August 28, 2006

Bitten by the property bug

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It finally happened...after years of refusing to put any money in properties and being extremely risk-averse, I've finally started looking at buying a place of my own.

I was looking around for a place in HK, an older place which I can renovate into a nice place to live in, done just the way I like it. Unfortunately we are rather high up on the property cycle, and thanks to the Fed we now have rather high interest rates. Monthly mortgage payments look a bit frightening, so maybe this is not to time to get that dream apartment done.

Lots of people have been going to Shanghai, and it still looks like a market with significant upside. But recent government measures bring uncertainty to the market, so we'll need to revisit next year.

That leaves Singapore. Lots of friends, colleagues and hedge funds have jumped into this market recently, pushing up prices on new developments. I should have got into this market 2 years ago as I was living there, but the general view is that market cycle is unlikely to dip until after 2009-10. So maybe there's still some opportunity here for leveraged exposure... Anyway, going down next week to check things out and we'll see what happens.

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