19 March 2019
Prices of small apartment units continue to scale new peaks in Hong Kong. Photo: wikipedia
Prices of small apartment units continue to scale new peaks in Hong Kong. Photo: wikipedia

It’s just crazy! 147-sq-ft public home unit goes for HK$1.7 mln

This can happen only in Hong Kong!

A public housing apartment measuring just 147 square feet fetched as much as HK$1.7 million, or nearly HK$12,000 per square foot, in a secondary market transaction recently. 

Two sisters in their 40s paid the absurd price for the apartment in Wah Ming Estate in Fanling in New Territories, Apple Daily reported Friday, noting that the deal marks a new high in per-square-foot price for public housing units in the city.

With the average income for Hong Kong people standing at HK$13,500 a month last year, it means the public housing unit would have required 10.5 years income for an average person, the paper noted.

It was the second time that a public housing unit has fetched over HK$10,000 per square foot in the city, after a previous record for a unit in Kwong Yuen Estate in Shatin.

According to the real estate agency which brokered the Wah Ming Estate apartment deal, the new owners intend to let out the flat for HK$6,700 per month, which is 40 percent higher than the existing rent.

According to land registry records, the same flat was sold for HK$48,500 back in June 1999. The first owner subsequently sold the flat for HK$700,000 in May 2011. Four months after that, the apartment changed hands again, this time for HK$1.1 million.

Coming back to the present market, the owner of another tiny apartment — a 160-square-foot unit – at Fung Tak Estate in Wong Tai Sin is asking for HK$2.3 million, or over HK$14,000 per square foot, the report said.

If a deal goes through at the price, it will mark a yet another record in the cost per square foot at public housing units in the city.

Shih Wing-ching, co-founder of Centaline Property Agency, said that while it is possible that prices of small flats could go up another ten percent, prospective buyers should exercise caution as the price surge is near its end. Prices could go downward in the second half of this year, he said.

According to Shih, the market would need 20,000 new residential units per year to strike a balance between supply and demand. Property prices will also hinge on the pace of US rate hikes and other economic indicators.

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