Published April 19, 2006

Coming soon: condo looks with HDB resale flat pricing


THE first public housing project under the Housing and Development Board (HDB) Design Build and Sell Scheme (DBSS) will have a slick glass facade normally associated with private residential condominiums but a unit in it could be sold for a little more than the price of an ordinary resale HDB flat.

The pilot DBSS site near Tampines MRT Station went to Sim Lian Land for $82.22 million or $113.67 per square foot per plot ratio in January.

Speaking at the official handing over ceremony of the DBSS site yesterday, Sim Lian Group executive chairman Kuik Ah Han reiterated that it would 'take into account the price of HDB resale flats', when the group launches the 612-unit development for sale in the third quarter of this year.

A quick check with Propnex chief executive Mohamed Ismail reveals that a 1,200 sq ft five-room resale flat in Tampines currently sells for around $350,000 or about $280 psf.

Mr Mohamed added that he did not expect the DBSS development to be priced beyond the bottom range of private developments and executive condominium which is around $400 psf as it will not come with any condominium facilities.

The Sim Lian Group executive chairman did not want to commit himself to a launch price but pointed out that material costs have risen in recent months. 'We are in the construction business as well but will still pay the same price for materials,' he added.

He also highlighted design features like bay windows, full glass and picture frame windows, and balconies that will likely add a premium to the price.

Interestingly, he did say that the development, which will comprise four and five-room units, was not expected to reap big profits and projected a profit margin less than the 10-15 per cent for private residential developments.

Saying that it was more important to create jobs for Sim Lian's 100-strong staff, he said: 'As a developer, you have to do whatever you can do.' Still, the development, which is well located near amenities, is likely to sell well.