Real Estate Glossary: A - M


Available Units
: Completed housing units that are available for physical occupation, including both occupied and unoccupied units. Also known as stock.

Available Floor Space: Completed, rentable space in non-residential properties, excluding common areas, that is available for physical occupation, including both occupied and unoccupied space.


Building Plan Approval (Private Sector Only): The approval granted by the Commissioner of Building Control in respect of building plans and specifications submitted in accordance with the prescribed building regulations in force.

Building Commencement
: Construction of a building project is deemed to have commenced when a permit to commence building works in respect of that building is issued by the Commissioner of Building Control. In the case of a public sector project for which this permit is not required, the construction of the building project is deemed to have commenced when the first tender is invited. Where the contractor is selected by pre-qualification or close tender, the date on which the contract is awarded is used.

Business Park: This refers to areas for non-pollutive industries and businesses that engage in high-technology, research and development, high value-added and knowledge-intensive activities. Science parks where the primary activity is research and development are included in the Business Park category from 3rd Quarter 2002.


Category 1 Office Buildings: Category 1 office buildings are defined as those located in core business areas in Downtown Core and Orchard Planning Area which are relatively modern or recently refurbished, command relatively high rentals and have large floor plate size and gross floor area

Category 2 Office Buildings: These are the remaining office buildings which are not included in Category 1 office buildings.

Caveat: A caveat is usually lodged by the purchaser to protect his/her interest soon after an option to purchase a property is exercised or a sale/purchase agreement is signed. We use information from caveats with "Options exercised" as grounds of claim to compute our property price indices. As the lodgement of caveats is voluntary, and there is usually a time-lag of a few months from the point of purchase of a private residential unit direct from a developer to the lodgement of a caveat for that unit, the transaction database in REALIS may not reflect all the units sold directly by developers.

Central Region: Central Region comprises the following 22 Planning Areas: Downtown Core, Orchard, Marina East, Marina South, Museum, Newton, Outram, River Valley, Rochor, Singapore River, Straits View, Bishan, Bukit Merah, Bukit Timah, Geylang, Kallang, Marine Parade, Novena, Queenstown, Southern Islands, Tanglin and Toa Payoh.

Core Central Region: It comprises postal districts 9,10, 11, Downtown Core and Sentosa.

Central Area
: It comprises the following 11 Planning Areas: Outram, Museum, Newton,River Valley, Singapore River, Marina South,Marina East, Straits View, Rochor, Orchard and Downtown Core.

Change in Available Stock: The increase (or decrease) in the existing stock between two consecutive quarters. Increase in stock is primarily due to the completion of new buildings or the addition of space in existing buildings. Decrease in stock is usually due to the demolition of existing buildings or change of use.

Change in Occupied Stock: The increase (or decrease) between two consecutive quarters in the number of residential dwelling units or the amount of floor space in non-residential properties which is physically occupied.

Completed but Unsold Units: Unsold units in completed residential projects with valid Housing Developer Sale Licences, including units which are held by developer for rental.

Completed Properties: A building project is deemed completed when the Temporary Occupation Permit (TOP) or Certificate of Statutory Completion (CSC) in respect of that building is issued by the Commissioner of Building Control. Public sector projects are considered completed the certificate of completion is issued by the architect or engineer in charge of the project. Completed properties are referred to as the existing stock.


Development Guide Plan: A detailed plan which provides a clear direction for the development and use of land specifying land use zoning, height and development intensity. It shows the development potential of all land parcels in the area clearly and enables developers to have a good idea of what they can or cannot build on the land. 


Enbloc Transaction: Refers to the sale of all the units within a housing development to a single party or a consortium/joint venture, who has the intention to redevelop the site into a new development. The enbloc transactions are first identified from caveat data in REALIS when it is observed that caveats are lodged on all the units within a housing development, usually with prices higher than the prices reported for past transactions in the same project or prices of similar projects in the vicinity in the same reference period. These enbloc transactions are then checked against an internal database of enbloc projects before being finalised as enbloc transactions in REALIS.

Executive Condominium: A new type of housing introduced by the government in 1995 to meet the housing aspirations of the growing number of graduates and young professionals. It is a strata-titled apartment built by the private sector and has facilities comparable to a private condominium. However, there are some restrictions attached to it in the initial years such as eligibility conditions (similar to those for HDB flats) and a minimum occupation period before the flat can be sold.

Expected Year of Final TOP: The year in which the whole project will be given the Temporary Occupation Permit. The expected TOP year is given by developers or architects. Projects with 'na' mean consent for release was not given by the developer.


Factory Space: This refers to the space used or intended to be used for industrial purposes, comprising buildings or part of the buildings used for the manufacturing, altering, repairing, ornamenting, finishing, cleaning, washing, packing, canning, breaking-up or demolition of any article or its parts and the processing and treatment of minerals. Factory buildings are further classified into multiple-user factory, single-user factory and Business Park.

Fringe Area: This is the area within Central Region, excluding the Central Area. It comprises the following 11 Planning Areas : Bukit Merah, Bukit Timah, Queenstown, Kallang, Bishan, Marine Parade, Geylang, Toa Payoh, Tanglin, Novena and Southern Islands.


Government Land Sales Projects: Projects that are developed on land sold by the Government through the Government Land Sales (GLS) programme. Sites are usually sold on 99-year leases for commercial, hotel and private residential development whereas leases for industrial sites are usually for 60 years.

Gross Floor Area: Covered floor space (whether within or outside a building and whether or not enclosed) measured between party walls including thickness of external walls and any open area used for commercial purposes.

Gross Lettings: Both paid and complimentary lettings of hotel rooms as enumerated at midnight.


Hotel Rooms: Rooms specifically designed and constructed or substantially adapted to be used to accommodate persons for the purpose of gain or profit, with provision for a bar and restaurant.

Housing Developer Sale Licence
: The licence that a developer has to obtain if it wishes to sell units in residential projects of more than 4 units before they are completed. This licence is issued by the Controller of Housing and is one of the pre-requisites for sale. Another pre-requisite is the approval of the building plans of the development.


Industrial Properties: This refers to factory space and warehouse space.




Landed Property: This refers to detached houses, semi-detached houses, terrace houses, townhouses, strata bungalows and cluster housing.


Median Price Per Square Metre: For detached, semi-detached and terrace houses, the median price per square metre is computed based on their land area. For strata sub-divided properties, such as apartments, condominiums, cluster housing and townhouses, the median price per square metre is computed based on their strata floor area.

Multiple User Factory: This refers to a factory building that is capable of being strata subdivided and thus could be used by multiple users
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Janet Fong
*SNR Associate Director, CEA BOUQUET JAN/FEB 2016
CEA Licence No.:
L3009250K / R019968D
+(65) 9642 0875