Couple reject lucrative offers for flat

Mr Brian Chee, 41, his wife Catherine Low, 38, their daughter Heidi, five, and son Reygan, eight, live in a top-floor four-room flat in Punggol East. They are happy there and have no intention to sell despite attractive resale prices.
Mr Brian Chee, 41, his wife Catherine Low, 38, their daughter Heidi, five, and son Reygan, eight, live in a top-floor four-room flat in Punggol East. They are happy there and have no intention to sell despite attractive resale prices.ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG

Step into Mr Brian Chee and Ms Catherine Low's four-room flat in Punggol, and one is greeted by a steady breeze and stunning views of Serangoon Reservoir, Pulau Ubin and even Malaysia.

Little wonder then that the couple have no intention of selling their 18th-floor flat, even though property agents have come to them with lucrative offers.

Last year, an agent promised them $600,000 for their unit - more than three times the $170,000 they paid for the flat.

But they were quick to refuse.

"We were not tempted at all," said Mr Chee, a 41-year-old stay-at-home father. "We like the greenery and environment, and it's very quiet and peaceful here."

The couple moved into their top-floor unit in Block 167A, Punggol East in 2007. They applied for the Build-To-Order flat in 2003.

EASY DECISION

We were not tempted at all. We like the greenery and environment here.

It's very quiet and peaceful.''

MR BRIAN CHEE, a stay-at-home father

Mr Chee, a former interior designer, left his job four years ago to take care of their son, eight, and daughter, five.

Being close to nature has another perk, added Mr Chee. The family of four are often able to go cycling together at the nearby Punggol Waterway.

While some of their neighbours made tidy profits from selling their homes, Ms Low is cautious about following their example.

The 38-year-old accountant said: "If we sell, it definitely won't be cheap to get another flat in a good location. What if we need another loan?"

She added: "The children go to school in Punggol and so, would have to adapt to a new environment if we move."

But Mr Chee said he has toyed with the idea of selling before.

He said: "If there's a three-generation flat in a good location, I would consider buying and moving in with my parents.

"My parents are getting old and it'll be good to take care of them. They can help look after the children too."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 07, 2015, with the headline 'Couple reject lucrative offers for flat'. Print Edition | Subscribe