Shophouse investment sales in Singapore a bright spot in virus-ravaged 2020: Colliers

Citi Commercial Pte Ltd

AS the Covid-19 pandemic put a dent on overall property investment activity in 2020, shophouses in Singapore proved an exception as the only other segment after commercial and mixed-use to improve from 2019.

According to real estate services and investment management company Colliers International, 18 shophouses - each over S$10 million and worth a total of S$288 million - transacted in Q4 of 2020 alone.

This marks the best quarterly showing since Q1 2018's S$401.7 million record, and brings shophouse investment sales for the full year to S$467 million. It represents a 16.1 per cent increase from 2019 figures even as overall 2020 property investment sales declined 16.7 per cent on year, noted Colliers in a report on Wednesday.

Commercial assets made up the lion's share of 2020 transactions at 52 per cent. The sector saw 8.8 per cent volume growth to S$18.8 billion, boosted by CapitaLand Mall Trust's acquisition of CapitaLand Commercial Trust's assets upon their merger in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Beyond the merger, Colliers also observed increased institutional acquisition of prime office buildings, attributed to more tech giants setting up bases in Singapore and the URA Incentive Scheme rejuvenation of older precincts.

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