image

Weekend Property

Young Hong Kong homebuyers go northwest: new Tuen Mun starter flats lure singles and newlyweds

Many newly developed microhomes – targeting first-time buyers – are coming onto the market in this increasingly popular town, a fact which in turn is driving down secondary market prices and volumes

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 January, 2017, 9:51am
UPDATED : Friday, 20 January, 2017, 11:14am

The town centre of Tuen Mun has seen a massive transformation in recent years as new property developments have attracted young families, bachelors and singles buying their first property.

Compared with Kowloon and other parts of New Territories, Tuen Mun town centre is a relatively affordable neighbourhood for renting and buying properties.

Dating back to the early 1980s, Tuen Mun was initially master planned as a satellite city with a high concentration of public housing. But over time, the children of those who settled in Tuen Mun during that earlier period have themselves established families and accumulated certain wealth, thereby driving up demand for starter homes.

More apartment developments, apparently targeting youngsters and newlyweds, have been planned and launched onto the market in the past two years, such as Ori by Nan Fung Development and 2GETHER by HKR International, with a few more coming on stream this year.

Projects expected to go on sale off plan in 2017 include T Plus, Eight Regency, and three more projects located at Yip Wong Road, Yan Ching Street and Tuen Mun Heung Sze Wui Road.

Couture Homes, the residential arm of CSI Properties, says the Yan Ching Street project it is working on would be geared towards luxury homes with tasteful interiors comparable to the Yoo Residence development in Causeway Bay it built.

Scheduled for sale launch in the second quarter of the year, the Yan Ching Street development will comprise 200 units built in a layout mix of approximately 200 sq ft to 400 sq ft, or from studios to two-bedrooms. Most will be configured as one-bedroom. “The definition of luxury homes is no longer confined to family homes in excess of 3,000 square feet or 4,000 square feet. Thoughtfully planned microapartment buildings can also provide compact, flexible space that offers an all-inclusive and hotel-style living experience,” says Jimmy Fong, managing director of sales and marketing at CSI Properties.

Built by Chung Wo Development and Excel Billion Corp, T Plus is a 21-storey microapartment complex providing 356 units with their size ranging from 128 sq ft 387 sq ft, with a few more located on upper floors built at 358 sq ft to 763 sq ft. It is scheduled for completion in September 2018.

The definition of luxury homes is no longer confined to family homes in excess of 3,000 square feet or 4,000 square feet
Jimmy Fong, CSI Properties

Chung Wo says that the project would appeal to new families or newlyweds branching out of the neighbourhood with its on-site clubhouse and shopping facilities, despite the shoebox-sized living space being offered.

Eight Regency was first introduced to the market in June last year, but the developer Sun Hung Kai Properties (SHKP) says it would be officially launched for sale in the second quarter of this year.

Located at 8 Leung Tak Street, Eight Regency is a 25-storey complex comprising 321 homes, ranging from approx 300 sq ft to 870 sq ft in size, including studios, one-, two- and three-bedrooms. It is earmarked for completion around August 2018.

Elsewhere, Chuang’s Consortium is building another 300-unit complex at Yip Wong Road, which is located close to cycling tracks and a green-belt zone. The floor plan mix and exact number of units have not been fixed, but it will likely provide one- and two-bedroom studios. Marketing of the project will commence in the fourth quarter, according to the developer.

New World Development is also set to launch another 100-unit development at 88 Heung Sze Wui Road once it secures presale consent. The project is expected to be completed and delivered in August 2018.

In the secondary market, apartment prices across Tuen Mun fell by about 8 per cent in early January from the preceding month, according to a pricing index compiled by Many Wells Property Agent that tracks 51 housing estates across the district.

Wilson Lam, a senior sales manager at Many Wells Property Agent, explains that competition from new project launches in Tuen Mun had inevitably undercut the secondary market, suppressing prices and volumes. Now appears to be an opportune time for bargain hunting in the secondary market, he says. Last year, secondary market activity mainly concentrated at Century Gateway, a large-scale development consisting of four residential towers atop the Tuen Mun MTR station fully completed in 2014. More than 80 units changed hands at an average price of HK$12,430 per square foot, Land Registry records showed.

In December, SHKP reported it further sold two duplexes from its inventory at Century Gateway for about HK$31.7 million and HK$33.5 million, respectively. The first one came with two car-parking spaces, while the second one was sold with three car-parking spaces. Both measure 1,640 sq ft in size and are complete with walk-out and rooftop terraces.