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Hundreds interested in $500,000 South Shore condos none sold yet

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Coastal homes: The Grand Atlantic Condos development on the South Shore(Photo by Akil Simmons)

A two-bedroom condo with an ocean view, a beach and close to Hamilton - for under $500,000.If you can get pre-approval for a mortgage, you could move into one this month!Builder Gilbert Lopes said the 24 condos in phase one of Government's Grand Atlantic affordable housing development have been built and are ready to move into in a few weeks.But the Bermuda Housing Corporation said despite their “million-dollar views”, none of the condos on South Shore Road, Warwick have actually sold yet.However, BHC general manager Major Barrett St Vincent Dill said hundreds have expressed interest in buying one.“We are in the early stages and expect pre-approvals to be submitted from the 200 interested parties shortly,” Major Dill said.“The Grand Atlantic Development has the added incentive of having a million dollar view as well as access to beachfront and (Southlands) national park for relaxation.”Despite tighter financing restrictions by the banks and an overall decline in the housing market, Major Dill said prices will remain at $495,000 for a 1,130 square feet two-bedroom, one-bathroom unit, and then gradually increase, up to $600,000 to $670,000 for an ocean-facing 1480 square foot three-bedroom, two-bathroom unit.“We are confident that the demand is there for prime ocean view residences for qualified persons wishing to own property with a majestic view,” Major Dill said.Lopes, owner of Atlantic Development Ltd., said phases two and three will include 24 and 30 units each and be ready to move into later in the summer and winter.Major Dill said while the condos are aimed at first-time home buyers, pretty much anyone who is attracted by the stunning South Shore views, or is looking at downsizing or condo living may also apply.“The new units are not low cost housing, but affordable housing,” Major Dill stressed.“They are available to all pre-approved and qualified purchasers. The target market is middle income earners that could not afford the demanded market rates of the past for two and three bedroom units.”He said each case will be looked at individually.The BHC advises anyone who is interested in owning one of the condos to take the following steps:l Obtain pre-approval from a bank or lender.l Contact the BHC to officially apply.Explaining the arrangement with the developer, Major Dill said: “BHC will purchase the condos from the developer and then resell to pre-approved buyers.“Interested purchasers should contact their personal lenders to secure financing with the first phase due to come on line at the end of August, 2011.“Once pre-approval is given, BHC should be contacted to start the process of owning a Grand Atlantic unit.”He added: “The properties are very tastefully done and I am confident they will all sell. And the units will all be properly insured at a price that's definitely within reach of the owners.”Mr Lopes said the major construction project has kept around 30 Bermudians and 11 non-Bermudians employed full-time for the past year, a level which will continue through the year.The condos will have a central playground, all major appliances, stainless steel appliances in the premium units. And they will have a standby generator and use alternative energy systems supplied by Ascendant Group.Mr Lopes said work is being carried out to prevent any cliff erosion at the site, and assured it will be 100 percent safe.The Grand Atlantic housing comes after 96 units at Loughlands in Paget were all sold to new homeowners; and the 58 units at Harbour View Village at St David's were allocated to lottery winners and have, according to the BHC, been “fully subscribed”. They were priced at just $199,000.

Ocean view: The outlook from the Grand Atlantic site on the South Shore