The Wallace family, initially reluctant to relocate from Hong Kong to Singapore, soon embraced the advantages of their new city, including investment in a spacious family home. The family, from Britain, moved to Singapore in October 2005 after 14 years in Hong Kong, following the relocation of Rosemarie Wallace's employer's regional headquarters. Ian Wallace ran his software firm in Hong Kong which he sold in 2001 and since then has focused on other interests - including property investment. The Wallaces have three children and own three properties in Phuket, Thailand, a ski house in Canada and a ski house in Hokkaido, Japan. 'We had a lovely house in Stanley, overlooking the sea and near to the beach and would happily have stayed there. However, now that we are settled we enjoy Singapore. I certainly don't miss the traffic jams on the road to Stanley and there are great educational opportunities here,' Mr Wallace says. Having lived in rented accommodation in Hong Kong for so long he regretted not buying there years ago, when property was more affordable and was determined not to make that mistake in Singapore. Despite his regrets, he feels that there are advantages to investing in Singapore over Hong Kong. 'The market in Singapore is not as volatile and there is less uncertainty than Hong Kong. Also, you can get more for your money and what you can afford to buy here is more attractive. In Hong Kong it would be very difficult to buy anything you would actually like to live in.' Having recently sold a home in London, he did not need finance and was able to move ahead quickly in the Singapore property market, describing the process as 'very straightforward and transparent'. 'We basically wanted to hedge our bets about staying here long-term. We wanted somewhere that we felt we could live in comfortably as a family but that would be easily rentable if, for any reason, we were not living in it. We therefore wanted somewhere quite central, which was within easy reach of international schools and the central business district. We also wanted somewhere that would provide us with good capital returns, perhaps a place that might be bought 'en bloc' by a developer.' Once they had identified their criteria their agent suggested a number of cluster-townhouse style developments. 'In the end we only looked at two properties before making a decision.' One was a townhouse in Sommerville Park - an older development on a large plot of land. 'The unit we looked at there had not been renovated and needed a lot of work. It had great potential but we did not have the courage to take it on,' Mr Wallace says. The second property which they decided to buy is also in an older (though much smaller) development of only 16 units. Asimont Gardens in District11, just off Barker Road and a short distance from Scotts-Orchard Road and the central business district, has a pool, a playground and underground parking. The unit they chose had been tastefully renovated so they only had to make slight alterations. 'Although the kitchen had been renovated it did not look as if anyone had any intention of actually cooking in it, as there was no cooker or oven. There is a good hawker centre not far away - so maybe the intention was to eat there. We had to rectify that, but apart from that there was not much to do.' After only five to six weeks, the S$2.3million (HK$13 million) property became theirs in October 2006. Mr Wallace describes it as a good family home - 3,060 sqft over four floors. It has four bedrooms and a maid's room with separate entrance. In addition to the shared common facilities, it has a patio garden. Singapore is definitely home for the Wallace family for the foreseeable future. They recently became permanent residents - a process which Mr Wallace says is easy - so whatever happens they can stay in this part of the world. With holidays divided between their home in Phuket and their ski house in Japan, it is easy to see the attraction.