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3 Big Gimmicks Of New Condominium Showflats
Nobody has a real need to buy a new condominium. It is more of a want than a need. Not that there is anything wrong with it. We make money and we choose how to spend it. But buying a new launch condominium is not just an indulgence. It’s also a personal milestone. A declaration that you have arrived.
The problem these days is that developers are using sales strategies that most people would probably expect from a supermarket. You would think that a product selling for thousands to millions of dollars would use more sophisticated ways to market their products.
That is not the case. So here are the 3 biggest marketing gimmicks you should watch out for when visiting showflats of new condominiums.
There is a reason why clubs use neon lights to put clubbers in to a daze, and a reason why cafes with overpriced ice-blended coffees don’t use normal white florescence lights. They create an ambience that is unlike what everyone is used to. This puts visitors into a different state and tricks the logical mind.
Have you asked yourself why someone would be more than willing to spend $30 on a simple dish in a hotel when it taste no better than a similar dish in the coffee shop? Well, you could argue that they are pampered. But a lot of people with sound minds are willing to pay up for the ambience.
So interior designers and contractors who build condominium showrooms apply this concept into their constructions.
At a showflat, you would find smooth contemporary music playing in the background to soothe your mind, natural light beaming into the living room through the balcony even when the unit you want don’t have a balcony, warm lights installed as down lights to create a nice ambience, etc.
You probably will have your own plans on how you want to renovate your house after you takeover it. But it doesn’t hurt anyone to see your unit in a homely state when you have little to no intention to spend all that money to replicate the designs.
You then get free drinks served to you like a ballroom event while the soft smell of cookies make you feel at home. The obvious flaws of the apartment become negligible and you feel a little high as if you just had a spoonful of cough syrup. This is when you start making decisions thinking you already own the place.
Be aware of your mental state before handing over that cheque.
It is amazing how a clever interior designer can make a shoebox apartment look and feel like the presidential suite. Visual impacts can play games with our perception even when a salesperson tells us outright that a wall or 2 is supposed to be at a specific location. It is like test driving a sports car and the salesman tell you to expect a different lower grade engine.
There is an alarming number of visual tricks designers can play with our minds.
- Missing walls
- Missing doors
- Missing pillars and beams
- Using thinner walls to create space
- Using furniture and fixtures that do not resemble their real sizes
- Exterior space resembling a balcony when there isn’t any balcony
- High ceilings when there is actually none in the actual apartment
- Glass panels used to replace where a wall is supposed to be
- Using the classic full length mirrors to “double” your space
3) Playing with the definition of size
If you are a jolly first time home buyer, it is almost a given that you would fall victim of many weird marketing gimmicks developers find necessary to use. And you really can’t blame yourself should you end up buying a lemon. Because you have little to no experience dealing with buying property.
And the biggest gimmick is the concept of size. In real estate, houses are often priced by a per square foot or per square meter basis. This means that the more square feet a developer can justifiably squeeze into a unit, the higher the price they can legitimately charge buyers.
This is where you find the strangest and most amusing ways to define and increase size.
The first feature that might leave you breathless is that unliveable space like the air-conditioning ledge is counted into the floor area. Home buyers would agree that areas like these have to be paid for. But to lump them up together with the rest of the house is a little far fetch. Especially when some apartment units have usually large ledges. Developers might as well make the ledge as big as 50% of the total area of the house to maximise their profits.
Another weird factor that increases floor area is a high ceiling. This means that if your living room is 400 square feet and has a high ceiling, 400 square feet will be added into your total floor area. The justification is that it is liveable space and should be charged accordingly.
But to include high ceiling as total area is ridiculous. It’s not as if we have wings to live in the space above.
I get it that prices could be set for a whole unit and the floor area is just a variable that helps people play with statistics. But by increasing floor area, prices per square feet could present information that is not a good reflection of how expensive a new condominium really is.
Sometimes, even critical information about how big an apartment actually is is excluded from brochures and marketing material. This is important as floor area is not a good indication of the amount of usable space for a home owner.
Many times people end up with smaller homes thinking they bought something bigger. Then they get a huge shock when they realise that the “missing” space is located outside their homes which were included in floor area.
So remember this. New condominiums are very rigid with showing you prices in square feet. This is why the amount of square feet is often mentioned to you. But it is not the amount of floor area that is important. It is the amount of usable space you end up with that makes the unit worth your hard earned money.
Don’t be an easy target for salespeople at the showflats. You are spending big money for a premium product. You would be fool to leave your questions unanswered.