It's actually only 1,900 sq ft. (ST 11/4/1997)
A couple put down a $141,500 deposit on a Pasir Panjang terrace house which they were told had a built-in area of 2,5000
When they started making renovation plans, they found the area to be far less, at only about 1,900 sq.ft.
So they called off the deal, and went to court to get their money back.
They were successful. Mr Ng Buay Hock and his wife saw a newspaper advertisement said the property had a land area of
1750 sq ft and a built-in area of 2,400 sq ft.
The Ngs were living in a flat then.
They visited the house on two occasions during which the agent, Mr Geoffrey Lim, told them that the built-in area was
about 2,500 sq ft. The seller Mr Tan Keng Huat, confirmed the fugure too, said the Ngs.
The Ngs and the tans struck a deal at $1.43 million.
"Six days later, the Ngs' solicitors told the Ngs that the land area had been found to be only 1,708 sq ft not 1,750
The Ngs negotiated with the Tans for a reduction in the purchase price.
Both parties finally agreed to a price of $1.415 million.
But a bigger shock awaited the Ngs when they exercised their option to purchase and started making renovation plans.
They learnt that the built-in area measured only about 1,900 sq.ft. and called off the deal.
Justice Warren Khoo, whose decision was reported recentlty in the Academy Digest, held that the Tans be responsible for
Mr Tan denied giving his agent, Mr Lim, information about the built-in area, and denied responsibility for his agent.
He said it was Mr Lim who exaggerated the size of the built-in area.
Justice Khoo ruled otherwise, saying that it was more likely than not that Mr Tan had told Mr Lim that the built-in area
was 2,500 sq ft.
And Mr Tan should not deny liability for Mr Lim's representations to the buyers, the judge added.
To the judge, Mr Tan clearly know that his agent had advertised the built-in area first as 2,400 sq ft and, in subsequent
advertisements, 2,500 sq ft.
He ordered the Tans to return to the Ngs the deposit and pay for the $8,207 conveyancing costs with interest.