Whether you’re planning on investing in real estate in Singapore or anywhere else, there are some considerations to take into account.

Buying A Real Estate Factor #1: Investment Purpose and Horizon

Investing in real estate is a big step to take. It involves a lot of resources, and to buy or sell it is a lengthy and somewhat complicated process that demands that you plan ahead, and decide what it is you want the property for.

Buying for personal use is obviously different from buying to resell or lease, and so should your planning. If you are planning on selling it, will you do so shortly after buying it, and receive a low return on investment? Or will you rather wait for the property’s appreciation to go up considerably before finally selling it?

All of these options must be pondered before reaching your final decision.

Buying A Real Estate Factor #2: Transport

Public transport availability is also a key factor when acquiring a property. You must pay special attention to the proximity of train and subway stations, where the closest bus stops are, and what routes buses follow.

Whether you own a vehicle or not and whether you have no plans of using public transport or not, there are other standard aspects must be taken into account. Things such as the proximity to main highways, avenues, and streets come in very handy despite the type of transport used.

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Last, but not least, proximity to transport facilities has an effect on real estate valuation. The closer the property is to bus stops, bus terminals, important highways, and other transport-related infrastructure, the higher its value will be.

Read: 5 Property Websites In Singapore To Buy, Rent & Sell Houses

Buying A Real Estate Factor #3: Tenure

Choosing between freehold and leasehold can be the difference between owning a house and renting one.

If you opt for a freehold, then you own the property and the land it stands on forever. The property is yours, plain and simple. There is no landlord to pay annual ground rent to, nor is there a landlord to maintain the property; that responsibility is yours. Freehold is the most common way in which whole houses are sold.

Leasehold, on the other hand, means that you have a lease from the landlord, or freeholder, to use the property for a limited amount of time. This period of time can be quite long, some even stretching up to 999 years. This may not matter much for you as an individual, but if you have a family to leave patrimony to, a 40-year leasehold takes on a different dimension. Additionally, leasehold means that you must pay an annual ground rent, as well as maintenance fees to the freeholder.

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At first sight, freehold seems like the best option. However, this may not be the case. Due to how volatile a leasehold property is, the economy will create very interesting fluctuations in its value. When the economy booms, the value of leasehold properties skyrockets, unfortunately, the opposite will happen once the economy goes down.

Leaseholds, whether you’re a freeholder or a leaseholder demand more complex decisions to be made. This makes for more complex decisions when it comes to leaseholds, whether you’re a freeholder or a leaseholder. For instance, as a leaseholder, you could take advantage of reduced prices (and annual ground rent) when the economy is experiencing issues. Alternatively, you might consider increasing your rental yield when you’re the freeholder, leasing the property at astonishing prices.

Buying A Real Estate Factor #4: Amenities

Last, but not least, are the amenities. Amenities will increase the value of your property, because they will benefit those who live in it. Amenities can be within your own property, such as Internet access, extra rooms, etc. Other amenities can be those outside your property, and the benefit they bring will be measured by their proximity to your property.

School:  when the owner or the user of the property has children to care for, being near a school or school district will be of great value, and the property’s value could be perceived to be even higher than it already is. This allows for better deals to be reached both for the buyer and the owner, as they both perceive an increased value.

Supermarket: purchasing of groceries is a necessary, periodical activity in every household. Therefore, living close to a supermarket is very convenient, and it adds value to the property as a result. Living close to multiple supermarkets will only give you more options, and will in turn skyrocket the value. The quality of said supermarkets should also be taken into consideration: not all supermarkets are created equal; they offer different items intended for different people, and it’s only logical that those supermarkets that offer gourmet products will be valued higher as an amenity than those that don’t. Still, even a small convenience store will help adding value to the property.

Police station: increased security always leads to increased value. Having a permanent police presence in the vicinity of the property will not only serve as an added bonus to the property, but it will also dramatically decrease the chance for any criminal activity in that area. Home buyers will be willing to pay extra in exchange for peace of mind.

Sport-related facilities: for those who engage in an active lifestyle, this may well be essential. It’s important to note that these facilities can be part of the property, or they can be external. Gyms, for instance, may be available for use by any owners in a condominium complex; the same goes for swimming pools and tennis courts.

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Other facilities, even though they will be outside the confines of the property, their proximity will still increase its value.  Golf courses, sports clubs and stadiums are examples of sport-related facilities that will increase the value of the property just by being in the same area.

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C.E.O @ The New Savvy
Anna Haotanto is passionate about finance, education, women empowerment and children’s issues. Anna has been featured in CNBC, Forbes, The Straits Times, Business Insider, INC and The Peak Singapore. She was nominated and selected for FORTUNE Most Powerful Women conference in 2016 (Asia) and 2015 (San Francisco, Next Gen). Anna has 10 years of experience in the financial sector and is currently a Director in Tera Capital. Her previous work experience includes positions at Citigroup, United Overseas Bank, a regional role in Business Monitor and a boutique private equity firm based in Shanghai. She graduated from Singapore Management University (Finance and Quantitative Finance).