Date
22 September 2017
Flats in Tai O (right) are available for sale under the Home Ownership Scheme. The flats may be in a remote area but Tai O does offer the chance to spot a pink dolphin. Photos: okzhuhai.com, sina.com
Flats in Tai O (right) are available for sale under the Home Ownership Scheme. The flats may be in a remote area but Tai O does offer the chance to spot a pink dolphin. Photos: okzhuhai.com, sina.com

In search of a HK$1 mln HK home? Try Tai O

Sea views, room to move and the chance to glimpse a rare pink dolphin are all yours for less than HK$1 million — in Tai O. 

The Home Ownership Scheme will start taking applications from June 11 for 85 flats in the remote village’s Lung Tin Estate. Prices will range between HK$641,000 (US$82,391) and HK$897,000 for flats from 475 to 485 square feet, Apple Daily reported Wednesday.

The prices are within the means but possibly beyond the reach of many potential buyers. Sina news quoted Man Yu-ming, a non-official member of the subsidised housing committee at the Housing Authority, as saying the flats are probably best suited for retirees and it has been difficult to get young workers to take an interest in the flats.

It’s not hard to see why, given the travel involved. It takes about 50 minutes to reach Tung Chung or the airport by bus, and the same amount of time to get to Tuen Mun by ferry. The quickest route to Central is a bus ride to Mui Wo and then a ferry to Central. The return trip home from Tung Chung on holidays can mean waiting in a queue for more than an hour with several hundred other people.

There’s also a premium to pay for buying basic needs in a tourism area. A plate of siu mai dumplings, for example, costs HK$22 while prices for a lunch set start at HK$38. On top of that, most shops shut at 6pm.

Rosa Ho, assistant director of housing subsidies at the Housing Authority, said the Tai O flats are aimed at retirees or young people who work from home.

Ho said the block only had enough spaces for three private cars and buyers wanting to drive to and from the village need Transport Department approval because the road between Tung Chung and Tai O is restricted.

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