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Thread: Condo ads - caveat emptor

  1. #1
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    http://www.straitstimes.com/Singapor...ry_415968.html

    August 13, 2009 Thursday

    No more 'future MRT stations' in condo ads


    TWO developers which included unconfirmed locations of future MRT stations in their condo advertisements have stopped using the information as a selling point.

    UOL Developments has altered publicity material for its [email protected], removing a location map that showed several MRT stations on the planned Thomson Line, which will be ready only in 2018.

    Far East Organization has removed the supposed site of a future station in Marine Parade from a webpage on the Silversea condo.

    The moves came after The Straits Times ran an article over the weekend on developers using unconfirmed MRT information in their sales materials.

    Ms Claire Cher, spokesman for UOL Group, parent of UOL Developments, said the company realised that station sites in its [email protected] advertisements 'have not been confirmed'.

    'We have therefore taken steps on the very day the article appeared to remove the map from all our publicity materials.

    'It was never our intention to mislead buyers,' she said.

    Ms Cher also said the company is writing to buyers to inform them of the possibly inaccurate information, but stopped short of offering them outright the option to withdraw from their purchase.

    One buyer, Mr Sean Chia, 37, said 'it is good' that UOL has corrected the ads. But he said he did not buy a unit there because of the proposed stations, which he pointed out were 'not near' the development.

    'We bought because of the location - it is close to a reservoir and there is a lot of greenery around. It is also a huge plot,' he said.

    Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore chairman Eleanor Wong said developers should avoid misleading advertisements.

    'Certainly, an advertiser should never make it seem like a 'planned' station has already been built; or oversell the certainty of the station being built if things are still open to confirmation.'

    She added that builders should also 'be careful not to give the impression that an MRT station is nearby if it is not'.

    Far East Organization spokesman Oh Thay Lee gave the assurance that the company will now use only confirmed information on MRT lines and stations in its property advertisements.

    She admitted that Far East ran an advertisement on July 11 on the Silversea that had a map which indicated the location of a possible MRT station in Marine Parade.

    'Since then, we have not used this map in our print advertisements,' she said.

    Subsequent Silversea ads, however, still had the line 'near to the future Marine Parade MRT Station'. Far East said this too will be removed.

    CHRISTOPHER TAN

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr funny
    http://www.straitstimes.com/Singapor...ry_415968.html

    August 13, 2009 Thursday

    No more 'future MRT stations' in condo ads


    TWO developers which included unconfirmed locations of future MRT stations in their condo advertisements have stopped using the information as a selling point.

    UOL Developments has altered publicity material for its [email protected], removing a location map that showed several MRT stations on the planned Thomson Line, which will be ready only in 2018.

    Far East Organization has removed the supposed site of a future station in Marine Parade from a webpage on the Silversea condo.

    The moves came after The Straits Times ran an article over the weekend on developers using unconfirmed MRT information in their sales materials.

    Ms Claire Cher, spokesman for UOL Group, parent of UOL Developments, said the company realised that station sites in its [email protected] advertisements 'have not been confirmed'.

    'We have therefore taken steps on the very day the article appeared to remove the map from all our publicity materials.

    'It was never our intention to mislead buyers,' she said.

    Ms Cher also said the company is writing to buyers to inform them of the possibly inaccurate information, but stopped short of offering them outright the option to withdraw from their purchase.

    One buyer, Mr Sean Chia, 37, said 'it is good' that UOL has corrected the ads. But he said he did not buy a unit there because of the proposed stations, which he pointed out were 'not near' the development.

    'We bought because of the location - it is close to a reservoir and there is a lot of greenery around. It is also a huge plot,' he said.

    Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore chairman Eleanor Wong said developers should avoid misleading advertisements.

    'Certainly, an advertiser should never make it seem like a 'planned' station has already been built; or oversell the certainty of the station being built if things are still open to confirmation.'

    She added that builders should also 'be careful not to give the impression that an MRT station is nearby if it is not'.

    Far East Organization spokesman Oh Thay Lee gave the assurance that the company will now use only confirmed information on MRT lines and stations in its property advertisements.

    She admitted that Far East ran an advertisement on July 11 on the Silversea that had a map which indicated the location of a possible MRT station in Marine Parade.

    'Since then, we have not used this map in our print advertisements,' she said.

    Subsequent Silversea ads, however, still had the line 'near to the future Marine Parade MRT Station'. Far East said this too will be removed.

    CHRISTOPHER TAN

    they should also start to be REAL .. stop showing pictures where the neighbouring buildings went missing ..making it look as if it was the only building there ..

    so misleading .. esp to oversea builders ..

    CHEATERS ..

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    yeah, and pictures of what is in the "neighbourhood".
    I can remember seeing pictures of developer launch a few years ago that look like it's taken from my living room window down over orchard rd.

    place is near redhill MRT.

    maybe if you install a really high power telescope..........

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    not to mention these funny maps, which give you the impression everything is one street away.
    Notice how showflats and prospectus use high quality fitings in the bathrooms and kitchens. Why do finished condo´s never look that way.

    I wished builders would just sell the condo´s naked (or make it an option), most of the time the bathrooms and kitchens are junk. There is something fundamentally wrong with buying a new condo, only to rip out the kitchen and bathroom to renovate it. Since when did having to "renovate" a condo after purchase become the norm?

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    Quote Originally Posted by EBD
    yeah, and pictures of what is in the "neighbourhood".
    I can remember seeing pictures of developer launch a few years ago that look like it's taken from my living room window down over orchard rd.

    place is near redhill MRT.

    maybe if you install a really high power telescope..........
    Sounds similar to this Ang Mo Kio condo called Centro.

    Look at its ad below.

    Can even see Shenton Way!

    And the angle of view is also very strange. You should only be able to see UOB Plaza to the right of OUB Plaza if you are looking from the East side.

    The vantage point appears to be from Suntec City.


  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlrx
    Sounds similar to this Ang Mo Kio condo called Centro.

    Look at its ad below.

    Can even see Shenton Way!

    And the angle of view is also very strange. You should only be able to see UOB Plaza to the right of OUB Plaza if you are looking from the East side.

    The vantage point appears to be from Suntec City.

    So if I buy a unit there I get the girl playing the violin for free?

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    http://www.straitstimes.com/Review/E...ry_416862.html

    Editorial

    August 15, 2009 Saturday

    Condo ads - caveat emptor


    PROPERTY developers, by virtue of their particular trade, have a habit of getting creative in marketing campaigns. In recent, fairly typical instances, two property companies advertised projects as being near unconfirmed locations of future MRT stations. The real estate business knows private property by train stations is highly valued, even if buyers are car owners. Being flexible with the truth in advertising has no place in an industry that meets a prime social goal besides being a plank of the economy.

    Following a report carried in this newspaper, the two firms stopped using misleading transport information as a selling point. This is all to the good, particularly after a Land Transport Authority (LTA) spokesman dismissed the advertised claims as 'wild guesses'. Putting out unconfirmed MRT site information is not the only ploy resorted to. It has become a common - and even acceptable - industry practice for advertised properties to be depicted as being ensconced in verdant greenery when in reality, the 'greenery' is man-made infrastructure such as busy thoroughfares and tall buildings. Schematic diagrams frequently show schools, shopping malls, eating places and other amenities to be closer than they are. 'Walking distance' and 'minutes away' are relative, so advertisers get away with it.

    It is easy to explain why home buyers can be taken in by hype and misrepresentation. In the first half of the year, more than 7,000 privates home were sold, exceeding the 4,264 units sold last year. Lower interest rates, improving consumer sentiment and the fear of being priced out are feeding the froth.

    The onus is on buyers to do their homework. This should exceed what is promised in ads, scale models and dressed-up showflats. In the case of proposed MRT locations, buyers should check or verify the information on LTA's website and published media sources. Better still, do a reconnaissance of the property itself.

    The buyer naivete shown underscores an oddity of the national psyche. Singaporeans have implicit trust in the integrity of the authorities (and rightly so). By extension, they tend to be fairly trusting of big commercial entities - banks, airlines, developers being examples. They accept sales information at face value. Property buyers who do not make thorough checks get what they deserve. The worst kind of information one is bombarded with is not brazen untruths, but untruths cloaked in a modicum of truth. If developers pull this stunt, the operative phrase for buyers is caveat emptor.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geylang OKT
    So if I buy a unit there I get the girl playing the violin for free?
    No. You are supposed to be the girl/ guy playing the violin.

    That's the implication of the advertisement - a high-class cultured environment.

    I wonder how many people actually play the violin in a condo.

    The neighbours may complain to NEA.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by mr funny
    http://www.straitstimes.com/Singapor...ry_415968.html

    August 13, 2009 Thursday

    No more 'future MRT stations' in condo ads


    TWO developers which included unconfirmed locations of future MRT stations in their condo advertisements have stopped using the information as a selling point.

    UOL Developments has altered publicity material for its [email protected], removing a location map that showed several MRT stations on the planned Thomson Line, which will be ready only in 2018.

    Far East Organization has removed the supposed site of a future station in Marine Parade from a webpage on the Silversea condo.

    The moves came after The Straits Times ran an article over the weekend on developers using unconfirmed MRT information in their sales materials.

    Ms Claire Cher, spokesman for UOL Group, parent of UOL Developments, said the company realised that station sites in its [email protected] advertisements 'have not been confirmed'.

    'We have therefore taken steps on the very day the article appeared to remove the map from all our publicity materials.

    'It was never our intention to mislead buyers,' she said.

    Ms Cher also said the company is writing to buyers to inform them of the possibly inaccurate information, but stopped short of offering them outright the option to withdraw from their purchase.

    One buyer, Mr Sean Chia, 37, said 'it is good' that UOL has corrected the ads. But he said he did not buy a unit there because of the proposed stations, which he pointed out were 'not near' the development.

    'We bought because of the location - it is close to a reservoir and there is a lot of greenery around. It is also a huge plot,' he said.

    Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore chairman Eleanor Wong said developers should avoid misleading advertisements.

    'Certainly, an advertiser should never make it seem like a 'planned' station has already been built; or oversell the certainty of the station being built if things are still open to confirmation.'

    She added that builders should also 'be careful not to give the impression that an MRT station is nearby if it is not'.

    Far East Organization spokesman Oh Thay Lee gave the assurance that the company will now use only confirmed information on MRT lines and stations in its property advertisements.

    She admitted that Far East ran an advertisement on July 11 on the Silversea that had a map which indicated the location of a possible MRT station in Marine Parade.

    'Since then, we have not used this map in our print advertisements,' she said.

    Subsequent Silversea ads, however, still had the line 'near to the future Marine Parade MRT Station'. Far East said this too will be removed.

    CHRISTOPHER TAN
    Don't totally blame the developer, actual MRT sites especially DTL 3 are surely known by now and the head honchos of FEO, being one of the largest developers have high friends in high places and have access to information not known to public. If DTL 3 is scheduled for completion by 2016 as stated in the LTA website, do you think that planners at LTA still not sure about where the stations are? DTL 3 is long and complex and underground, soil analysis and tender documents would have long been issued, station locations would have also long been known. Also if you have actually been checking LTA website in the past on DTL 3, they actually have vague information of where the stations would run, ie Bedok Reservoir, Marine Parade etc, now that information has been removed, this is very fishy, looks like someone at a very high level at LTA had leaked info to FEO and now trying to cover tracks.

    I believe the Govt wants to keep this information top secret as they want to manipulate land prices and keep information so as to maximise profits by acquiring land for cheap and later selling at high prices.......all smack of greedy and corrupt practices present in third world countries, where people are ignorant.

    So open your eyes wide shut, there is more than one deceitful party when coming to buying properties.
    Last edited by xebay11; 16th August 2009 at 07:05 AM.

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