A new developer is making waves in Chaeng Watthana
Location is the obvious factor driving the market, and all developers try to get the best they can within their budgets and plans. Equally important is building quality, something many condominium buyers might not look at closely enough.
A developer who has experience can be a plus when a buyer is seeking quality and value for money. Building quality, after all, should translate into durability and lower maintenance expenses in the long term.
One new developer making waves in the fast-changing Chaeng Watthana area of Bangkok is Tri Property, which recently launched its second project, called Proud X2, after selling all the units at its predecessor, Proud of Chaeng Watthana, where construction is well under way.
This company’s young managing director Adisorn Vivakanond crossed the first hurdle – location – easily because his family had a large plot of land in the soi next to Software Park and directly opposite the new CentralPlaza shopping mall in the northern suburb. For the second project it bought additional land in the same soi.
Mr Adisorn’s family also owns Wanchai Construction, which ranked among the top five players in its field in the country prior to the 1997 economic crisis.
While Wanchai Construction still exists, it moved away from jobs such as building apartments, where it was being outpaced by rivals who built at a loss as part of a strategy to strengthen their position and obtain better deals in future.
This background means that Mr Adisorn knows all the ins and outs of construction very well, and for both his condominiums he has opted for precast floors and bricks-and-mortar walls.
The approach is a challenge when it comes to creating modestly priced units – 1.29 million baht for a studio and 1.6 million for one bedroom – since some bigger budget condo developers opt for prefabrication, which is a lot faster.
In fact, the cost of both building techniques is almost equal but the speedier prefab method helps developers clear their bank loans more quickly.
Mr Adisorn said the prefab technique has some weaknesses, among them the need for sleeves to be left in the factory-built panels to fit pipes. The pipes are put in after the walls are assembled and the fitting has to be perfect, because any adjustments would require substantial technical skill.
Although there are doubts about the quality of sealant developers use to affix these panels, in fact most do use good-quality materials, so this is usually not a problem. The major point to keep in mind is that Thai builders are more familiar with the traditional bricks-and-mortar method of construction, and maintenance and repairs are easier.
Both of Tri’s projects target mostly Thai buyers, as unit sizes are smaller than Westerners usually want. Despite the size, the design and layout have been well worked out with even a 27.79 square metre studio at Proud X2 having a petite kitchen.
The units are being sold almost fully furnished with some pieces especially designed for the project.
One interesting item is a coffee table with a rectangular centrepiece that can be raised to the level of a desk.
The 34.75 square metre one-bedroom units have a sliding side table that can be pushed against the wall if needed, with an attractive rug covering the space up to the television set. This arrangement makes the unit look more spacious.
Happy with the progress Tri has made so far, Mr Adisorn has big plans for the future. Long-term he is eyeing the possibility of listing on the stock market to raise capital to continue developing projects.
The immediate goal is to launch one or two projects with an investment of about 500 to 600 million baht next year, but the locations have not yet been finalised.
“Our target for next year is to launch a project a little further away, we haven’t decided yet, and it could be the city centre or areas immediately around it,” he said.
The Chaeng Watthana area has developed rapidly in response to the opening of the new government centre, which has tens of thousands of workers.
However, Mr Adisorn believes the eastern area of Bangkok still looks most promising because of its proximity to Suvarnabhumi Airport and the eastern seaboard.
While all executives in the property business are concerned about political risk, Mr Adisorn says his company’s choices of locations and products should insulate it from any serious impact should there be further unrest.
“The first area to be hit would the big projects in the city centre, especially those that sell to foreigners.
“Pattaya and other resort markets such as Phuket, where there are houses being sold for 40 million baht, would also be affected,” he said.
“But where we are concerned, because we are selling to real end-users there should be less impact because it is different.”
Source : bangkokpost.com