據外資測量師行昨日發布的物業市場報告指，隨疫情走勢穩定，帶動港島區甲廈租賃交投轉活，近期市場矚目成交為美資金融投資公司景順 (Invesco) 承租中環怡和大廈3.1萬方呎樓面。
本報昨日就上述消息向置地及景順 (Invesco) 查詢，前者於截稿前未獲回覆，後者表示對消息不作回應。
此外，市場近期另一大手租務成交為高博金律師事務所 (Kobre & Kim LLP) 承租同區冠君大廈 (Champion Tower)，涉及樓面約9000方呎，以市值呎租約110元計，月租約99萬。
據土地審裁處文件顯示，上述定富街71至79號 (單號) 商住舊樓，鄰近觀塘道休憩處，毗鄰港鐵牛頭角站，步行前往約2分鐘，同時亦有多條巴士綫行走，交通便利，極具重建價值。現址為一幢樓高6層的商住舊樓，地下設有4個商鋪，樓上則提供約30個住宅單位，該廈早於1971年落成入伙，至今樓齡約51年。上址地盤面積約2787方呎，若以重建地積比9倍重建發展，可建總樓面約25083方呎。
事實上，萬科香港去年曾向土地審裁處申請強拍定富街45至47號華發樓、49至51號安賢樓、53至63號定勝樓3幢舊樓，整個項目地盤面積約7595方呎，可建總樓面約68355方呎，當時市場對該項目估值約3.59億，若連同是次申請強拍的項目計，總市場估值約4.72億。若上述富定街45至79號 (單號) 一列舊樓合併重建發展，地盤面積擴展至約10382方呎，涉及可建總樓面約93438方呎。資料顯示，連上述項目土地審裁處今年迄今接獲5宗強拍申請，對比去年同期的6宗為少。
中環德已立街鋪1.65億易手 「住好啲」楊志超等承接 每呎3.58萬市價水平
Home prices at 15-month low but rebound on the way
Prices of private homes in Hong Kong fell to a 15-month low last month, government data showed, but market watchers said prices have bottomed out and will rebound in the second quarter.
The private home price index fell 2.7 points, or 0.7 percent month-on-month to 381.3 points last month amid the fifth Covid wave, data from the Rating and Valuation Department shows.
The accumulated drop in the first quarter was 3.2 percent and March home prices were also 2.1 percent lower than a year earlier.
Prices of small and medium-sized flats fell for the third month in a row and were 0.7 percent lower in March compared to that in February.
Among them, prices of flats under 40 square meters fell 0.99 percent month-on-month to the lowest since April 2020. Homes above 100 sq m recorded a 2.1 percent decrease in price last month from February, and also slid 5.9 percent compared to the same month in 2021.
The latest data mainly reflected the market situation from mid-February to early March, when the pandemic was still severe, but the drop was less than expected, a property agent said.
With Covid infections waning and the secondary market picking up, the agent believes that prices will stop falling this month and the declines may be wiped out this quarter.
Meanwhile, the official rental index also decreased 0.56 percent last month from a month ago to 178.8 points, the lowest in 10 months.
This came with the Hong Kong Mortgage Corporation set to raise the mortgage fixed interest rates for 10, 15, and 20 years by 25 basis points from next month.
A mortgage broker said that the rate hikes will have little impact on the property market as the official data showed only 0.1 percent of the mortgage loans approved in February were using fixed interest rates, while 97.3 percent of the loans' interest rates were calculated with reference to Hong Kong interbank offered rate.
First land sale for nano flats in Tuen Mun failed to take off because of market woes and site’s constraints, not minimum size imposed: analysts
Authorities on Tuesday rejected all five bids for site in Tai Lam, which would have yielded an estimated 2,020 homes
Real estate association argues not all developers could afford the price, while analysts point to potential hike in interest rates and pandemic
The first plot of land earmarked for residential flats that must be at least 280 sq ft has failed to attract bids not because of the government’s new minimum size requirement but rather due to the site’s constraints and prevailing market uncertainties in Hong Kong, analysts have told the Post.
The large site in Tuen Mun was viewed as a gauge of the industry’s response to the government’s drive to stop the proliferation of shoebox homes, known as “nano flats”.
Authorities on Tuesday rejected all five bids for the residential site in Tai Lam, which would have yielded an estimated 2,020 homes, after all tenders were below the reserve price.
But real estate professors and market analysts said the minimum size rule was unlikely to have dissuaded developers from making successful bids.
A surveyor said that the total investment for the project could be HK$15 billion (US$1.9 billion) including an estimated land cost of HK$8 billion.
“Developers will be less aggressive as it will increase the investment risk in an area with limited infrastructure considering the current market condition,” the surveyor said.
Apart from the site’s location and high land cost, analysts said they believed developers were acting more conservatively due to market factors, including a potential hike in interest rates and possible new waves of coronavirus infections.
“The government assesses the latest property price [to determine the reserve price] and it doesn’t consider changes and risks in the economy … yet it is different for developers … The cancellation of this tender is due to developers’ forecast for the property market,” said Lawrence Poon Wing-cheung, a senior lecturer at City University’s division of building science and technology.
Developers also denied that the low bids were linked to the size requirement.
“The withdrawal of the plot is definitely not related to the minimum size requirement for new flats. It is mainly due to the large size of the site and its inaccessibility,” said Stewart Leung Chi-kin, chairman of the Real Estate Developers Association of Hong Kong’s executive committee. “With such a large plot, not all developers can afford it.”
He rejected the suggestion that developers were holding back their land replenishment until the new chief executive formalised the housing policy.
In Hong Kong, the world’s most expensive property market, private developers have been building tiny flats, normally just between 200 and 300 sq ft, to attract buyers who cannot afford larger homes.
Authorities introduced the minimum size requirement in December last year with the aim of enhancing living space after a rise in shoebox homes.
The 1.3 million sq ft site is about 34 minutes away from Tuen Mun station by minibus.
Last month, Goldman Sachs said the city’s housing prices would fall 20 per cent between 2022 and 2025 as borrowing costs increased and demand slumped because of rising unemployment.
Poon added that developers feared that with the possible increase in interest rates, buyers would be reluctant to purchase flats which could lead to lower demand and prices, and such concerns would make developers more conservative in their bidding.
Poon said he believed the minimum size requirement would continue, even under a new government, and that the public and developers did not have major issues with the policy. He added that the Urban Renewal Authority, a housing supplier, had not faced difficulties in making bids for land under the programme.
Chau Kwong-wing, chair professor of the department of real estate and construction at the University of Hong Kong, agreed that the plot withdrawal was due to the location, noting a lack of nearby public transport networks, as well as market factors.
“The smaller the flats are, the more difficult they are to sell. There is a possibility of removing the restriction, but this depends on the [market] environment. If [developers] give up on building nano flats, there is no need for restricting flat size,” Chau said.
According to a property agency, only 92 small flats under 280 sq ft were transacted on the secondary market between March 1 and 28, some 24 per cent lower than February. The average price of these flats eased 0.7 per cent to HK$4.03 million, bringing the decline from its May 2021 peak to 4.8 per cent.
Chau suggested that authorities could set a lower reserve price or a minimum price range in the future to increase incentives for developers bidding sites, especially when the market environment was uncertain and the site location was not ideal.
Poon said the government could observe sales of other sites before reviewing the land sales strategy.
(South China Morning Post)
Hong Kong home prices fall to the lowest level since January 2021 as distressed owners slash prices, sell at a loss
Prices fell 0.7 per cent to 381.3 in March, the lowest since 381.9 in January 2021, government index shows
Owners of 264 homes sold their homes at a loss in the first quarter, the highest since the third quarter of 2010, according to property agency
Lived-in home prices in Hong Kong fell for the third straight month in March to a 14-month low as many homeowners sold their units at heavily discounted prices or even at a loss as the city struggled to contain the fifth-wave of the coronavirus pandemic.
Prices fell 0.7 per cent to 381.3 last month, the lowest since 381.9 in January 2021, according to an index published by the Rating and Valuation Department on Wednesday. Home prices eased 3.2 per cent in the first three months of the year, wiping out the 3.19 per cent gain in 2021.
“Homeowners selling at a loss reached a new high in the first quarter,” a property agent said. “It reflects the devastating impact of the fifth wave of the coronavirus pandemic on the property market.”
A total of 264 homes changed hands at a loss in the first quarter, the highest since the third quarter of 2010, according to the agency. The average gain per residential transaction, meanwhile, fell for the third consecutive quarter to 66.7 per cent, the lowest in the past 5.5 years.
Homebuyers are staying on the sidelines in anticipation of an imminent increase in interest rates, while demand is also being affected by the rising unemployment rate and a slump in stock market.
Tough social distancing rules pushed the unemployment rate to 5 per cent in the three months ending in March, the highest in nine months. The city’s benchmark Hang Seng Index fell 6 per cent in the January to March period, which was exacerbated by panic selling following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“Hong Kong home prices will fall 5 per cent in the first half with a brief respite in April,” a mortgage broker said.
The broker expects that home prices to tumble by 20 per cent over the next two years, noting that the Federal Reserve’s aggressive policy tightening timetable could bring to an end an era of cheap money that fuelled Hong Kong property prices over the last two decades.
The broker’s sentiment closely mirrors Goldman Sachs’ forecast that Hong Kong home prices would fall 20 per cent between 2022 to 2025 due to a slump in demand caused by an increase in borrowing costs and rising unemployment.
The Fed raised rates by 0.25 percentage points last month, the first increase since December 2018. It suggested it could lift rates six more times to 1.9 per cent this year.
However, property agents are optimistic, saying home prices have bottomed out.
The agent said that sales volume and prices would be boosted by the release of pent-up demand in May and June.
Another agent said that he expects activity in the primary residential market to improve from now on as more developers speed up new project launches.
More than 800 flats from four projects in Kowloon and the New Territories will be made available in the coming two weeks. It comes after the government eased Covid-19 curbs helping to reinvigorate the housing market from a three-month lull.
“Home sales will increase as buyers go on a revenge spending spree in the second quarter,” the agent said.
(South China Morning Post)