Location and outdoor space often mean the difference between an ordinary property and an amazing property. Even if the internal living area of a flat is small, having extra outdoor spaces gives a sense of freedom, openness and respite from the bustling city.

As one of the most densely populated and highly urbanised cities in the world, Hong Kong’s greatest luxury is space — especially with which to enjoy the great outdoors. Whether it’s a terrace, rooftop, balcony or garden, private outdoor space is among the most coveted amenities in Hong Kong real estate. But outdoor space gives owners more than fun, sun and bragging rights: there are resale values, too.

Terraces and rooftops in sought-after neighbourhoods, compared to similar flats without them, can boost the value of a property by 20 percent or more. For example, a classic apartment in Mid-Levels West with a balcony housed in a colonial low-rise boasts an asking price per square foot 36 percent higher than the same building’s average. A Pokfulam penthouse with it all — balcony, terrace and rooftop — commands a 22 percent premium on its asking price per square foot compared to the average for the rest of the building.

The lack of properties with usable outdoor space means many are prepared to pay that premium for it, whether buying or renting, particularly for the flats with terraces and rooftops. Seasonal factors also play a role in these apartments’ high demand, with demand for al fresco space moving up to the top of the wish list during Hong Kong’s long summer months. The price per square foot of a stunning, terraced duplex apartment in Kennedy Town is 63 percent higher than the average for the same building during the summer.

Beyond buying and renting, sellers also realise the exponentially high value their outdoor square footage has. Visalia Garden in Mid-Levels Central features spacious units that all have balconies, but one award-winning designer apartment in particular was recently renovated to meet the highest standards of luxury al fresco living and ultimately fetch a better selling price.

For those who love barbeques, entertaining friends or relaxing in an urban oasis, outdoor space is an essential part of the Hong Kong lifestyle.

Published on 12th December, 2013