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Category: Condo

North Gaia EC – A good property investment?


This review is North Gaia by Sing Holdings Ltd. It’s a 99-year leasehold development at Yishun Avenue 9 in District 27. The site covers 21,514 square meters (231,575 square feet). The blocks will have ten 14-storey blocks and total 617 units.This is the first EC to be built in the area since 2014. There will likely be some demand. It also boasts one of the most prominent executive condo locations since the 2018 sale of Tampine Avenue 10 land parcel. The Parc Central Residences currently under construction.This review will provide an objective examination of the design, locational attributes, and investment potential.

Who is North Gaia EC’s Developer?

Sing Holdings Limited is the developer of North Gaia EC on Yishun Avenue 9. It is a Singapore-based property development and investment holding company. It was founded in 1964 and is listed on the Mainboard of Singapore Exchange.The Company is involved in many types of property development including landed homes, apartments, condos, condominiums, office buildings, industrial buildings, factories, warehouses and offices. It has built several residential projects, including BelleRive in Bukit Timah, The Laurels of Cairnhill, Waterwoods, Punggol, Robin Residences at Robin Drive.The Company’s projects have been awarded the FIABCI Singapore Property Award, and the BCA Greenmark Award (Gold Plus).


North Gaia Executive Condo

After the government launched the land auction on 30 April 2020, Sing Holdings won the Yishun Avenue 9 location. Sing Holdings paid $373,500,000 to secure the parcel of land measuring 21,514 sqm (231 5,75575 sqft). This land parcel has a maximum gross floor area (GFA) 60,240 sqm (648.418 sqft), which translates into a $576 psf ppr rate for North Gaia EC.North Gaia will be available for purchase at $1,200 per square foot. The prices for North Gaia will be very similar to those for Parc Central Residences executive condo in Tampines that was released for sale in January, but at a slightly higher land rate of $578 per square foot ppr.Over at Canberra Crescent, Provence Residence was the most recent EC to launch in the north this season. The land price is $566 per square foot, and the prices range from S$ 1,022 to 1,304 per square feet.North Gaia will have a limited opportunity to purchase a property at a lower price, given that Tengah’s June tender for an executive condo site set a new record. This beats the $583 psf perr record for Sumang Walk EC Site in Punggol.

North Gaia EC: Key Attributes

  • It is located next to Khatib Bongsu Nature Park and offers a stunning view of Sungei Khatib, Johor Straits and the surrounding area.Green and peaceful living surroundings near many nature parks3 buses stop at Yishun MRT Station and Integrated Transport HubJunction Nine is just 6 minutes walk away, with many other shopping centers within easy reach.A wealth of lifestyle amenities – SAFRA Yishun Country Club and Orchid Country Club are just a few examples of the many interesting options available.

Where is North Gaia EC located?


North Gaia EC can be found next to Symphony Suites. This condo development was completed in 2018 on Yishun Avenue 9. It overlooks the Khatib Bongsu and Sungei Khatib nature parks, which offer breathtaking views of the 40ha nature reserve, Seletar island, and Johor Straits.It is approximately 1.6 km from the Yishun integrated transportation hub (ITH). ITHs are fully air-conditioned bus interchanges, which are connected to MRT stations and adjacent commercial developments like shopping malls.Northpoint City is the largest mall in the north and is only 3 bus stops away.

Living Close To Nature

Khatib Bongsu Nature ParkNorth Gaia executive condo can be found just across the Khatib Bongsu reserve and Sungei Khatib.It is expected that the 40ha nature reserve will be completed by 2024. The area used to include mangroves and other mudflats. The public can explore the rich fauna and flora of the reserve, and also go kayaking through its dense network of mangrove waterways.There are many parks near Khatib Bongsu, including the following:

Yishun Park @ Yishun Greenwalk – This park was completed in 2016 and is located on the Yishun Ring Road. It is only 10 minutes walk from North Gaia EC. This park is open to all members of the community, and allows them to learn more about Singapore’s native flora. Signboards are available to assist visitors in navigating the park and trails. Families will enjoy the sheltered resting areas and children’s playground.

Yishunpond Park – Located just 6 minutes from North Gaia EC it is a peaceful haven with a pond surrounded and cultivated by a wide range of plants, trees, shrubs, and marshland species. Information boards provide information about the park’s fauna and birds. Nature enthusiasts can find many bird species and learn more from them. Visitors can also enjoy a bird’s-eye view of the surrounding area from the spiral tower. Or, visitors can relax on the benches and take in the beauty and tranquility of the water promenade.

Yishun Park – It’s a 14-hectare park that features natural greenery and a variety tropical fruit trees like durian, rambutan and star fruit, coconut, star fruit, coconut, bread fruit trees, and other tropical fruits. It was built from an old rubber estate and offers many facilities, including a children’s playground, fitness zones, amphitheatre, multi-purpose courts, and an amphitheatre. Multi-purpose courts and playgrounds are great for families, as well as for entertaining children for hours. Visitors can also use the facilities at the SAFRA Clubhouse located on the park’s premises.

Lower Seletar Reservoir Park – Just 8 minutes from North Gaia EC’s office, the tranquil waters, balmy breezes, and peaceful surroundings make it a great place to enjoy leisure activities on land or in the water. It features a Family Bay, a new performance stage, and a bioswale, rain garden, and a Heritage Bridge. There are many activities to enjoy. It’s a popular spot for exercise enthusiasts to go for jogs or leisurely walks, and the jetty is a great place for anglers to catch their next big catch.

Sembawang Beach Park This is one of Singapore’s last natural beaches and is very popular among anglers, bird-watchers, and water-sports enthusiasts.

Sembawang hot spring park – Located 6 minutes from North Gaia EC. The geothermally heated water has healing and medicinal properties that may help with rheumatism and arthritis, as well as skin conditions. The hot spring water is popular for its healing properties. Some even use it to cook eggs.

Yishun Nature Park

Yishun Pond Park

Lower Seletar Reservoir

Sembawang Hot Springs Park

Convenient access to Amenities

North Gaia EC can be found 6 minutes walk from Junction Nine, a neighborhood shopping center. It is composed of two levels and houses 146 commercial units, which offer shoppers and families an extensive range of retail shops to satisfy their daily needs.There are also several restaurants and a food court. On Level 2, you will find a Sheng Shiong supermarket for groceries and fresh produce.Yishun Ten is located approximately 700m from Junction Nine.Yishun Ten is home to a Golden Village cinema as well as several retail outlets. It is connected with Northpoint City which is the North’s largest shopping center. It offers a wide range of retail, lifestyle and recreation options as well as F&B choices. Northpoint City also houses the Nee Soon Central Club, Yishun Public Library, and a town plaza with 10 basketball courts. Residents of North Gaia EC have all the modern conveniences they need.There are many shopping centers around the Yishun estate, including Northpoint City and Junction Nine. They are located just 1-4 stops from Yishun MRT station and include Canberra Plaza, Sembawang Shopping Centre Sun Plaza, Causeway Point, Sun Plaza, Sun Plaza, and Sun Plaza. They provide North residents with a vast retail ecosystem that can meet all their daily necessities.

Interesting Activities at Yishun

Yishun was once a remote and sleepy nighbourhood in a far-flung part of Singapore. It has become one of Singapore’s most desirable suburban housing estates in the past two decades, thanks to the opening of the Yishun Metro Station in December 1998.Residents of North Gaia EC have a unique experience because they can find many interesting and fun recreational activities scattered throughout the precinct. These include:

SAFRA Yishun – It offers a variety of outdoor and indoor activities for all ages. Among the most popular are Canopy Walk, a rope course that allows climbers to be lifted 15-18m above the ground, Rock Climbing & Abseiling and Cosmic Bowling (glow in the dark bowling), Paintball, Laser Tag, and others.

ORTO Fishing and Prawning – This is the largest fishing and prawning facility in Singapore. The seafood caught on the spot can be grilled right there for your enjoyment.

ORTO Maximum Drift-Karting Arena is Singapore’s first and most exclusive Drift-Karting Arena. It is Go-Karting mixed with a “Drifting” element. Drivers will have to steer the vehicles around curves so they don’t slide. This is a test of their control and ability to keep the wheels in place when the tires lose grip.

Diggersite is a place where families and children can experience the joy of operating small-scale construction machinery. Children will benefit from the educational and recreational digger rides. They can also learn fine motor skills and improve hand-eye coordination.

Goats at Hay Dairies– Visitors can learn about goats and also milk them. It’s a great day out for all ages. Fresh milk can also be purchased and available in chocolate and original flavors.

Water Venture, Sembawang – This company conducts outdoor activities like kayaking, sea-rafting and camping. You can also enjoy team-building obstacles courses similar to OBS, with stunning views of the Straits of Johor.

SAFRA Yishun


ORTO Prawning and Fishing

Hays Dairies

Schools Near North Gaia Executive Residence

Many schools are located near North Gaia. There are many schools within 2km of North Gaia for families who wish to register their children for Primary 1 admission. They will be granted priority admission due to the Ministry of Education’s distance based admission criteria. These primary schools include:Within a 1km

  • Chongfu School


Between 1 and 2km

  • Ahmad Ibrahim Primary School

There are many secondary schools to choose from, including:

  • Admiralty Secondary SchoolAhmad Ibrahim Secondary SchoolSecondary School CanberraChung Cheng High School (Yishun)Naval Base Secondary SchoolNorthbrooks Secondary SchoolNorthland Secondary SchoolOrchid Park Secondary SchoolSembawang Secondary SchoolSpectra Secondary SchoolWoodlands Ring Secondary SchoolSecondary School YishunSecondary School Yishun Town

North Gaia EC is approximately six minutes away from Yishun Innova Junior College. It is the nearest post-secondary institution.

International Schools

There are a few international schools within a short distance of North Gaia EC. This could attract expatriate families working in the northern part of Singapore. These international schools include:

  • GEMS World Academy

Khoo Teck Puat Hospital (KTPH)

Khoo Teck Puat HospitalThe Khoo Teck Puat, located just 5 minutes from North Gaia EC provides quick and easy access for residents who live in the North to all of the North’s medical facilities. It can also be used to attract many tenants who work in the healthcare and medical sectors.KTPH is part Yishun Health. This network includes medical institutions and facilities that are part of the National Healthcare Group, located in the north of Singapore. It also includes Admiralty Medical Centre and Yishun Community Hospital, as well as extensions like Wellness Kampung.Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, (KTPH), is a 795-bed acute and general care hospital which opened in June 2010. The hospital combines medical expertise and high standards of personalized care in a healing setting.

North Region Transformation: A New Property Hotspot!

Northern Agri-Tech and Food CorridorThe government of Singapore has a long-term strategy when it comes to land planning. It aims to strike a balance between economic and social concerns.The future of Singapore will depend on technology to increase economic growth, create more green spaces and build vibrant housing estates that offer employment, education and recreation.The North Region is a “property hotspot”, and is poised to grow into one of Singapore’s most important economic hubs. Property investors will have the advantage of being the first to move when many developments are still in their infancy.The Woodlands Regional Centre is located just 4 stations from Yishun MRT and will receive new facilities for industry, business, research, and development over the next 15-years. It will also be located in the heart of Northern Agri-Tech and Food Corridor. This includes the Sungei Kadut Eco-District and future Agri-Food Innovation Park.Woodlands Central will see the construction of new mixed-use buildings with retail, office and residential components. It will be connected with the Woodlands MRT station, Thomson-East Coast Line.Woodlands North Coast’s waterfront precinct will also feature new homes and new job opportunities.

North Coast Innovation Corridor (NCIC).

The North Coast Innovation Corridor is one of the most important developments in the north. It will connect the Woodlands Regional Centre, Sembawang Shipyard, and the future Seletar Regional Centre to form a network of economic hubs in Singapore’s north and northern-eastern regions. Its goal is to bring more jobs nearer to people’s homes.These hubs are expected to attract businesspeople and industrialists, particularly those who have business connections to Malaysia.The NCIC will combine the Agri-Food Innovation Park (the future) and Woodlands Regional Centre (the future). It will also include synergistic elements from the North, which includes the Senoko Food Zone, Republic Polytechnic, and farms. This will create a variety of office, retail, industrial, and business parks spaces throughout the corridor.The North Region will be another hot spot for property in the future, with such significant developments.

Development of a New Rapid Transit System (RTS)


North Gaia EC – An Investment Perspective

North Gaia EC has many attractive features, as we have already mentioned. You will find a peaceful living environment near nature parks, easy access to schools, shopping centres, and other essential amenities, as well as a wide range of entertainment, lifestyle, and recreational facilities.Woodlands will also be the North Region’s largest regional centre. This will encourage the creation of high-value employment, which will eventually boost housing demand and support property values.A MRT station is not within walking distance for some.

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Emerging trend in property for Green Assets

According to M&G’s global outlook report, green assets will be in demand more than ever. This highlights major trends that are affecting global property investment. The result will likely be a growing value diversion based on asset quality, occupiers’ sustainability needs and asset quality. It states that tenant-landlord relationships will be redefined as a result of net zero and will require unprecedented cooperation.

Asia Pacific has seen green real estate take off and it is “gaining a lot more momentum”, Richard van den Berg, M&G Real Estate’s Asia fund manager, said in a panel discussion discussing the real estate outlook in Asia Pacific for 2022.He says that the Covid effect has made people realize how important it is for them to live and work in a healthy and safe environment. This is evident in the demands for high-efficiency particulate filters, better ventilation, and crowd control measures at work.

M&G says that the “green revolution” in Asia will offer significant opportunities for investors, especially through the financing and delivery of green energy, as well as the construction and manufacturing of projects.These are evident in initiatives like Singapore’s CleanTech Park or South Korea’s Pangyo Technovalley 2. They offer investors the chance to tap into clean tech growth and longer-term structural changes related to ESG through direct investment in real estate facilities.

M&G states that buildings with poor environmental, governance, and governance (ESG), features will be under greater pressure. It adds that asset managers will have to balance the delivery of ESG enhancements with the need to weigh up medium- and long-term performance benefits against short-term costs.CBRE predicts that future ESG regulations will be more stringent. CBRE’s market outlook report highlights that “more countries are pledging to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030 or 2060,” and that occupiers will be under greater pressure to adhere to ESG standards for sustainability disclosure.

It adds that companies will be more careful in selecting offices based upon sustainability and wellness features, as well as landlord ESG performance, this year.Hybrid working guidelines are likely to have an impact on the office sector. CBRE says that while occupiers want to save money by using less space they are concerned about the impact on productivity, engagement, and corporate culture. “Occupants will have to redefine their office role while accurately measuring space usage and creating an agile office network that supports a dispersed workforce.

Rebound in office expansion

CBRE predicts that Asia Pacific offices will reopen by 2H2022. According to data from Google Mobility Index, traffic in offices districts of Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan have all returned to pre-Covid levels. According to it, Asian companies will most likely return office-based work. North Asia’s initial response showed that, despite Covid-19 spreading, most companies continue to work in-office with some restrictions on occupancy and team rotation.

The new Grade-A office supply for Asia Pacific will rise 15% yo-y to nearly 67 million square feet in 2022. This is the highest number in more than a decade. CBRE notes that China will account for almost half of all new supply, and cities such as Shanghai and Shenzhen are likely to experience a supply peak by 2022. The majority of supply pressure will come from non-CBD regions, which account for 90% of the new space.CBRE forecasts that leasing activity will rise in Hong Kong and Japan, Australia and South Korea, but new supply will limit demand in Singapore and South Korea.

It adds that there will be “major drivers of demand” for flight-to-quality relocations this year. This is due to the emphasis on sustainability as well as wellness.CBRE recommends that office landlords invest in smart, green buildings and retrofit older stock to achieve this end. By incorporating sustainability features at every stage of a building’s life cycle (planning, design, construction, and operation), new ESG requirements can be met.CBRE suggests that landlords consider incorporating flexible space into their office portfolios or forming partnerships with co-working operators to cater for uncertainty.

There are bright spots for select retail

Although e-commerce has been greatly accelerated by the pandemic, brick-and mortar stores still exist. This is evident in the need for omnichannel sales, and delivery. As part of the “click-and-collect” model, physical malls also fulfill online orders. M&G observes that many online retailers have partnered with physical retailers to enhance the customer experience. Additionally, goods returns are being processed more frequently in physical retail assets.

CBRE anticipates that experiential retail will be more prominent. It says that the shift to online shopping during the pandemic has meant that retailers and shopping centers must offer a unique experience in order to entice shoppers back to brick-and mortar stores. You can use promotional events, expand display areas, set up more thematic shops, and implement new F&B concepts to attract shoppers.M&G predicts that the retail sector may be at a “turning moment” in its cycle. It cites early signs of rising capital values and better sentiment in certain parts of the market. It says that retail rents could stabilize or grow as the economy recovers. This could potentially lead to the return of yield-hungry investor,”CBRE warns that although recovery is expected to continue this fiscal year, the expansionary momentum will be driven by select outperforming street shops, malls, and other retail outlets. It states that secondary retail, even properties in core areas, is unlikely to face further rental cuts and tenant outflows.It anticipates that China will see retail rental growth accelerate from last year in Hong Kong, but it will remain low single digits. 

In the meantime, Taipei’s high-end shops and many CBD districts in Australia will see a rental correction in 2022. However, it is expected that this will be milder. It is expected that this will continue in the face of high vacancy and a shortage of international tourists and students, but it could quickly reverse once international travel resumes.CBRE expects that the retail leasing market will favor tenants in the future, but it believes landlords will adopt a risk-sharing model of leasing, which includes more rent clauses, fit-out subsidies, and tenancy improvement.Pop-up and shorter leases are gaining popularity among general retailers. This would allow them to test consumer reaction, while landlords would have the ability to renew their tenant mix more frequently, CBRE points out.…

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Purchasing private property in Singapore: Financing

After deciding where their first home should go, many homeowners are now wondering about the differences between a bank loan and an HDB loan. Are you overwhelmed by all the fine print and jargon? We’ll help you understand the differences between HDB loans, and bank loans.

What are the key points regarding HDB loan vs. bank loan?

  • HDB loans require a lower cash outlay
  • Bank loans have variable interest rates, while HDB loan rates are stable.
  • For about a decade, bank loans were cheaper than HDB loans
  • It is possible to switch between an HDB loan and a bank loan.
  • HDB is more flexible than banks when it comes to late payments


An HDB loan has a huge advantage in that you can pay a lower downpayment.

HDB loans have a maximum loan to-value (LTV), of 85%. You can borrow up to 85% of the flat’s price or value, depending on . You can pay the 15% remaining downpayment with cash or savings from your CPF Ordinary Account.

Bank loans have a maximum LTV ratio of 75%. This means that you will need to pay an additional 10% downpayment.

Additionally, 5% of the downpayment must be made in cash. The remaining 20% can be paid in cash or CPF OA savings.

Monthly instalments and interest rates

The interest rate on HDB loans is 0.1% higher than the CPF rate. The interest rate for HDB loans at 2.5% CPF is 2.6%

Bank loan rates, however, are more volatile, as they can change depending on market conditions. Also, this applies to loan packages with fixed interest rates. These so-called fixed rate home loans have a locked-in period of between two and five years. After that, they are subject to a floating rate.

Regardless of whether you are taking a SIBOR or SORA, BR, FHR home loan, your interest rate will be the prevailing rate plus the spread.

The interest rate of “3M SIBOR + 0.75” is the current three-month SIBOR rates plus the spread (0.75%) charged by banks. The interest rate will change every three months if the SIBOR rate is changed.

If you have a home loan at 1M SIBOR, your monthly loan repayment amount will be different. The loan repayment amount for a 3M SIBOR home loan will change every three to four months.

The interest rate for “BR + 0.5”, is the current board rate minus 0.5% spread by the bank. The bank sets the board rate, but that is the difference.

FHR home loans are tied to fixed deposit rates at the bank. It is very similar to a BR loan, as the bank sets the rate.

Why is bank lending cheaper?

Historical interest rates for bank home loans range from 3% to 4 percent per annum. This is higher than HDB loans.

Bank interest rates have fallen to record lows over the past 10 years, largely due to the 2008 Global Financial Crisis. Bank loans currently average 1.8% per year, compared to HDB’s 2.6%.

Lower monthly instalments are due to lower interest rates.

This is an example

Let’s assume you are buying a flat for S$350,000. Let’s say that the purchase price and the valuation are equal.

An HDB loan has a maximum loan amount of S$297.500 and a LTV of 85%. The downpayment is S$52,500. Monthly repayments for a loan with a term of 25 years will be S$1,349.67.

The loan quantum for a bank loan with a 75% LTV will be S$262,500. The downpayment will be S$87,000.

If you assume a rate of 1.8% annum for a 25-year loan term, your monthly payments will be lower at S$1,087.24.

*Based on typical loan rates at the time of writing. It is not possible to assume that bank interest rates will stay at the same level for 25 years.

To calculate the monthly payments for your home loan, you can also use’s mortgage calculator.

Income cap

HDB loans are available for purchase of HDB BTO and resale Flat. They have stricter eligibility criteria including the income ceiling. An HDB loan is not available to you if your monthly gross household income exceeds S$14,000

Bank loans, on the other hand, don’t have income caps, so they’re suitable for people with higher incomes.


HDB loans have a maximum term of 25 years while bank loans for HDB apartments can be extended up to 30 years. The LTV will be reduced by 55% if the loan term exceeds 25 years, or if the borrower is older than 65.

To learn more about the impact of home loans on loan amounts, please read our LTV limits guide.

A longer tenure is a positive thing as it can lower your monthly payments and spread them out. However, this can also mean paying higher interest.


Refinance your HDB loan to a bank loan, subject to approval by the bank. This is possible even if the original loan had a lower LTV. You can lower your monthly payments by getting a lower interest rate.

You can’t refinance a bank loan into an HDB mortgage. You can refinance your bank loan by either repricing it or switching to another bank.

Late Payments

HDB assesses the annual rate and charges late payment fees for monthly instalments. The rate is 5.5% annually, from 1 January through 31 March 2022.

They are also more flexible and willing to negotiate late payments. This doesn’t mean that you won’t have to pay your home loan. You can still sell the flat or downgrade.

Banks are less willing to minimize their losses.

Early repayment

The HDB loan has another advantage: there is no lock-in period and no early repayment penalty. You can also pay it off sooner to lower the interest and financial burden.

However, it is better to not pay off a bank loan early if you are taking it out. If you cancel your bank loan before the lock-in period ends, the bank will charge a prepayment fee. This is because they earn interest.

HDB Loan vs Bank Loan: Which one is better?

HDB loans are a good option if you have a tight budget. They require less cash upfront. Fixed interest rates give you an idea of the monthly cost of your home loan. If you feel the interest rate is too high, you have the option to refinance your HDB loan to a loan from a bank later.

If you are looking to make a quick upgrade (e.g. If you plan to quickly upgrade (e.g., sell your flat and buy private as soon you can), you might consider a bank loan or a quick refinance into an HDB loan. This will reduce your monthly payments and lower the interest that can be added to your resale profits.…

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