Henderson’s Seacoast Royale project in Tuen Mun a hit as homebuyers snap up all flats in phase two sale

Homebuyers shrugged off economic uncertainty posed by the third wave of coronavirus sweeping Hong Kong, buying all 185 flats on offer at Henderson Land Development’s Seacoast Royale project in Tuen Mun.
Property agents said the sell-out was never in doubt as the developer received as many as 9,500 registrations of intent, which means an average of 51 individuals put down deposits to qualify to bid for each of the flats on offer.
The flats on sale on Sunday fetched an average of around HK$14,000 (US$1,806) per square foot, slightly higher than the HK$13,638 per sq ft during the first batch on August 1 when the same number of units were on offer.
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“There is a broader worry that the buying power of cash would depreciate now that the global financial system is flush with liquidity and interest rates are expected to continue to stay low,” said Sammy Po, chief executive of residential division at Midland Realty.
“New property launches are still in demand compared to used homes,” he added.
The sale of the entire batch of 185 units was wrapped up just after 5pm, 2.5 hours earlier than the time it took for the same number of flats in the first batch launched on August 1, Henderson’s sales general manager Thomas Lam said in a statement.
The sale fetched HK$838 million, according to the statement
“Given the enthusiastic responses received thus far, we remain confident about the sales performance for the subsequent batches of the project,” said Lam.
A spokeswoman for Henderson however said that timetable for the third batch has not yet been finalised.
Prices at the 611-unit, twin-tower Seacoast Royale, developed by Hong Kong Ferry (Holdings), a unit of Henderson Land, and Empire Group Holdings, start at HK$2.91 million for a studio unit measuring 207 sq ft, the cheapest price for a new project in 18 months in the city.
A unit measuring 547 square feet has fetched HK$7.29 million – the most expensive flat in the project sold so far. With Sunday’s sale, Henderson has sold about 61 per cent of the units in the project.
Despite the pandemic, interest in the city’s new residential launch has remained robust, as record low interest rates, combined with an unprecedented amount of liquidity unleashed by global central banks to alleviate the pandemic’s economic and financial impact have spurred investors to park their money in real estate assets.
The US Federal Reserve has said this year it would maintain its rates ultra low at least until 2022 to support the economy. Hong Kong’s monetary policy moves in lock-step with that of the US due to the Hong Kong dollar’s peg to the US dollar.
The swift sales on Sunday have also been helped by developers who have launched their flats at discounts and easy financing plans that require buyers to put down as little as 10 per cent of a flat’s catalogue price.
Hong Kong’s economy in the second quarter contracted 9 per cent year on year, just before the city was hit by the third wave of the coronavirus. On Sunday, more than 70 new cases were reported, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to over 4,000.
According to data from the Land Registry, sales and purchase agreements for residential units slowly recovered to 6,987 units in June, after staying below 4,110 for each of the first four months this year when Hong Kong was battling the initial two waves of the Covid-19 pandemic. But transactions in July declined to 6,133.
Some analysts expect sales of second-hand homes to be affected by the pandemic, as owners of lived-in homes have had to slash prices because developers are launching new projects at attractive rebates and discounts to lure buyers.
Around 4,000 new apartments are in the pipeline for launch over the next four months of the year, on top of the current inventory of 13,000 unsold abodes around the city, according to published data.
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