Tuen Mun and Ma On Shan are set to become the latest battlefields for developers when two housing projects together offering more than 2,000 new flats are released for sale.
Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP), Hong Kong's biggest developer by value, fired the first salvo in the fight for buyers by releasing 107 flats at Century Gateway in Tuen Mun for pre-sale for about HK$11,000 per sq ft yesterday, beating Henderson Land to the draw.
As of 7pm, Henderson Land Development said it would offer 314 flats in its joint venture Double Cove project in Wu Kai Sha, with prices averaging HK$8,800 per sq ft and pre-sales this Friday.
The project is a joint venture with New World Development and the Peterson Group.
The pricings show that developers have not been influenced by recent measures aimed at making homes more affordable.
SHKP's selling price includes a car parking space which it says is worth HK$1.1 million, and the developer says it will deduct the amount if a buyer decides not to take the space. An additional sweetener on offer to buyers at Century Gateway is a rebate equivalent to 3 per cent of a flat's value if the transaction is completed within 120 days.
SHKP Club membership will also entitle buyers to an additional 3 per cent price discount.
Henderson Land and its co-developers at Double Cove have responded with an offer of a 5 per cent discount on list prices to buyers who pay cash.
"Competition for buyers is heating up as more than 90 per cent of new supply will focus on the New Territories," Argus Mak, sales director at Centaline Property Agency's Sha Tin branch, said. Mak believed Century Gateway was likely to appeal to investors, while end-users would be drawn to the lifestyle offered by Double Cove.
Located at West Rail's Tuen Mun station, Century Gateway will be about a 40-minute drive to Macau and Zhuhai when the bridge is completed in 2016. Its proximity to Harrow International School would add value, Mak said.
In addition, Century Gateway is near the 300,000 sq ft shopping centre V City, which will attract mainland shoppers and residents in the area. "These features will help to drive future rental growth," said Mak. The project is due for completion in the third quarter of next year.
Mindful of the attractions of its location, SHKP has priced its Century Gateway flats as the most expensive residential project in Tuen Mun, or at a level comparable to that of Taikoo Shing in Quarry Bay.
Flats in the 1,075-unit project, sized from 982 to 1,110 sq ft, are being offered for sale at between HK$9.51 million, or $9,686 per sq ft, and HK$14 million, or $12,702 per sq ft. The most expensive apartment is 1,855 sq ft, including roof top and private swimming pool, which is priced at HK$33.94 million, or HK$18,300 per sq ft.
Bernie Chan, Midland Realty district sales director in Tuen Mun, said Century Gateway was the first new development on the market in the area since 2005, and it was therefore difficult to compare prices with nearby developments which were built a decade ago. The highest price fetched in recent secondary market deals at the 13-year-old Chelsea Heights, also built by SHKP, was about HK$6,100 per sq ft; while prices of around HK$5,500 per sq ft were paid for flats in Tuen Mun's town centre, he said.
Home seekers who preferred to live in a purely residential area might prefer to buy at Double Cove, said Mak, where prices were also lower than at Century Gateway.
Located within walking distance of Wu Kai Sha station, Double Cove is a waterfront development overlooking Starfish Bay. Phase one of the development consists of 928 flats, sized from 637 sq ft to 1,295 sq ft. Prices start from around HK$4.92 million, or HK$7,700 per sq ft for a 639 sq ft flat; and rise to around HK$10 million, or HK$10,000 per sq ft, for a 1,037 sq ft flat.
The project is due for completion in the fourth quarter of next year.