A tenant who agreed to pay US$110,000 a month for an apartment at Opus Hong Kong has decided to cancel the deal.
A tenant who agreed to pay HK$850,000 (US$110,000) a month for a 6,000-square-foot duplex flat at Opus Hong Kong has decided to cancel the deal amidst tightening government policies.
Swire Properties, the developer of the condominium, said the duplex unit at Opus is now back on the market for lease. However, it said the sale of two other 6,500-square-foot flats at the project had been completed.
According to consulting firm mReferral Mortgage Brokerage Services, Hong Kong banks are now expected to offer additional sweeteners to compete for decreasing number of homebuyers. Data show that mortgage loan growth in the city continues to contract amidst the latest round of cooling measures to curb its red-hot property market.
Said mReferral’s Sharmaine Lau Yuen-yuen: mortgage loans would drop 13% this year to HK$198 billion (US$25.5 billion) as a result of a spate of government policies.
‘It will be the lowest since 2009,’ she said. ‘The number of mortgage loans was likely to drop a further 10% to about 9,000 next month.’
Lau also added that the number of inquiries for mortgage loans had dropped 60% in the first two weeks after the introduction of new stamp duties in late October. The measures include an additional 15% stamp duty on purchases by corporate investors and non-permanent residents.
Facing a tough year ahead, Lau said banks had to come up with more incentives such as cash rebates to drum up loan business.
The Frank Gehry-designed Opus project on Stubbs Road near Hong Kong Island’s Peak made headlines when its eighth-floor, 6,200-square-foot unit was sold for a whopping HK$470 million (US$61 million) in August 2012, making this condominium the priciest apartment in a city considered one of the world’s least affordable.
By Rodel Ambas Jr
18 December 2012
Source: South China Morning Post