SINGAPORE (EDGEPROP) - Property development company Selo Group is offering prefabricated, luxury villas for landowners in Indonesia. The Singapore-based developer says its modular designed villas deliver sustainable and cost-effective real estate anywhere in Indonesia.
“Managing the process of building a property can be daunting with the number of factors to consider, from hiring builders and contractors to dealing with delays. We take care of all the essentials and offer a seamless path to owning a luxury villa in Indonesia,” says Andrew Corkery, managing partner at Selo Group.
Each villa will be designed with floor-to-ceiling windows and an open layout. The design will include a private pool and deck area, a kitchenette, and spacious living areas. Buyers can choose from studio, one- and two-bedroom options.
The design process starts on a website where buyers can select their preferred villa type, choose any manufacturing upgrades and add-ons, and then pick a preferred assembly option. Selo Group’s prefabricated villas will cost from about US$6,997 psf ($9,537 psf).
Corkery hopes this product will popularise prefabrication construction techniques in Indonesia and alleviate concerns some buyers may have over the quality of this building process. “Some buyers may have a perception that prefabrication construction results in a lower-quality build, but this is not the case. I hope we can convince people that prefabrication is a quality process, and we are manufacturing the components of the high-quality villas in a controlled environment,” he says.
The developer manufactures its prefabricated villa components from a custom facility on the Indonesian island of Lombok. Excess construction material is also recycled on-site to reduce the environmental impact of the construction process. The developer says it typically recycles or re-uses 93% of the construction waste each prefabrication project generates.
Corkery points out that the prefabrication process emphasises risk reduction in terms of quality of materials, construction time, logistics and overall building costs. It differs from traditional methods because each component needs to be modularised to fit into shipping containers. “All the designs for these prefabricated villas can be disassembled and flat packed for easy assembly on site,” says Corkery.
This also reduces the need for logistics and transportation of construction material. The developer says it cuts out 99% of the raw materials that would otherwise need to be delivered to the build site. “As a result of the time and cost savings, most buyers can expect to save about 50% on the overall construction time compared to traditional construction methods. In terms of overall cost, they can also expect savings of about 25%-30%,” says Corkery.
This prefabricated villa construction has attracted the attention of some Singapore and Philippine hotel developers and hospitality brands, especially those looking to build new resorts in relatively remote locations like Lombok, says Corkery. Prefabricated construction helps resort developers keep development costs down, and they tend to favour companies with a successful track record, he says.
He adds that the entire building process for one villa could take six months, but the biggest factor delaying construction in Indonesia remains the quality of transportation networks.
Dealing with the quality of Indonesia’s transportation network has been a challenge Selo Group has had to contend with. This has been the case since Corkery and his investment partner first entered the Indonesian real estate market in 2009. He and his business partner intended to acquire a land bank in Lombok to parcel out and eventually sell to homeowners.
“Lombok’s reputation as a relatively remote location compared to Bali, and the good things we had heard about the natural environment and surf conditions were some of the reasons we wanted to invest there. We were banking on the relatively low land costs and the new international airport that was set to open up there,” says Corkery.
But he was shocked when he first experienced the road conditions in the area. “We were driving to the coastal area that we were looking to invest in. The drive took nearly three hours, and was a completely terrible ride. We said to each other that night that there was no way we were going to buy anything there,” he says.
But their attitudes changed the next morning when they experienced the natural vista from their hilltop location, as well as the beaches and greenery around the area. Corkery and his business partner had been working in financial markets for 10 years at the time, and together they put down an initial investment of a “couple of million dollars” of their own money to acquire the first parcel of land for investment. “We were originally just going to landbank the site, because at that stage we did not have any intention to develop any properties ourselves,” says Corkery.
But most of the foreign buyers who bought land parcels reached out to Corkery for help to find local builders. However, they realised that most of the local construction firms could not meet the building standards that this clientele expected. As a result, Selo Group gradually evolved into a construction company and property development business, and launched a property management arm to help expat owners manage their holiday homes, he says.
“Our business model has evolved over the past 10 years from acquiring land as an investment asset, into an integrated development company that includes land acquisition, architecture design, construction, and property management operations,” says Corkery.
The initial 16ha of land the Selo Group acquired in 2009 has been developed into its flagship Selong Selo Resort, located in Selong Belanak in southern Lombok. The resort boasts 30 completed villas that are fully sold, says Corkery. The site also comprises a restaurant, a resident clubhouse, a fitness centre, a spa, and a kids’ club. In addition, the group offers full rental management of the villas.
Selo Group is developing an adjacent plot of hillside land for at least 20 new landed homes, comprising a mix of studio, one- and two-bedroom luxury villas. These bespoke villas have so far attracted high-net-worth Singaporean and Hong Kong residents who pay US$1 million to US$1.5 million for each hillside property. There are also off-plan villas from US$160,000. Each villa sits on a 15,070 sq ft plot.