official launch before the end of the 5/95 programme,” he says.

Given the strong bookings it has on hands, Liew says SP Setia is unlikely to extend its incentive schemes beyond this month.

“We will stop launching any more new products for a few months and concentrate on delivering what had already been sold,” he says.

SP Setia, the largest developer by market capitalisation and sales, has been offering 5/95 home loan package and no interest payments during construction since January to give a boost to the company’s sales.

As of 30 June, SP Setia sales touched RM1.04bil, close to its full-year target of RM1.1bil for financial year ending Oct 31, 2009.

SP Setia has cash reserves of RM551mil and a net gearing of 0.23 times.

Sunrise bookings
Niche high-end developer Sunrise Bhd is among the developers who have benefited from the introduction of attractive incentive schemes.

“Our new bookings have soared to over RM242mil for Mont’ Kiara 11 condominiums and Residence bungalows from our promotion for both projects from March to June this year,” says an official of the company.

Mont’ Kiara 11 residences and the Residence bungalows are priced at an average selling price of RM850 psf and from RM5mil each respectively.

Following the introduction of the 10/90 financing schemes and zero payment up to two years of delivery promotion, Sunrise’s bookings have picked up since mid-March.

In fact, the collective sales for both projects within the first month of promotion have been catching up on its cumulative sales of RM247mil for the first nine months.

Yee of HwangDBS says about 47% of the company’s RM965mil unbilled sales (excluding the new bookings of RM242mil) will deplete by this year-end with the completion of Mont’ Kiara 10 and Solaris Dutamas.

“Sunrise needs to launch new projects in order to replenish its unbilled sales,” she says.

In response to this, the company’s spokesperson says, “It’s too premature to say when we will have our next launch. We are watching the economy right now.”

“Nonetheless, we have comfortable gearing, ample landbank and a pipeline of new projects to be launched, depending on market conditions.”

Sunrise, the largest prime landowner in Mont’ Kiara, is expected to launch its RM732mil Mont’ Kiara 28 condominiums with selling price of RM670 psf in early 2010.

Other launches in the pipeline are its Mont’ Kiara 20 mixed development and Lot 121 Solaris Office Tower. The former has a gross development (GDV) of RM767mil while the latter has a GDV of RM455mil. Both projects has an average selling price of RM700 psf.

Meanwhile, Sunrise will also have RM336mil of completed properties available for sale, which will underpin its earnings until end-2011, says Yee.

On the outlook for the company, the spokesperson says, “The outlook ahead will remain challenging. Much will depend on the strength of the recovery. But the worst is behind us.”

He says the low interest rates and the lack of new launches over the past year as well as the expectation of rising inflation will underpin property demand in the near future.

Mah Sing Group Bhd managing director and group chief executive Tan Sri Leong Hoy Kum says the company hopes to bring forward the soft launch of its Legenda@Southbay in Penang to the second half of this year.

“We have not held back any launches due to the strong take-up for our products. In fact, we may bring forward some launches,” he says.

The group plans a soft launch of the first 15 units of its Legenda@ Southbay bungalows with some GDV of RM30mil sometime in the second half. The whole project consists of 76 units with total GDV of RM284mil.

“We are looking to bring forward the launches of our Legenda@Southbay due to the overwhelming response for our three-storey super link project Residence@Southbay,” he says.

To date, Mah Sing has sold about 89% of its launched units in Residence@Southbay. Since its launch in May, it registered cumulative sales of 177 units valued at RM149.15mil.

“We have exceeded our 2009 sales target for this project by 60%, and this boosted our confidence that the market in Penang is receptive to our product concept and value proposition,” says Leong.

For the first half, Mah Sing launched seven property projects worth RM315mil, meeting 80% of the company’s full-year launch target of RM394mil.

Leong says the company has achieved approximately 70% of its full-year sales target of RM453mil within the first half of the year. - By Shannen Wong (The Star)

No comments