The Wongs are looking at a condo development not far from where we are currently staying. Walking through the developer's mock-up apartments, it's hard the not be tempted by the clean, shiny surfaces and slick ideas for making small spaces look larger than they are. The sales talk and concept drawings are likewise persuasive, promising a resort-like environment where life away from work can be a permanent vacation. Big sigh.
Particularly droolsome is one of the penthouse units with an open skylight for staring out into space at night to observe the heavenly bodies in their nocturnal progressions. For the asking price, all fixtures and fittings are thrown in, except lighting -- almost move-in condition already upon completion of infrastructure construction.
The plan: two Wong households occupy a single penthouse which includes a downstairs studio apartment. Our existing HDB apartments are to be rented out, the proceeds of which will finance the loan for the condo unit.
The Wongs have lots to think about and discuss before the night is over. Our sales rep can't hold the unit too long and has given us 24 hours to commit...
This is not a decision to rush into, though. Other people doing the math for us is likely to overlook or understate important variables that may cause us to regret any over-enthusiastic autograph signing at this time. Fortunately, the Wongs are also willing to err on the side of caution and seek more objective advice on the current and near-future property situation.
My bottom-line is this: I haven't yet finished paying for one, and I'm not keen to start paying for another. For me, living off rental income is counting eggs before they're hatched. It's a caution that's holding me back from being rich, but then I don't like the potential money pit I'm looking at right now.