True Story: I made half a Million $ from a 99 years landed

True Story: Half a Million Profit from a 99 years Landed

I bought a leasehold 99 resale inter terrace in 2010 for $1.45m and sold it for $1.925m. The land size is about 1,660 sqft and built-up is about 2,500+ square foot. At the point when I purchased this terrace house, it was about 13 years old.

99 years landed


📌Qn: You could have bought a condo, maybe at a lower price. So why buy a 99 years landed?

It was more for family reasons than investment reasons (i.e. for own use). My mom had some health problems and might not have too many years left. We came from a 3- Room HDB flat background, so I thought of letting her try the “landed living” experience.

📌Qn: Why did you buy this LH99 inter terrace and not freehold?

$1.45m was what I could afford then. This budget can’t get you a freehold or 999 terrace Qn: Did you foresee that you’re gonna have at least half a million profit? I bought it in 2010, that was after the 2009 global financial crisis. I thought that buying a landed property will a safer bet because landed property in Singapore has always see a steady but gradual increase in prices. Singapore landed properties is not prone to speculation and only Singaporeans can buy. This will at least help to preserve my capital

📌Qn: What was your exit plan?

I know that I am not going to stay in this 99 years landed for long and will likely be staying here for the next 10 years. That’s why I didn’t spend too much on renovation. All in all, I only spent $5,000 to touch up and polish the flooring When you buy a condo, there’s chance for en bloc but there’s a basically zero chance of en bloc for LH99 landed property

📌Qn: Who are your likely buyers?

I did my own research. At the price of $1.925m, the buyers’ alternatives are likely the 4 to 5 bedrooms condo likely Casa Merah, a condo beside Tanah Merah MRT. A 4-bedroom at casah merah is going for about $1.8 to $1.9m but the space dimension will be very different. There always be takers or buyers for a 99years leasehold inter-terrace because it offers the lowest entry price for landed properties. For a budget of $2m or below, you can’t possible get a freehold or 999 years landed.

📌Qn: What did you do with the profit?

When you sell something? You must have a plan to use the money for something productive. If you sell this property away and put this money into the bank, it is not going to generate much return. So, my take is that if you sell, you should have a plan buy another something else, regardless it is investment in stocks, cryptocurrency or anything of investment grade

📌Qn: 99 Years Landed- Is it a “Must-Sell?”

It is a “Must-Sell” only when you think in terms of economic sense. When you sell and move on to a 999 or Freehold landed, it is because you’re making plans for future generation, a legacy.

[3 Key Lessons on 99 years landed Property]

📌#1 It’s okay to buy resale LH99 landed property

Resale LH99 landed is ok, even for those between 10 to 20 years old especially when you have budget constraint. There are limits on CPF usage and loans only when the remaining lease is less than 60 years. With limits on CPF usage and loans, you will have a smaller buyer pool.

99 years landed

Why “20 years”? This is because when you sell to the next owner, you are giving him or her a buffer. They are given an option to stay there for next 10 years, then they can opt to sell off before it hit the remaining lease of 60 years.

📌#2 Don’t spend too much on renovations if you don’t intend to stay long

I knew that I will not be staying here for too long, so I only spend $5,000 to touch up the place. If you know your are not going to stay there for long. Don’t spend too much on the fixtures or renovations.

99 years landed

I will rather you buy non fixtures like designer furniture (e.g. scan teak furniture) which I like personally. It is quite common to spend $150-200K to renovate a old terrace house

📌#3 Landed Property supply is scarce in Singapore.

Although LH99 landed might not be the most popular, but this “land scarce” element will mitigate a bit on the lease decay effect. As a whole, the landed property ratio is getting smaller in the private properties segment as we build more condos

LH99 landed may not perform as good as 999 or Freehold. But bear in mind when you have budget constraint, you need to be flexible or open minded. Otherwise, it will lead to inaction

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Dennis Lim

Dennis has more than a decade of experience investing in real estate. Like many fellow Singaporeans, he grew up in a HDB flat with dreams to live in a condominium. Through careful financial planning & hardwork, this became a reality when he was 30. He now owns 3 private properties in Singapore and has helped hundreds of Singaporeans to achieve their goal of upgrading their homes in land-scarce Singapore.

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