IKEA launches IKEA Place, a new app that allows people to virtually place furniture in their home

IKEA announces the launch of IKEA Place, an augmented reality (AR) application that lets people confidently experience, experiment and share how good design transforms any space, such as a home, office, school or studio. From sofas and armchairs to coffee tables, all of the products in IKEA Place are 3D and true to scale so that every choice is just the right size, design and function.

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UOB, HSBC join mortgage war with 3-year fixed-rate packages

DBS no longer sole provider in three-year fixed-rate space; BOC’s package has varying yearly rates; OCBC conspicuous by its absence

SINGAPORE — Banks in Singapore have started a mortgage war, spurred by the lower interest rate for a longer duration, to the delight of the legions of home buyers who are pouring back to a buoyant residential market.

Last week, both United Overseas Bank (UOB) and HSBC launched three-year fixed-rate home-loan packages which until now had been mainly the preserve of DBS Bank, the nation’s largest housing-loan provider. Bank of China (BOC) also has a three-year fixed-rate package but with varying yearly interest rates.

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Structural walls of HDB flats may leave room for flexible layouts

SINGAPORE — Structural walls in the middle of a Housing Board flat may soon be a thing of the past, allowing home owners to make the most of the space they have.

At Woodleigh Glen, a Build-To- Order (BTO) project in Bidadari ready in 2021, all 1,000 units will have their structural beams and columns tucked to the edges, so that residents can reconfigure the internal space according to their needs.

The HDB will erect walls, but residents can hack these down at their own cost. Currently, most BTO flats have walls that are part of a structural wall, making it difficult to have a larger, open space.

An artist’s impression of Woodleigh Glen, a BTO project in Bidadari, where units will have their structural beams and columns tucked to the edges, so residents can reconfigure the internal space. Such flexi layouts were first seen in Skyville@Dawson, but could soon be standard fare (via straitstimes.com)

For example, newlyweds can start off with a flat layout that gives them a larger bedroom or living room. As their family grows, they can erect a wall to form a nursery.

Such flexi layouts were first seen in Skyville@Dawson, whose residents began collecting their keys two years ago.

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Private home sales continue upward climb in July

SINGAPORE: A total of 1,108 private home units – excluding executive condominiums (ECs) – were sold last month on the back of more project launches, according to the latest figures from the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) on Tuesday (Aug 15).

The figure is a 35.1 per cent increase from the 820 units sold in June, which saw stronger-than-expected sales despite it being the school holiday period. Including ECs, property developers sold 2,086 units in July, almost double of June’s 1,064 units.

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Some real estate agents unhappy about PropertyGuru’s impending price hike

SINGAPORE — Local property search portal PropertyGuru’s decision to increase prices for property agents to list on its platform has sparked a backlash among some real estate agents.

A notice sent by PropertyGuru to its subscribers on Monday showed that the prices of its four new agent packages will range from S$880 to S$9,880 per year from Friday (Aug 4).
According to figures publicly available on its website, PropertyGuru has three packages that cost between S$630 and S$2,240 per year. A fourth package, which currently costs S$11,200 per year, is available on its official platform for agents, it said.

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5,200 homes launched in August BTO exercise, first re-offer of balance flats

SINGAPORE: A total of 5,291 flats were put up for sale by the Housing and Development Board (HDB) on Tuesday (Aug 1), and it also marks the launch of the first Re-Offer of Balance Flats (ROF) exercise.

Under the Build-To-Order (BTO) exercise, 3,897 flats were put up for sale, and these range from two-room Flexi to five-room flats. They are spread across three projects in the non-mature towns of Bukit Batok and Sengkang, the housing board said in its press release.

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HDB resale transactions jump 32.5% in Q2, despite prices remaining flat

SINGAPORE — The resale market for Housing and Development Board (HDB) flats saw a jump in the number of transactions last quarter, despite prices remaining mostly unchanged, according to figures released by HDB on Friday (Jul 28).

Resale transactions rose 32.5 per cent in the April to June period, rising from 4,530 to 6,001 transactions. Prices fell by just 0.1 per cent, with the Resale Price Index inching down from 133.9 to 133.7 in the second quarter.

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