Things are getting interesting when Boon Wan is doing the kpkb himself. Kpkb is going to take on a very special meaning now. He is infuriated with the BT report on the obscene profit that Sim Lian was supposed to make from Centrale 8. ‘I am working my guts out to try to calm the market, for the good of all Singaporeans. But I can’t do it alone. I need all to help.’
And Boon Wan has only been on the job for 5 weeks and found himself having sleepless night trying to solve an enormous problem that was non existence before he took office. His predecessor was having a cake walk then. Everything was going on smoothly according to plans, and Singaporeans got to be thankful for his skilled management of the housing problems. Oops, cannot call it a problem as there was no problem at all.
Perhaps Boon Wan may want to have tea with his predecessor and get a few good advices on how to manage a problem that was not a problem in the first place. Then he can have an easier life. Imagine him rushing out all the BTOs and pushing all the contractors to build in double quick time, cannot sleep, and the prices still uncontrollable. And he needs everyone to help him when all he needed is Mah Bow Tan to show him the ropes.
Or could it be that all the so called problems were imaginary. Look at the riotings in Hongkong. They have a real problem, and one of which is soaring property prices. The people are really getting hit and are walking the streets. Here, where got problem? I can’t see any problem. You can’t find more than 200 angry people at Hong Lim and you called it a problem?
And Centrale 8 is still very well received by the people. Many young people are finding the location and facilities excellent and willing to pay the asking price. You cannot call that a problem. The people are just too happy to pay. Stop imagining? The answer is very simple. Just tell yourself that there is no problem and the problem will disappear. If people come to kpkb about problems, tell them it is they themselves that are the problems. Other people, in fact at least 60% of the population, are very happy people. Or adopt the deaf frog approach, just believe that what you are doing is right and the best way to go. Your conscience will then be clear and you will be at peace with yourself, and the million dollar salary.
Now, how can the media help Boon Wan? To report that there were profiteering and that the prices were too high? Or to report that the prices are reasonable with very little profit? I think, just the personal opinion of a simple layman, if the buyers are told that developer’s costs are so high and the pricing is just right with minimum profit, then they can never expect the price to come any lower. You cannot expect the developer to build at a lost. So I think the buyers will buy up the whole Centrale 8 at the asking price. If the price is excessively high as reported, would it not put fear to the buyers and to pressure other developers to bring the price down?
On the one hand it was worrying that the price was too high. Now it is claimed that it is reasonable, with little profit? Which view will create more problems?
Maybe the media shall not report on those rich interviewees who said the prices are affordable or reasonable. And then report on those who are complaining that the prices are too high, cannot afford them? There is a choice in reporting, really. The Hongkong demonstration was reported to have 200,000 participants by the organisers and only 50,000 by the police. And the readers also have a choice to read what they want to believe in the media.
So, is the price of Centrale 8 high or low? Is there a housing problem here? Now who is to say that a $1m Ferrari is expensive? It all depends on whether you can afford it. To some it is cheap, cheap, cheap.
By the way, what is the hooha about? The market forces will set the property prices. Those who can afford, buy, those who cannot, downgrade their expectations. Problem solved already.