Recent activity on the real estate arena indicates the vivacity of en bloc fever in Singapore is not about to simmer. Last weekend began with talk of Nim Gardens planning to sell en bloc.
According to Business Times, owners of Nim Gardens have even formed a collective sales committee (CSC). This freehold property is on 71 Nim Road in District 28, and it is in close proximity to Bishan Park as well as the Institute of Mental Health.
At Dover Crescent, 24yr old Dover Parkview condominium is in the same position. Its owners are determined to sell it collectively and are set to form a CSC soon.
The property is on a 99yr lease. As Tuesday arrived, another set of willing sellers was unveiled – the owners of Fortune Park condominium, a freehold property located next to Kovan MRT.
They appointed Huttons Asia as their marketing agent and set 28th October for their next extraordinary general meeting (EGM). They highlighted their two main agendas as approval of the collective sales agreement and method of apportionment of the property sales proceeds.
According to Hutton Asia’s head of investment sales, Terence Lian, impromptu meetings soon began, with property owners discussing whether to call for a formal EGM with a view to forming a CSC.
Lian cautions that forming sales committees, as many property owners seem to be doing in the hype, does not guarantee a successful sale. He says the asking price has to be right to capture developers’ interest.
It has not been a smooth ride for owners of Nim Gardens. There was particularly disagreement on their CSC’s terms of reference. A resident disclosed that one point of contention was how much power the owners should cede to the committee, as far as making decisions on their behalf was concerned.
Apparently, another EGM will have to be convened to sort out that issue, which means the appointment of lawyers and consultant is still pending.
Another potential hurdle emanates from the law, as explained by another resident. Initially, in 1982, the Nim Gardens site that measures 23,197 sq. m was given approval for the development of condominiums.
However, in 1994, the same area was designated as property for landed housing. The contradictory nature of the kind of buildings a developer can put up on the site has made potential bidders cautious.
The 1982 approval allowed development of high-rise buildings, but the 1994 development restricts the developer to the present property height.
So, a buyer has now no room to increase the gross floor area. Not surprisingly, only one out of the five property consultancy firms the property owners approached was prepared to consider the idea of taking up the job.
Currently, there are 124 units at Nim Gardens – 106 apartments on 1,850 square feet, as well as 18 maisonettes, covering areas between 2,100 and 2,400 square feet each.
The only way a developer would manage to pay a price attractive to the property owners would be if the plan was to build smaller units of the height of the existing buildings. Unfortunately, the development would not correspond to the official plot ratio.