$808,080 HDB sale hits the roof

$808,080 HDB sale hits the roof

Just how much are people willing to pay for an HDB flat?

Mr Freddy Choo paid $808,080 for his executive maisonette in Tampines.

Worth every cent, he said.

The price includes a whopping $168,080 in cash over valuation (COV).

That's among the largest COVs paid since the financial crisis in 2008, said real estate agents.

One of the previous reported highs was about $200,000 for an HUDC flat in Shunfu. It was sold at $1.1 million in July, 2010.

Mr Choo, 46, said he was willing to pay a premium as his new home was renovated just five years ago and came fully-furnished.

The real estate agent had come across the unit, on the eighth storey of Block 146, Tampines Avenue 5, in April.

The 150 sq m flat is two bus stops away from the Tampines MRT station and Tampines Mall.

Mr Choo said it was valued at $640,000.

The median resale price of executive flats in Tampines was $640,000 as of the second quarter of 2012, according to HDB's website.

The father of two said the final amount - $808,080 - was also an auspicious number.

It is the highest price paid for an executive HDB flat in Tampines in the past year, according to HDB's website which shows transacted prices.

Mr Choo is married to another real estate agent, and they have a daughter, nine, and a son, 13.

Mr Choo said his family had previously owned a condominium penthouse in Geylang, which he sold for $1.4 million.

To pay for his new place, Mr Choo has taken out a 24-year loan of $560,000, saying: "You can always earn more money.

"But it's not easy to find a suitable flat which you can call home."

"I searched for a month and looked at six units before I decided on this one."

The block is about 600m away from St Hilda's Secondary which Mr Choo's son attends.

His daughter, Schermaine, attends the nearby St Hilda's Primary School.

She said: "I can walk to school in 10 minutes. There's also a park, shopping mall and playground nearby for me."

Mr Choo's family was also drawn by the extensive renovation to the unit.

He said the previous owner had spent $200,000 and had fittings such as a water feature in the living room, and glass banisters.

And Mr Choo claimed the owners left behind furniture worth $100,000.Some of the furniture they included a custom-made bed, Japanese-style tabletop and a Swarovski crystal chandelier worth $3,000.

They also left electrical appliances like a flat-screen TV, fridge and speakers.

Said Mr Choo: "They were also a Singaporean family who upgraded to a condominium. They initially wanted a COV of $240,000, but I managed to bargain down."

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