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Shophouses sold like pancakes at auctions as buyers dodge stamp duties


Investors are shying away from residential properties.

The number of shops and shophouses put up for auction more than doubled in the first quarter, according to a report by Knight Frank.

Surprisingly, the shops and shophouses sector beat the residential segment in terms of successful deals. Four shops out of the 27 units put up for auction were successfully sold, translating to a remarkable success rate of 14.8%.

This is a far cry from the residential sector's success rate of just 2.4%, with 2 properties transacted out of 85 lisitngs. For the residential sector, this marked the second consecutive quarter of decline and represented the lowest success rate since Q4 2013, when no residential properties were sold.

According to Knight Frank, this also marked the first time since Q2 2014 that the residential sector was not the top pick in the auction market despite it retaining the top position in terms of the number of listings.

"The shift in buyers’ preference from residential properties to shops & shophouses or industrial properties could be due to the tendency to avoid the Additional Buyers’ Stamp Duty, which only applies to the residential sector,” Knight Frank said.

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