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Property News Weekly Digest
〈Asian Post, July 18, 2020〉Aggressive' stance by developer in first phase of Regency Bay sales amid third wave of infections

Sun Hung Kai Properties has priced its latest project in Tuen Mun nearly 40 per cent higher than other recent launches in the area, paying no heed to the third wave of coronavirus outbreak sweeping the city.

It has priced the first batch of 88 flats at its Regency Bay residential development at HK$17,377 per square foot after discount, the highest among new projects launched in the district recently.

Prices start at HK$4.68 million after discounts for a flat measuring 261 sq ft. SHKP has yet to announce a launch date for sales.

"The developer is testing waters [as] it is the first new project priced amid the third wave of coronavirus outbreak," said Louis Chan, vice-chairman of Asia-Pacific and chief executive of residential division at Centaline Property Agency. "The pricing of the first batch is aggressive."

The selling price is 38.5 per cent higher than the HK$12,548 per square foot for Oma by the Sea launched by Wing Tai Properties in May. It is 14.6 per cent up on the HK$15,166 per square foot for its own Mount Regency phase two launched in June last year.

〈Asian Post, July 17, 2020〉Goldin Financial Holdings, which staged a spectacular U-turn in 2018 from buying Hong Kong's most expensive waterfront land, said it is actively looking for capital to repay debt, as its stock has lost nearly 70 per cent in value since October.

The developer, controlled by billionaire Pan Sutong, said it had been "in active discussions" with creditors since March to repay its loans and had come up with two solutions, according to its filing to the Hong Kong stock exchange.

The company, once one of the most aggressive asset buyers in Hong Kong, said it would raise a new loan of HK$8.7 billion, without elaborating.

It sold a waterfront residential plot at the former airport called Kai Tak Area 4B Site 4 for HK$7.04 billion in May, incurring a net loss of HK$2.57 billion after fees and financing costs.

"The proceeds from the disposal would be primarily used to reduce the group's borrowings, thereby enhancing its financial flexibility as a whole," Goldin said in a filing.

〈The Standard, July 16, 2020〉Exodus prompts urgent home sales

As the national security law prompts concern among Hongkongers, immigration has become a hot topic and the market has seen an increase in properties listed as an immigration-related urgent sale.

Looking through multiple real estate websites, several properties sold over the past month were listed as an immigration-related urgent sale, reflecting owners' eagerness to leave.

There were also at least 10 immigration-related cases in the secondary market last month. A Tai Po agent said many immigrating owners have slashed their asking prices by 5 to 10 percent after negotiations with buyers.

However, president of Many Wells Property Agent Lawrance Wong Dun-king pointed out that in Tuen Mun and Tin Shui Wai, listings related to immigration recently saw a significant drop compared to the beginning of the month.

"After news of the national security law came out, several people claimed they wish to immigrate, but not many actually put their plans into practice," he said.

〈The Standard, July 15, 2020〉A foreclosed house on The Peak was sold for HK$171 million after being on the market for three years, with the price per square foot at HK$71,600. The offered price decreased 43 percent compared with seven years ago.

Meanwhile, the Centaline Index showed that rents for private homes stood at HK$33.90 per sq ft in June, the first rise after falling for 10 months, while land premiums in the second quarter amounted to HK$570 million.

L'aquatique in Tsing Lung Tau, built by mainland developer Metallurgical Corporation of China (1618), has recorded forfeited deposits from potential buyers of 23 units, accounting for 29 percent of its 80 transactions.

The occupation permit of L'aquatique has not been approved for a year due to slope work.

〈Shanghai Daily, July 14, 2020〉THE southern Chinese metropolis of Shenzhen yesterday rolled out a slew of measures, including purchase restrictions and higher down payments, in an attempt to cool down its housing market.

People need to hold the city’s hukou, or local household registration status, for at least three years and have 36 consecutive months of individual income tax or social security payment records before being eligible for home buying in the city, according to a circular released by the municipal housing and construction bureau and seven other government agencies.

In recent years, people were eligible for home buying immediately after they got the city’s hukou, to some extent exacerbating the imbalance between market supply and demand, said an official with the local government.

Any party of a divorced couple is not allowed to further buy houses in Shenzhen within three years of their divorce if they had two or more houses before their divorce, said the circular.

The city authorities ordered higher taxes as well as higher down payments of up to 80 percent in a bid to tame speculative buying.