CONDOMINIUM developers in Singapore have been in the spotlight lately.
They've been trying to outshine their competitors by launching offerings with more posh and exotic facilities, attracting buyers to their developments like bees to honey.
But, while unique facilities certainly add the wow factor to projects, buyers often forget that this means they would have to fork out higher-than-usual maintenance fees each month - even if they don't utilise them.
Each unit in most mass-market private condominiums is charged around $200 to $350 each month for maintenance. For luxury-end condominiums, such fees can even go above $1,000.
Property analysts said that maintenance fees for condominiums have been increasing over the last few years and the trend is expected to continue. This is not only due to facilities of better quality, but also due to additional material and manpower costs.
However, My Paper found that one newly-built condominiums is bucking this trend.
Maintenance fees at the Alexis in Alexandra Road, which comes with many facilities, are as low as $59 each month, excluding carpark fees - quite possibly the lowest for a private residential development here.
Developer EC Prime said that seasonal parking, at an additional $85 per parking space, is optional, as the development is a stone's throw away from Queenstown MRT station.
At such a low rate, this private condominium's maintenance fees is highly competitive, even compared to what HDB dwellers pay.
Analysts estimate that those living in a relatively-new four-room HDB flat, for example, pay between $50 and $55 per month in conservancy charges, not including carpark charges.
A freehold development with 293 units, the Alexis was launched in February 2009 and gained its temporary-occupation permit (TOP) around the middle of last year.
Common facilities there, while by no means exotic, are pretty decent. They include a gymnasium, a steam room, barbecue areas, heated spa pods, a hydro-jet pool, a sky deck and a 75m-long sky pool.