RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Boat-dwelling expats face risk of eviction

Discovery Bay Marina Club urges tenants to move boats before December 31.

Bloomberg reports that the growing community that has turned to the waters for their home needs after failing to find a home in land-starved Hong Kong face the risk of eviction as the Discovery Bay Marina Club urges its tenants to move their boats before December 31 to make way for extensive renovations. 

The move is set to impact around 180 families usually expats as well as boat builders with unsold vessels and financing firms like Hitachi Capital Corp. and Orix Corp. who face potential defaults on boat mortgages.

Houseboats docked at Hong Kong’s marinas, harbours and typhoon shelters have emerged as a cost-effective option than undersized and overpriced flats of the same size as vessels in Discovery Bay with at least 2,000 square feet of gross floor area ranges from $42,000 to $150,000 monthly.

Also read: Waiting time for public housing hits 18-year high

Yachts, cruisers and open cruisers classified under Class IV are viewed by Hong Kong law as exclusively for pleasure purposes and violators could face a fine of $10,000, reports South China Morning Post, however the law is not tightly enforced. Around 9.900 licensed pleasure vessels were recorded in 2017, data from Marine Department show.

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