10 out of 14 stalls quit S$40 million Yishun coffeeshop as rent set at S$10,000/month

There are new tenants secured for the vacated stalls though.

Belmont Lay | September 08, 2022, 08:11 PM

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The coffeeshop located at Block 848 Yishun Street 81, which changed hands for S$40 million, has raised rental costs, with tenants saying some stalls are being rented out at over S$10,000 a month.

8 World News reported that at least 10 of the 14 stalls have thrown in the towel and left.

Coffeeshop to undergo renovation

The coffeeshop was reported to have been in the midst of being resold some time in May 2022.

It is scheduled to undergo renovation from Oct. 1, after the deal is finalised.

According to Lianhe Zaobao, it is slated to reopen on Nov. 1.

Currently, five of the stalls have already vacated the premises, according to a Facebook post by a customer.

The rest are still operating until they have to move.

The stalls will all have to vacate the premises by Sep. 26 in time for the renovation.

Only three or four of the stalls are reported to be interested in coming back to continue their business in the coffeeshop after renovations, as per 8 World News.

Reason for moving

So far, only one stall that moved out has indicated it is setting up shop elsewhere at a nearby coffeeshop.

The owner of Hai Nam Zai, which sells char kway teow, said he rented half a stall previously for three years, with the latest rental at S$7,000 monthly, which includes the cost of utilities.

According to him, the stall which he was located in had its rental raised to about S$8,000, which is an S$1,000 increase.

He said he found the increase acceptable, but wanted to move to another unit as he no longer wanted to be next to the BBQ chicken wings stall due to the heat.

However, the other stall that he had in mind was already rented out to someone else for over S$10,000 a month.

He told Zaobao that he would have to sign a three-year contract with the coffeeshop operator if he continued to stay at Block 848.

Other coffeeshop charges lower rent

He also disclosed that his move to the nearby Block 807 coffeeshop would see him pay cheaper rent at only S$4,000 per month, excluding the cost of utilities.

One of the stallholders, who sells traditional peanut pancakes, said the decision to stay on was due to the business having already operated at the same location for more than 20 years.

The stall wants to continue to serve regular customers, it was disclosed, with the stallholder also saying that the rental increase was still acceptable.

The BBQ seafood stallholder is also staying, telling Zaobao that one of the reasons for his decision is the loyal customers who have patronised his stall since he started operating at the coffeeshop 15 years ago.

He added that he lives nearby, and feels that it's "acceptable" even if the rental for his stall goes up by S$2,000.

However, he will consider raising prices for his food by S$0.50 to S$1 to offset the increase in rental.

The Facebook post by the frequent coffeeshop goer in Yishun showed exactly which stalls have since vacated the premises.

The stalls that left include the ones that sell chicken rice, claypot and herbal soup, western food, and popiah.

The claypot and herbal soup stallholder told Zaobao that he moved out because he would have to pay an 50 per cent increase in rental as he wanted a better stall in the middle of the coffeeshop, which was understandably more expensive than his former unit.

He is currently considering relocating to Tampines.

According to Zaobao, other factors that led to their decision to move out include the lack of staff.

Rent will be raised using other coffeeshops' rental as reference

The new proprietor of the Yishun coffeeshop is Chang Cheng Group, one of Singapore's largest F&B groups.

The group's chairman Ricky Kok has pledged not to raise food prices when he officially takes over on Oct. 1, 2022.

He has said he is aware that rising prices have been causing stress for many.

8 World News reported that he had said previously it was inevitable to raise the rent, but he would make an assessment with reference to the rent of nearby coffeeshops but did not go into details.

The area that this coffeeshop is in has three other coffeeshops in the vicinity.

Top photos via Shin Min Daily News & Kong Jeanie