Bedok project draws long queue, but… | bedok residences

Straits Times: Tue, Nov 22
HUNDREDS of people braved the rain and scorching heat yesterday to queue for the upcoming Bedok Residences project, but many claimed they were either acting for agents or being paid to stand in line by genuine buyers.   The line started forming on…

HUNDREDS of people braved the rain and scorching heat yesterday to queue for the upcoming Bedok Residences project, but many claimed they were either acting for agents or being paid to stand in line by genuine buyers.

The line started forming on Sunday night and numbered a few hundred by 7pm yesterday. The CapitaLand project will be launched tomorrow.

Plastic bags and rubbish were strewn across the entrance of the showroom as the crowd settled in for the long wait at the show-flat near Bedok MRT station.

A CapitaLand spokesman said each person in the line is assigned a number that entitles him to pick a unit.

It was not clear why the potential buyers, having obtained a queue number, had to remain behind instead of being allowed to return on the day of the launch.

Some market watchers reckoned this to be a marketing ploy, as the sight of a big turnout might help drum up interest among buyers at a time of flagging interest in the residential market due to the global uncertainty.

While the project is centrally sited near the Bedok bus interchange, the pricing is unlikely to be a top draw.

Although no firm details have been released, prices are expected to hover around $1,300 per sq ft (psf), valuing a 517 sq ft one-bedroom unit at $723,000.

In contrast, several new projects – including A Treasure Trove in Punggol – have sold well in recent months, with analysts pointing to their average price of about $870 psf as a key attraction.

Bedok Residences comprises 583 units of one-, study plus one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom units, and penthouses.

The 15-storey project will be built above a retail development and is due for completion in 2015. It is unclear how many in the queue are really buyers looking to secure a flat in the 99-year leasehold project.

Since the last cooling measures were implemented in January, no major project has been an instant sell-out.

And Bedok Residences is unlikely to buck the trend, analysts noted.

Many people in the queue The Straits Times spoke to were property agents, or students and retirees who said they were being paid by agents to stay in line.

Asked if they were there to buy, a group of women shook their heads and pointed to a property agent’s name card.

A potential buyer, Mr Lim K.T., said he was interested in the place as his in-laws lived nearby, but added that some of his friends who had come with him had decided against buying when they saw how disorganised the situation was.

There was no clear instruction on where to queue and many people pushed in.

Some analysts were taken aback at the turnout, given the unstable economic outlook. Guessing at a reason for the crowd, Mr Colin Tan, head of research at Chesterton Suntec International, said the resale market has been slow, so agents may be focusing on developer sales.
Source: The Straits Times © Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

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