New rules for developers

Property developers are now required to declare that showflats accurately represent the units offered for sale, assuring potential buyers that what they see is what they will actually get, reported Channel NewsAsia.

To ensure that their show units comply with the new rules, the developers of The Criterion executive condominium (EC) have provided labels indicating the thickness and position of removed walls, a list of fittings, finishes and materials, while setting aside a space for an aircon ledge.

Under the new rules, show units built after 20 July should accurately represent the actual units offered for sale. In fact, the Controller of Housing will conduct spot checks to ensure developers comply with the changes, said the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA).

Those found to be flouting the rules will have their licences revoked or suspended. They can also be fined up to $5,000 or jailed up to six months or both, URA said.

Meanwhile, property agents are also making it a point to inform buyers of the changes.

“The agents take a proactive approach to tell the consumers where there are marking signs to say this is the layout of the balcony, or for that matter, some of these things are to be visualised in terms of the height, the finishings, and they do that. And we have done that as part of the training prior to opening the showflat to the consumers,” said PropNex Realty CEO Mohamed Ismail.

Some prospective buyers have welcomed the new rules, saying that they are a good change.

“Definitely with all these labels, I feel safer knowing that what I see in the showflat will be accurately reflected in my home,” said Joe Sim.

“I have been to other show galleries in the past and there is always this wrong impression given. With these indicators, I think it is a good thing. Now I know the actual size of the unit I am buying, how it really feels like and the unit’s overall concept,” added Daniel Yeo.

The Criterion and Signature at Yishun ECs, which are launching around the same time, are among the first projects to be affected by the latest URA rules.

Signature at Yishun sold 100 units at an average price of $750 psf after it opened for bookings on 26 September, while The Criterion EC will commence sales on 10 October.

Romesh Navaratnarajah, Singapore Editor at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact him about this or other stories email romesh@propertyguru.com.sg

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