About 88,000 Hong Kong families had applied for 620 subsidised homes, a record of 141 applicants competing for each flat, housing authorities said on Monday as the city’s overall property prices continued to soar. By the 7pm deadline, applications for …

Wow! Almost squirted coffee from my mouth full of the black liquid – my favourite Kopi O! If you thought that waiting for a Build-to-Order flat, think twice! There are young couples complaining about 30 people fighting for a flat, lamenting about having to wait two years to get a flat.

There are some people who will probably have to wait till their toddlers become grandparents before they can get a flat; it is worse than having to strike 4D! As a matter of fact, families in Hong Kong describe successfully getting a flat as an equivalent to striking Mark Six! In Singapore, we call it TOTO so you can imagine how difficult it is to win anything more than $10 from TOTO, right?!

The report that made me choke: 88,000 Hong Kong families had applied for 620 subsidized homes!

This is siao! This is madness! This literally means that there are 141 applicants competing for each flat! And it’s not like the “subsidized flats” (I hate that word when we don’t know if prices were ever subsidized!) in Hong Kong are cheap! They are typically 400-500 square feet and cost more than Singapore’s “subsidized flats” on a per square foot basis!

This is definitely an under-supply situation! Too much demand, too little supply.

Oversupply?

When Kopi O prices start to fall, then we know there is oversupply lor! Right? But wait. Since when do prices come down? Even when MRT tunnels flood, lightning strikes MRT and we hear about train delays, MRT fares will come down meh? Let’s see if the sun can rise from the West…one day, maybe.

On Monday, 20 November, I heard some news that demand for our flats have gone down! Kudos to Minister Khaw Boon Wan for past jobs well done in raising supply! Let’s give him some time to fix MRT issues lah! Make noise also no use, right?

Ok, back to HDB issues. HDB said that there is strong demand for three- and four-room flats in Tampines and Geylang (hmmmm?). But also added that subscription rate for flats continued to fall in November! Continued to fall meaning it is falling and such a trend is likely to continue, no?

Ok, I draw table to better illustrate the situation:

Location (3- & 4-room flats) Units Offered Units Subscribed For
Geylang (Eunos Court) 538 1,848
Tampines (Greencourt) 186 193
Punggol (Northshore Edge) 192 466

Some guy said Geylang is popular because it is closer to town. But Punggol Northshore Edge, which is at the end of Singapore – just opposite Pasir Gudang – also very popular what! And it is damn far away from town.

But seriously, the number of people applying for flats have come down quite a lot – from 3.3 in February to 2.9 in August and then 1.7 followed by 1.5 during the August exercise.

That’s why kudos to Mr. Khaw and Mr. Lawrence Wong! The former housing minister and the current housing minister have worked wonders! That’s why we must give some time to Mr. Khaw to fix the transportation issues and then allow Mr. Wong to takeover should Mr. Khaw decide to move to other ministries.

Seriously again, we can now see lesser people applying for flats hence demand has largely been met. The price of resale HDB also not climbing so it is very hard to envisage a solid recovery in the property sector, especially in the low-end condos.

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