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The odds were stacked against them, at more than 300 to 1. But in a property market as hot as Hong Kong's that wasn't enough to stop some 1,300 home seekers queuing for a chance to get their hands on just four flats in Parc City, Tsuen Wan.
And according to estate agents, about 1,000 of them were after just one small unit.
"It shows the market is really hot. About 80 percent of these people are chasing after one small two-bedroom unit that costs HK$6 million," said Sammy Po, chief executive at Midland Realty's residential department.
"Most of them were just trying their luck. It's like hitting a jackpot in Mark Six," he added, referring to Hong Kong's popular lottery.
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A long line of potential buyers started to form at 9am on Tuesday outside the sales office in Nina Tower, as Chinachem offered the four units for resale after their original buyers walked away. Having paid their deposits, their bids were entered into a raffle to decide who would become a lucky resident of the sought-after address.
The four flats, ranging in size from 427 to 850 square feet had been sold first time around on August 25 but the transactions did not proceed to completion. The original buyers had paid between HK$6 million and HK$14.4 million each, according to the website of the government's Sales of First-hand Residential Properties Authority.
The most sought after was the smallest unit, which was being offered for resale at the original price.
One of the original buyers had backed out of a HK$6.04 million purchase of the 427-sq ft flat on the 15th floor of Tower 8, forfeiting his HK$300,000 deposit.
For buyers opting to pay cash, the selling price was cut to HK$5.89 million.
Chinachem said the draw to decide the new owners was done by early on Tuesday afternoon.
Po believes only a few of the people in the queue were there for the units costing over HK$14 million – the higher end of the scale.
The biggest of the four abandoned transactions was the HK$14.4 million purchase of an apartment on the 45th floor at Tower 5. The buyer forfeited a HK$720,000 down payment, according to estate agents.
The default cases come after Chinachem announced it had sold all 953 units, worth HK$9 billion, at Parc City in just two weekends, making it the most sought after new project since 2013.
That would bode well for Hong Kong's housing market in September, experts said, after it recorded the slowest growth in property prices in 16 months in July. That was taken as a sign that the breakneck pace of gains was finally losing momentum.