Regent Garden owners ordered to complete en bloc sale to Allgreen

Regent Garden owners ordered to complete en bloc sale to Allgreen

 

By Joyce Teo

 

OWNERS at Regent Garden must complete the collective sale of their condominium after the High Court handed down a landmark decision in favour of developer Allgreen Properties yesterday.

 

The $34 million sale, which the Strata Titles Board (STB) threw out in late January, must be finalised by May 16.

 

The decision ends one of the more unusual collective sale disputes.

 

Initially, 25 owners signed off on the sale in April last year, but they later tried to overturn the deal, claiming, among other things, that the condo was undervalued.

 

Although the owners had opted for a fixed $34 million price, they were unhappy that a development charge payable by Allgreen turned out to be much lower than expected.

 

There were six dissenting owners in April, however. They later withdrew their objections, but the case still went to the STB.

 

The STB usually assesses a sale if there are objections. In this case, however, the sale was now unanimous. Yet, it said it was still required to examine the case, whether objections were filed or not, to satisfy itself that the sale was made in good faith. It axed the deal in January, ruling that it had not been done in good faith.

 

Allgreen had already asked the High Court for an order to get the majority owners to complete the sale. It argued that the STB had no need to even examine the sale, as all owners had agreed to sell.

 

The court agreed, ruling that allegations of mistake and breach of contract were without merit and that the STB‘s decision to halt the sale of the West Coast Road estate was irrelevant. It also ordered the 25 owners to pay Allgreen’s costs.

 

The developer said in a statement last night that the 25 owners who signed the deal had subsequently asked Allgreen to raise its sale price. It refused.

 

‘Allgreen had entered into a solemn contract. It was not prepared on account of the baseless allegations to renegotiate the price,’ it said.

 

The developer also described the decision as a ‘victory for the sanctity of contract’ and sent a ‘strong message’ that owners would be held to their bargain.

 

Allgreen was represented by senior counsel Davinder Singh, while the 25 majority owners were represented by senior counsel Molly Lim.

 

Source: Straits Times

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