Flats at the biggest development to come to market since rules on their sale were toughened this year sold briskly yesterday.
Aided by an aggressive pricing strategy, New World Development sold 82 per cent of the 238 flats that were on offer at Park Signature in Yuen Long yesterday.
The flats put on sale were a fraction of the 1,620 in the development. Adrian Cheng Chi-kong, New World's executive director and joint general manager, said a second batch of flats would be offered for sale last night. The company did not say how many flats the batch would comprise.
The first batch put on sale ranged from studios to four-bedroom flats, with an average price of HK$8,336 per square foot of saleable area.
Franky Li, a senior marketing executive in his late 20s, said he bought a 302 sq ft flat at Park Signature for about HK$2.7 million.
"I am attracted by the small lump-sum cost. That is my main reason for buying," Li said.
The minimum HK$2.5 million price for a flat at Park Signature is lower than that at two other new residential projects in Yuen Long, Henderson Land Development's The Reach and New World's The Woodsville.
New World said most of the buyers yesterday purchased the flats for their own use. Four buyers needed to pay a 15 per cent additional stamp duty, called buyer's stamp duty, which is levied on property purchases by non-permanent-resident and corporate buyers.
More than half the buyers were from the northwest New Territories. Three were from the mainland.
Thomas Lam, the head of research at property consultant Knight Frank, said Park Signature attracted many first-time buyers.
"The sales are not bad, mainly because the lump-sum price is low," Lam said. "I believe new large-scale projects with a similarly [aggressive pricing] position would raise competition between developers."
Developers are set to put more than 6,000 new flats on sale in Yuen Long and Tseung Kwan O in the next two years.
Property transactions slowed down after the government implemented measures to curb soaring prices of flats. The Residential Properties (First-hand Sales) Ordinance, which took effect in April, requires developers to observe greater transparency in their sales procedures.
Louis Chan Wing-kit, the managing director for residential sales at Centaline Property Agency, said developers might have to offer more discounts to draw buyers. "Developers will have to undercut secondary-market prices to speed up sales," he said.
Meanwhile, lawmaker Abraham Razack said he would table amendments to the buyer's stamp duty when the Legislative Council resumes sitting.
Additional reporting by Yvonne Liu and Tanna Chong