I believe most of you who lived in Singapore in the 80’s and probably the 90’s should have heard before of the five Cs (Cash, Credit Card, Car, Condominium and Country Club). Many of us have been trying hard to possess these five items, in hope to impress others of their financial status. Because of that, the price to pay to own three of the five items, namely car, condominium and country club membership, have rose to new highs year after year.
After condominium, owning a country club membership is probably the next most expensive item on the list. With a one-time fees ranging from a few thousand dollars to up to S$250,000 for a membership to the Singapore Island Country Club, members still have to pay a monthly fee of up to a few hundreds as maintenance fees. Although people are slowly losing interest in owning a country club membership, trading the country club membership is still a means to make money.
Well of course, with every money-earning opportunities there will be risks involved. Just recently, the Singapore Government announced the location of the Singapore-KL high speed rail (HSR) terminus to be located at where the Jurong Country Club is currently located. The club has since stopped all trading in its membership, citing that it would be unfair for unsuspecting buyers who does not know that the 67ha plot and the club will be handed over the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) by November 2016.
While it may be bad news for the Jurong Country Club members, the announcement of the Singapore HSR site brought good news to some members from the other country clubs. Following the news of the announcement, the membership prices of the country club island-wide had spiked overnight, with at least two country club membership prices being traded at least S$2,000 more as members from Jurong Country Club are looking for other clubs to join before the club vacates its premises.
Like some speculators who will purchase private properties that are likely to be en-bloc, there are some speculators who are snapping up the Jurong Country Club memberships, before the freeze in the membership trading, in hope to gain a windfall from the payout as the prices tumbles from the news.
The Bottom Line
The Jurong Country Club is just once incident that portrays the risk involved in trading a country club membership. With a shortage of land in Singapore, it would be a matter of time when the Singapore Government will stop leasing the land to the clubs or even “buy” back the land from these clubs for public use before the lease is up. However, even with risks involved, it would not stop people from trading country club memberships.