The effect of the global economic slowdown has emerged, and with Britain’s European referendum result, the situation will inevitably worsen. Nevertheless, on the other hand, it reduces the chance for the US Federal Reserve to raise interest rates this year. The Bank of England even expects that in July and August there will be the opportunity to cut interest rates.
Buying property as an investment is traditionally a way to preserve the value of personal assets and a preventive way to resist economic recession. Currently, with the reduction of investment costs, it is the ideal time to seek property with high-growth potential to achieve a win-win situation of both investment and self-occupation.
The value of any property depends on its location and this is no exception in Hong Kong. As we all know, the traditional prestigious areas such as the Peak and Kowloon Tong have excellent locations and prices are very stable, but the entry cost is high and not everyone can afford it.
At present, the primary property market prevails and most of the residential units are situated in the New Territories, where buyers can have a variety of choices.
A residential area with high potential for stable prices and demand has to have an abundant supply, high viewing rates by perspective purchasers, all-established facilities and space for future development. Among all, Tseung Kwan O possesses the above advantages and the most significant potential to grow.
Primary Market at Tseung Kwan O
Wheelock and Company – Savannah
In June, Savannah, a new property project by Wheelock and Company at Tseung Kwan O, achieved a record-high registration rate, as well as the second highest registration record of first-hand private residential units under five million dollars in the first half of the year.
The development is a new addition to the “O’South”, the company’s property portfolio in Tseung Kwan O, together with two other newly launched projects, The Parkside and Capri. The project, which is targeting the primary market, is located at No.3 Chi Shin Street (opposite Yee Ming Estate) and comprises four residential towers and five houses, offering 804 units in total.
Savannah features a shopping arcade and a clubhouse at the ground base. The management fee per square foot is $4. Since mid-May, about 560 units of the property have been sold, and it is expected the project will be completed in the first quarter of 2018.
Sun Hung Kai Properties – Ocean Wings
Developed by Sun Hung Kai Properties and located at No.28 Tong Chun Street by the waterfront, Ocean Wings comprises seven residential towers and three houses, offering 628 units in total. The standard floor plan ranges from one to four-bedroom designs, and each accounts for 20% of the total units.
Early on, a featured unit was sold for a record-breaking price, selling at more than $28,000 per square feet. The management fee is about $4.5 per square feet according to the net area and the pre-sale period is about 21 months.
Secondary Market at Tseung Kwan O
Lohas Park has achieved the highest number of units among all the residential projects in Hong Kong. The development is in 14 phases and phase three has just been put on offer. The Capitol, phase one, is composed of five towers, offering 2096 units, while the second phase – Le Prestige, Le Prime and La Splendeur – is composed of 10 towers, offering 4272 units. The third phase – Hemera – has four towers, offering 1648 units.
Benefiting from the booming leasing market, at the end of June, Lohas Park had only about 90 units left for lease. The amount has been drastically reduced from the 180 units in May. It reflects there is a continuous demand for the leasing of Lohas Park’s units.
The Wings is a comprehensive development project atop of Tseung Kwan O MTR station. Phase 1, 2, 3A, 3B and Ocean Wings have been launched respectively. The Wings includes 15 residential towers and five houses, offering 3100 units in total.
Second to None
Tseung Kwan O has more than 300,000 inhabitants and the district’s residential areas are located either at the southern side or at Lohas Park, where sites have been snapped up by developers at auctions in recent years.
The emergence of new supply has driven the development of the secondary market steadily. In addition, since Tseung Kwan O is a new town, most of the residential buildings are relatively new which further enhances their appreciation potential.
Near Sai Kung, apart from possessing magnificent views of rolling mountains and the sea, Tseung Kwan O has also benefited from government-led environmental protection projects and has gradually turned into a diversified green community, which is a major draw for family buyers.
On the other hand, because of its proximity to the University of Science and Technology, the leasing market continues to grow, supported by demand from local and Mainland students who prefer to rent flats close to campus.
New Transactions (between July 11 and 17)
In terms of trade, a flat B unit on the upper floor at Tower 5 of The Capitol, Lohas Park, Tseung Kwan O, has a new owner who is a first-time buyer living in the district. The net area of the flat is 519 square feet in a two-bedroom design. After negotiation, the deal was closed at $5.5 million and the cost per square foot is about $10,597.
In terms of leasing, a flat L unit on the lower floor at Tower 1 of The Grandiose, with a net area of 494 square feet in a two-bedroom design, has been rented out at $15,500 per month. The flat was bought by its owner in December 2009 for $2.88 million and the rental yield is about 6.5%.
As the population grows, Tseung Kwan O has gradually developed a comprehensive network of schools. Under the primary one admission system, it belongs to the Sai Kung district under the Secondary School Places Allocation System.
There are a number of secondary schools at Tseung Kwan O such as T.W.G.Hs Lui Yun Choy Memorial College, Carmel Divine Grace Foundation Secondary School and Tseung Kwan O Government Secondary School.
As for primary schools, there is Tseung Kwan O Catholic Primary School, SKH Tseung Kwan O Kei Tak Primary School, PLK Wong Wing Shu Primary School and King Lam Catholic Primary School.
There are also famous direct subsidy scheme schools such as Evangel College and Creative Secondary School.
Two lots of land have been approved for the construction of international schools. The one near Lai Ngok Street has been allocated to the French International School and the school is expected to start as early as 2018-2019.