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Thread: Rooms with a View

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    Default Rooms with a View

    June 23, 2007

    Rooms with a View





    ST PHOTO: AZIZ HUSSIN


    RETIREE P.R. Sharma, 81, has a view from his 20th storey living room that many Singaporeans would envy.

    His five-room HDB point-block flat at block 29 Marine Crescent overlooks East Coast Park and the city skyline in the distance.

    He can even see the sea from a side window and from the bedroom and living room.

    He gets to enjoy sunrise from his flat, watch planes land and take off from nearby Changi airport and count the number of tankers dotting the sea off East Coast Park.

    He paid $35,500 for the flat in 1974, and says he was offered about $900,000 for it nearly 20 years ago.

    Property agents say the current selling rate for such a flat is $500,000.

    He adds that even if he was offered $1 million today, he would not sell.

    Read the full story in Saturday's edition of The Straits Times.

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    Default Re: Rooms with a View

    June 23, 2007

    Rooms with a view



    Madam Yeo Wee Geck (above), 85, on her 20th-storey Marine Parade unit. She can catch the sunrise as well as enjoy the sea view from her flat. ST PHOTO: AZIZ HUSSIN



    Block 29, Marine Crescent

    RETIREE P.R. Sharma, 81, has a view from his 20th-storey flat that many Singaporeans would envy.

    His five-room HDB point-block flat overlooks East Coast Park and the city skyline in the distance.

    He can even see the sea from a side window and from the bedroom and living room.

    He gets to enjoy the sunrise from his flat, watch planes land and take off from nearby Changi airport and count the number of tankers dotting the sea off East Coast Park.

    He paid $35,500 for the flat in 1974, and says he was offered about $900,000 for it nearly 20 years ago. Property agents say the current selling rate for such a flat is $500,000.

    He adds that even if he was offered $1 million today, he would not sell it.

    He gets about three flyers a day from agents looking for sellers but he throws them in the bin without even looking at them.

    'It is not a question of money. I like living here and will not leave,' he says of the convenient location. He enjoys going to Marine Cove, across the East Coast Parkway from his block, for meals and takes walks in the park.

    After living there for more than 30 years, he no longer lingers by the window for the sea view, unlike when the family first moved in.

    Still, whenever he visits his four children who live in condominiums elsewhere, he feels a sense of happiness when he returns to his flat.

    'I always feel good that it has such a great view,' he says.

    'It is so breezy here. I won't move out'

    Madam Yeo Wee Geck, 85, on her 20th-storey Marine Parade unit. She can catch the sunrise as well as enjoy the sea view from her flat



    Block 2C Upper Boon Keng Road

    DURING last year's National Day parade, friends and family crowded into Mr Lucas Tan and Ms Teo Ee Mei's new five-room HDB flat.

    Their 27th-storey flat gave unblocked views and they could see the entire fireworks display during the event.

    'The fly-past was about 5m away from my window,' says Mr Tan, 34, an engineer.

    They will still be able to see the fireworks display when the parade moves to Marina Bay this year. From their living room, the couple can see the National Stadium, the Kallang Basin area, Marina Bay, the Singapore Flyer and Shenton Way.

    They were living in their own HDB flat in the neighbouring Boon Keng estate and chose this block and unit so they could have a panoramic view from the living room. They paid $340,000 for it last year.

    Mr Tan's interior-designer brother custom-made a high dining table so that the couple could enjoy the view when having meals.

    Other perks: The Kallang MRT station is a five-minute walk away and the flat is close to other amenities such as a market.

    The couple have received offers of up to $550,000 from interested buyers and property agents. 'But I don't think we will sell, we like our flat too much,' says Mr Tan.



    Block 721 Bedok Reservoir Road

    WHEN contractor Ho Kai Shian, 37, was living in Tampines, the view from his fifth-storey flat was that of the neighbouring block.

    Since moving to Bedok Reservoir in 2000, he has enjoyed views of water and greenery from his study in his HDB maisonette on the 14th floor. He lives with his wife Veron, 35, a master's student, and their daughter Sueann, three.

    Mr Ho says they bought the flat for $468,000 in 2000 because of the view of Bedok Reservoir across the street and Tampines beyond that.

    He adds that they like the unit's proximity to the reservoir so they can go jogging and kayaking. Sueann also gets to watch dragon boat races at the reservoir from her bedroom window.

    Mr Ho does not know how much his flat is worth now, but has heard from property agents that the rate for other units in the same block is about $490,000.

    But he is staying put because the family likes the space and privacy the corner unit offers.



    Block 289A Bukit Batok Street 25

    HOME owners Alice Tan and Johnny Ang say the view of the lush greenery from their 15th-floor resale executive HDB flat was not the main criterion when they were looking for a new home.

    Ms Tan, a project manager, says they were looking for a flat with a wide and bright lift lobby, a separate service yard from the kitchen for drying clothes and a unit that would get the morning sun to freshen up the whole house.

    'This flat met all our criteria and it came with an added bonus ? the view of two nature reserves,' says Ms Tan, 30. From the living room, the flat overlooks the tree tops of the Bukit Timah and Bukit Batok nature reserves.

    They paid $433,800 for it and moved in last November. For that price, they could have bought a private apartment but 'friends know why we spent so much when they see the view we get', says Mr Ang, 32, a consultant.

    The couple have received many flyers from property agents and interested buyers. They have heard that buyers are willing to pay from $480,000 to $500,000 for a flat in the same block, but there are no sellers.

    'We need to sell for at least $500,000 to recover our purchase and renovations costs,' says Ms Tan. However, the couple say that with such a good view and the tranquil environment, they have no plans to sell just yet.



    Block 4B Boon Tiong Road

    WHEN communications manager Raymond Lim, 28, was searching for a family home, he picked Tiong Bahru because 'property is all about location'.

    His four-room HDB flat, which he shares with his wife So Young, 30, a housewife, and 15-month-old son Ryan (above), is across the road from the famed Tiong Bahru market and a 10-minute drive from town. They bought the 20th-storey new unit for $306,000 in 2005 for the unobstructed views from the unit's front and back.

    From the living room, they get views of the flats in Bukit Ho Swee and Great World City. From the kitchen and bedroom, they see the pre-war flats and shophouses in Tiong Bahru with Pearl Bank apartments and Shenton Way in the horizon.

    Mr Lim says he is almost certain that the views will be permanent as the neighbouring low-rise flats have been gazetted for conservation.

    He is unsure of the value of his flat now because it is less than five years old and cannot be sold under HDB's rules.

    But he has no intention of selling it even after five years, when he can.

    'The location is just too good,' says Mr Lim, who used to live in Hougang and had to face massive jams to get to work in town.



    Block 81 Toa Payoh Lorong 4

    HOME owners Marcus Lee and Lynn Heng have no plans to leave their five-bedroom HDB flat because of its convenient location.

    'We're opposite Toa Payoh Central with the bus interchange and Toa Payoh MRT station nearby,' says Mr Lee, 30, director of an IT trading firm.

    The view, he says, is a bonus.

    It is certainly impressive. On a clear day from the 18th-storey flat bought from the resale market, the Lees can see the National Stadium, the Swissotel The Stamford and the CBD area.

    They can also see the fireworks display during National Day.

    'The view is unblocked and because the unit is so high, it is also much cooler,' says Mr Lee.

    The couple bought it for $452,000 and moved in last year. They spent nearly $100,000 on renovations.

    The flat's convenient location and high floor make it a hot pick among buyers, but the couple have no plans to sell, nor have they received any offers yet.

    Mr Lee says that if they do sell, it will be at a price that is profitable after factoring in the purchase and renovation costs.

    'It would be a sum that no one would be willing to pay,' he says.

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