Sentosa condo owners sue developer over alleged defects

Owners of the 249-unit The Coast at Sentosa Cove are claiming the developer, Ho Bee Investment, is responsible for a range of faults including termite infestations and staircase flooding. -- PHOTO: DIOS VINCOY JR FOR THE STRAITS TIMES
Owners of the 249-unit The Coast at Sentosa Cove are claiming the developer, Ho Bee Investment, is responsible for a range of faults including termite infestations and staircase flooding. -- PHOTO: DIOS VINCOY JR FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

Unhappy home owners at upscale condominium The Coast at Sentosa Cove are suing the developer over alleged defects such as termite infestations and staircase flooding.

They are claiming the developer, Ho Bee Investment, is responsible for a range of faults in the development's common areas.

Other alleged defects include the incorrect installation of a temporary power cable.

The 99-year leasehold property offers both sea views and views of Sentosa Cove waterways to all its units. These luxury units come with a multimillion-dollar price tag. A 3,100 sq ft unit sold for $4.5 million or $1,452 psf in July.

The developer claims it has the longest stretch of coastline on Sentosa Cove.

Court papers filed with the Supreme Court stated that 108 owners of the 249-unit development had authorised their management corporation to sue for damages and costs.

The corporation claims "numerous defects" had been found before it took over control of the condominium on Dec 11, 2010.

It also said in its statement of claim that it continued to highlight the defects to Ho Bee soon after it took over the management of the property.

Given the defects and when they were found, the corporation said they could not be the result of normal wear and tear.

The plaintiff is claiming costs relating to the defects that amount to $93,085. It is also seeking additional damages, to be assessed by the High Court, if the lawsuit is successful.

The management corporation is also suing three contractors: Kim Seng Heng Engineering Construction, Architects 61 and Bescon Consulting Engineers.

Ho Bee has filed defence papers denying the allegations.

The developer stated that it is prepared to rectify any genuine defect on the common property of The Coast.

Ho Bee said that before the lawsuit was lodged, it had conscientiously reviewed and addressed the corporation's concerns.

It also said it has rectified the defects where necessary.

Ho Bee said it remains committed to rectifying such defects and has made several offers to the management corporation to carry out various rectification works.

But it said that the management corporation should take responsibility where there are issues arising from fair wear and tear or from poor maintenance of the common property.

The plaintiffs are represented by Eldan Law while Ho Bee is being defended by Rodyk & Davidson.

This is the latest run-in between owners of luxury apartments and developers.

Owners of The Sail@Marina Bay have also approved a motion to launch a legal battle against its developer, City Developments, over alleged damaged fixtures including burst water pipes.

Shares of Ho Bee closed unchanged yesterday at $2.07.

feimok@sph.com.sg