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Thread: I'll queue 5 days to buy condo

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    heckler & koch
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    Default I'll queue 5 days to buy condo

    I'll queue 5 days to buy condo

    Launch on Friday, but more than 50 people already in line for new units by this morning

    By Dawn Chia

    April 04, 2007



    CALL him kiasu, but Mr Tan Thong believes that the early bird catches the worm.


    Never mind the fact that he will have to wait five long days in the open, exposed to the elements.


    The 66-year-old retired businessman is willing to wait, rain or shine, just to get his dream condominium unit in Meyer Road.


    The development is only due to be launched on Friday, but MrTan has been waiting outside the site since 7am yesterday.


    Yes, the condo queues are back - this time starting five days ahead of the scheduled launch date.


    The latest craze is for a 24-storey freehold condominium, [email protected], developed by CapitaLand.


    At around 11pm yesterday, The New Paper received a tip-off that there was a queue of about 20 people outside the yet-to-be-built development.

    LONG LINE


    When we got there around 11.30pm, the queue had swelled to more than35. And by 1am this morning, more than 50 people had joined in.


    Mr Tan was first in line.


    He told The New Paper in Mandarin: 'I want to buy a unit for my children. It's an investment and something I can leave behind for them.'


    His two children, who are married, like the location, and that made him even more determined to get a unit there.
    Prices are said to range from $1,400 psf to $1,800 per square foot, excluding penthouses, reported The Business

    Times.


    Sea-facing penthouses, of about 4,000 sq ft, are believed to be priced around $2,100 to $2,200 psf. One penthouse, of about 4,100 sq ft, is said to be priced at around $9million.


    Mr Tan came prepared with foldable chairs, umbrellas, newspapers, bread and bottles of water.


    His son even brought a sleeping bag for him when he popped by after work to see his father..


    Mr Tan, who lives in a HDB flat in Pasir Ris, said he went home for a quick shower before returning to his spot.

    TAKING TURNS


    He said: 'I have two friends who come and take turns to help me reserve my spot here if I have to leave temporarily.
    'Luckily, the weather is good today - it's slightly breezy and the sky is clear.'


    Not everyone was queueing to buy a unit for themselves or their family.


    Some teenagers were employed by housing agents to stand or sit (or sleep) in line just so they can retain a spot in the first few places.


    Polytechnic student Raj, 19, was one of them.
    He was sitting on a piece of cardboard with two friends.
    Lining their 'space' were a few bottles of soft drinks and potato chips, courtesy of an agent friend who employed them.


    It was part of the 'welfare', they said with a grin.
    Raj said: 'It was a last-minute decision to come here.
    'But since we're having our holidays, it's an easy way to make a quick buck. With friends, time will pass very quickly.'


    Their 'welfare' also included the use of the toilet in an apartment nearby.


    But others did not have similar luxuries, having been engaged by different agents. They had to walk to a nearby petrol station to use the washroom if they had to.
    But for the money - which can range between $100 and $150 a day - the walk and wait was worth the while.
    For others, like Mr Casper Ong, going it alone was no problem at all.


    He made friends with some of the teenagers and early 20-somethings who were also employed to stand in line.
    Mr Ong, 22, said: 'We play card games, or eat and drink to while away the time. It's quite a good way to make money since I haven't found a full-time job.'


    For those in the queue, their goal was simple - stay in line and get rewarded, be it with a unit or some cash.
    But for residents in the area, like poly student Liu Jiarong, 19, it was more of an 'eye-opener'.


    He said: 'I've lived here for eight years, and I've never seen a queue like this.


    'It's quite an eye-opener what people will do to buy a house.'
    Last edited by heckler & koch; 06-04-07 at 15:18.

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