5 Considerations Before Buying a Mega Development Condo
28 November, 2023 by
5 Considerations Before Buying a Mega Development Condo
Mindlink Groups, Admin


In big condo developments, people often mention the 'lack of privacy,' but there's more beneath the surface. Marketing and agents play it safe, not diving into deeper issues. Yet, 'lack of privacy' is just the beginning.

Picture life in a high-density condo. Booking amenities becomes a challenge, especially on busy days. This is just one of the many real concerns to know before jumping into a high-unit-count condo. Let's dig into these issues for a full picture

What Defines a Mega-Development in Real Estate?

"Mega-development" usually means 1,000 units or more, but even projects with around 900 units face similar challenges. Today, a "big" project often falls in the 700 to 800+ unit range. Size matters, and not always in a good way! 

  1. There is always someone remodeling or relocating.

In a block with hundreds of units, there's a constant renovation buzz and a never-ending flow of tenants moving in or out. Noise becomes a daily companion, reaching you from units higher up. Not ideal if you work from home or have a napping newborn.

Lifts become a battleground too. Contractors and movers might hog one, leaving residents to squeeze into the other. In buildings with just two lifts, sharing with movers, couriers, and everyone else turns into chaos.

For a high-unit condo with too few lifts, snagging a lower-floor unit might save your sanity.

  1. Some real estate brokers might be reluctant to handle your listing

Many agents will handle your listing professionally, but some shy away from mega-developments due to fierce competition. Here's why: property portals charge extra to boost listings. For smaller projects, not much boosting is needed, and your listing shines alone. But in a mega-development with 1,000+ units, and dozens of listings, your visibility dwindles.

This hits harder when renting. Commissions are lower, but efforts and costs remain high. While most agents will take the job, you might wonder if the more skilled ones steer clear due to the added challenges. It's a competitive landscape out there. 

  1. Prepare to sprint for the shuttle bus

Living in a mega-development without a nearby MRT or bus stop? Brace yourself for shuttle bus reliance. But here's the catch – those buses might not be big enough or frequent enough.

In the morning rush, squeezing everyone heading to work into one shuttle round is wishful thinking. Just like a jam-packed train, you might have to wait for round two, or in extreme cases, round three.

Some mega-development owners surrender, opting for a bike ride or an early morning walk to the train station. Commuting adventures in the big city!

  1. Pool-related amenities are equally as important as the actual pool.

Pool questions often focus on size and quantity, but the real deal is often in the details. In mega-developments, the changing rooms and showers can be overlooked. Cue the long lines, residents giving up, and a parade of damp bodies in the lobby.

Imagine stepping into a wet, chlorine-scented lift on a Sunday morning. Not the most ideal way to start the day, is it?

Even poolside, snagging a deckchair and umbrella is like a weekend race. In the pool, there's space, but by the side? Not enough chairs or shade. The struggle is real, even in mid-sized condos, let alone the mega ones.

  1. En-bloc problems are a serious concern

Collective sales in larger developments face more hurdles than just size. It's not just about land size and cost; it's about consensus. Smaller projects can en-bloc swiftly due to easy agreement among a smaller group of like-minded owners.

In big or mega-developments, it's a different story. Diverse demographics mean varied opinions and purposes. Elderly owners might not want to move, cash-strapped owners face financing issues, landlords resist the 20% ABSD for a new property, and some foreigners face a hefty 60% ABSD for a replacement unit.

Mandarin Gardens' repeated failed en-blocs highlight the challenge of pushing through sales in larger developments, even during en-bloc fever. Betting on an en-bloc for such massive properties? Not a sure thing, unless there are significant rule changes down the road.

Not all large-scale or megadevelopments are negative, though.

True, mega-developments come with perks like posh facilities and lower costs, but the privacy trade-off is real. While good management and smart design can help, calling it "less privacy" is a big understatement. Buyers need to think about the impact on their lifestyle if they encounter the worst of the challenges. It's a big decision with more than a few trade-offs. 

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