At a glance: Always wanted to live in a quiet neighbourhood? You’ve come to the right place. Lentor Modern is located at Lentor, which is known as a sleepy, albeit affluent, town. But while somewhat pedestrian, its location right next to the MRT and the future commercial entities within will mean a level of convenience not often found in other developments. We check out why it’s worth taking a look at this mixed-use development.
|Project Name||Lentor Modern|
|Property Type||Mixed-used development|
|Developers||GLLD Pte Ltd (Unit of Guocoland Limited)|
|District||D26 – Mandai / Upper Thomson|
|Number of Blocks||3|
|Land Size (sqm)||17, 279.9|
|Expected Date Of TOP||June 2024|
|Nearest MRT Station||Lentor on the Thomson-East Coast Line|
|Primary Schools Within 1 km (estimated, actual|
distance will be determined by block)
|• Anderson Primary School (~10-min walk)|
• CHIJ St Nicholas Girls’ School (~5-min drive)
• Mayflower Primary School (5-min drive)
|Nearby International Schools||• The Grange Institution (~6-min drive)|
• HSFE International School (~10-min drive)
If you are looking for an up-and-coming neighbourhood to live in, you might want to consider Lentor. There has been a ton of activity in the area of late, which is a departure from its usual repute as a sleepy (although affluent) locale.
Kicking things off, we have the Lentor MRT station. Station doors officially opened in August 2021, where it is now part of the still-yet-to-be-completed Thomson-East Coast Line. Then there’s Lentor Modern, the subject of today’s review, which was sold as a GLS site to a subsidiary unit of GuocoLand at $784.1 million, or $1,204 per square foot per plot ratio (psf ppr).
We’ll dig a bit deeper with regards to the pricing later in the analysis. For now, we are turning to Lentor Modern’s main selling points: its location right next to the MRT station and the fact that it’s also a mixed-use development with commercial entities located on the first floor. If you were worried about the area’s lack of amenities, Lentor Modern’s going to solve all that.
This Lentor area used to be primarily landed housing enclaves. But sites are slowly being freed up and being built as high-rise residences. Besides Lentor Modern, we also have another GLS site at Lentor Hills Road (Parcel A)—located right next to Lentor Modern—that was awarded to a joint venture GuocoLand is also involved in. The winning bid was much lower than Lentor Modern’s at $586.59 million, which works out to a land rate of $1,060 psf ppr.
Nearby, two other sites were recently released for tender. Bids are expected to close in September 2022. These are located at Lentor Central and Lentor Hills Road (Parcel B), the exact locations of which you can see at the map below. A third site at Lentor Gardens is currently placed on the reserved list, and will only launch when a successful application with an acceptable price for the site is made.
The four sites have the potential to add about 1,900 homes in the area, which will see this sleepy town waking up a bit. But with so many upcoming sites in the area, why should you consider Lentor Modern?
1. It’s at the centre of convenience
Lentor Modern’s the only development in the area that is linked directly to the Lentor MRT station, and there’s likely going to be sheltered access so you don’t have to worry about inclement weather. If that doesn’t scream convenience, we don’t know what does.
Located on the Thomson-East Coast Line, Lentor MRT station will take you just 3 stops to Woodlands, which not only allows you to hop onto the North-South Line but is also a burgeoning commercial and industrial node and a gateway into Johor Bahru, so you are likely to get a substantial share of tenants who are interested to stay near these areas.
Besides Woodlands, Lentor MRT station will eventually be able to take you directly to Orchard station, Singapore’s main shopping belt, in 9 stops, once the next phase of the Thomson-East Coast Line is ready. The station’s also 4 stops to the Circle Line and 6 stops to the Downtown Line, so getting around Singapore is really quite trouble-free.
Boosting connectivity in the area and cutting travel time to the city is the upcoming North-South Corridor (NSC), running along Lentor Avenue nearby. Set to be Singapore’s 11th expressway, the NSC will also comprise cycling routes and dedicated bus lanes and will run from Woodlands all the way to the Marina Bay area.
Speaking of doorstep convenience, Lentor Modern will also house a number of commercial entities within the development on the first storey. The commercial entities will potentially consist of a supermarket, childcare facilities as well as other retail and F&B shops. That’s music to the ears of anyone living around here, since this area isn’t known to have much of anything.
Currently, the only considerable amenity around the area is the Ang Mo Kio 628 market and hawker centre, and even then it’s located a good 13-min walk away. No major malls within walking distance either. The nearest malls, AMK Hub and Thomson Plaza, are a 9- and 10-min drive away respectively.
The downside to being at the centre of it all (in this area anyway) is that you will likely see relatively higher foot traffic. So living at Lentor Modern’s definitely not going to be as private or quiet as the other developments located further away. Ultimately, it really boils down to what you prefer. But if you are thinking of rental investment, amenities and convenience will more often than not be favoured over peace and quiet among tenants.
2. Developer repute and a design emphasis on greenery
Having GuocoLand as the developer (or a part of) is definitely a pretty big deal. They have a solid reputation and a residential portfolio that is plenty extensive with a number of them located in prime locales. One of their latest projects, the Guoco Midtown integrated development along Beach Road, fetched a ton of buzz back when it was first announced.
Like Lentor Modern, Guoco Midtown’s a mixed-use one, but one that is set on a larger scale comprising premium offices, commercial villages and enclaves alongside residences that are designed as home offices. The mega project and their handling of it should assuage concerns about how they will manage Lentor Modern.
As with Guoco Midtown, we foresee the developers taking a vested interest in the commercial entities in Lentor Modern, being the only conveniences in the area at the moment. So it’s likely the mix of shops will be a thoughtfully planned one. Because of the neighbourhood’s general affluence though, we reckon the commercial entities are going to be targeted at a higher-end market.
In terms of design, there are already plans in place to focus on a biophilic design for Lentor Modern because of the surrounding area’s greenery and parks, including the upcoming Hillock Park and Linear Park. But it’s also in line with GuocoLand’s emphasis on greenery in their ‘Modern’ projects—Midtown Modern and Martin Modern.
Upcoming Midtown Modern is cleverly inundated with lush greenery and landscaped areas amidst its twin towers, where the green spaces will feature almost 200 varieties of plants. There will be thematic gardens and private gardens just for residents and a large lawn for sprawling. Martin Modern’s in the same spirit. While encompassing a brutalist form of architecture, it is really set in a garden setting, with 80% of the space devoted to 15 gardens and lawns that are decked out in over 200 species of tropical trees and plants located at various levels.
If Lentor Modern’s going to be anything like these two developments, it will be a double dose of greenery outside and within the development.
As we mentioned earlier in the article, GuocoLand’s also involved in one of the upcoming sites at Lentor Hills Road, which fronts the upcoming Hillock Park. This may mean future integrations or enhancements that will benefit both the developments owing to their proximity to one another.
3. Potentially unblocked views and shorter waiting time
One of the other advantages of the Lentor Modern site compared with most of the other neighbouring sites is that it has the potential to have units with relatively unblocked views seeing as it’s currently facing the Florissa Park landed housing enclave, all of which are around 3 storeys tall.
Depending on how the site and blocks are arranged at Lentor Modern, certain stacks and units may be looking across this landed housing enclave.
Plus, as one of the first few new developments launching in the area, it will likely be the first one to be ready if you are looking for a new built with a shorter waiting time. The TOP date looks to be in June 2024.
When will it launch and how much will the units at Lentor Modern go for?
Lentor Modern is expected to launch in September 2022. Pricing wise, with a land rate of $1,204 psf ppr—a record price for an OCR (outside central region) site—analysts have estimated selling prices of around $1,950 – $2,050 psf. So it’s pretty pricey for an OCR project. If we look at the median transaction prices for D26 in Q1 2022, it’s $1,347.50 psf based on the latest PropertyGuru Singapore Property Market Index (PMI). But we are seeing a ton of growth and potential for D26. Between Q1 and Q2 this year, it registered one of the greatest QoQ growth compared with other districts at 16.26%.
If we compare Lentor Modern’s indicative prices with new OCR launches such as AMO Residence, prices would seem fairly reasonable. Average prices for D20’s AMO Residence, based on a land rate of $1,118 psf ppr, went for around $2,100 psf, with starting prices at $1,890 psf. While centrally located at Ang Mo Kio, AMO Residence isn’t quite near the MRT as Lentor Modern is though, with its nearest MRT station, Mayflower, a good 12-min walking distance away. Still, it sold 98% of its units during its first launch.
Prospective buyers will do well to also take a look at the Land Parcel A site at Lentor Hills Road, because of its close proximity to Lentor Modern and the fact that GuocoLand is also part of the team of developers.
With a land rate that is lower at $1,060 psf, there is a chance the selling price for the Parcel A site will be set lower between $1,800 to $1,900 psf. But because it’s a stone’s throw away from Lentor Modern and its accompanying amenities, GuocoLand may choose to enjoy the additional margins to keep prices at Lentor Modern competitive. It remains to be seen how the developers will play this one out.
Right now, there are few comparisons for Lentor Modern, with most of the residential plots in the immediate area still yet to be sold or launched. But there are a couple of resale options in the area we can look at:
|Tenure||Completed||Average transacted prices (psf)|
|Seasons Park||99-year leasehold||1997||$966|
*Based on 2020 data
As you can see, the freehold value does hold out a bit better, as expected. Do keep in mind that these three developments are all relatively of age. Even the youngest The Calrose is already 15 years old. With Thomson Grove, the transacted price we indicated above is based on a single sale in 2020. Since then, there hasn’t been much movement, likely because of some ‘noise’ about an en bloc sale.
Supply in this Lentor area looks to be high in the more distant future, with plenty of residential plots and a potential en bloc freeing up even more land. It does mean more competition for you, but it will definitely help to boost the area and bring up overall property prices.
Looking at Lentor Modern’s rentability
We’ve talked a bit about this area’s rentability earlier, but here’s a deeper dive into it. Lentor Modern’s proximity to Woodlands, a popular rental district and an up-and-coming major commercial and industrial node, particularly at Woodlands North Coast, means it could potentially benefit from a spillover of rental demand.
This will be further augmented with the completion of the RTS line, a shuttle train service between JB and the Woodlands North MRT station along the Thomson-East Coast Line, just 4 stops away from Lentor MRT.
Industrial sites and commercial nodes around the area, particularly in Ang Mo Kio and Tagore, will also help to boost rental demand for Lentor Modern. Employees at Seletar Aerospace Park, a 10-min drive away, may also consider the Lentor area when picking a place to rent.
In terms of rental income, here’s a look at some figures, based on latest rental transactions data: