Making final payment for my Cambodia property investment – The Bridge

January 21

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In December last year, I received a letter from Oxley WorldBridge, the property developer for The Bridge. In the letter, it was mentioned that my Cambodia property is completing ahead of time and they attached a payment notice for final payment.

That means it's time for me to pay up the remaining 50% of the property purchase price before the end of January. As I did not take any bank loan for this purchase, everything is paid with cash.

It's been such a long time in the making because if you've been following my blog, I made the purchase in 2014 and since then, I've been diligently saving a significant portion of my monthly salary to pay for this property.

Here's a photo from Oxley WorldBridge's website showing the status of construction of The Bridge in November 2017.

Minor financial adjustment needed, but all good

To be frank, I was expecting The Bridge to complete in June 2018 so I planned to set aside a portion of my monthly saving to have the final payment sum ready by June. For the property to complete ahead of schedule meant I had to make some adjustments to come up with the cash needed.

Firstly, I sold off my STI ETF and ABF Bond ETF portfolio that was accumulated monthly through my POSB Invest-Saver regular savings plan. Fortunately, the market was performing well and I netted around 3.3% gain after selling it.

Lastly, I liquidated my remaining bullion gold coins to top up the remainder of the final payment. The sale price did not yield me much gain as the gold rush was long over and I've made my profits a long time ago. In fact, I did not even record these gold coins in my portfolio as they were that insignificant.

What worked in my favour was the fact that the currency exchange rate between US Dollars and Singapore Dollars was down to $1.32 from a high of $1.37 in October 2017. Lucky me!

Mixed feelings about the property completion

While I didn't like the fact that I had to liquidate my POSB Invest-Saver regular savings plan to finance the purchase, I'm grateful to be able to lock in the profits and pay off the property purchase at the start of 2018. I see this as an opportunity to revamp my investment portfolio. I have some ideas in mind to reduce my portfolio's dependence on Singapore's economy and instead, focus on global economies. But that's another blog post for another time.

I wasn't totally sure about where Cambodia property investments are headed when I made the deposit for a SOHO unit in The Bridge in 2014 and to be frank, I'm not 100% sure that I made the right call in this purchase today. We'll probably find out in another 5-10 years time.

I've receive a few comments and emails about this investment and my advice remains the same. Go in with both eyes open, read everything twice, and only invest with money you can afford to lose.

My plans for my SOHO unit at The Bridge

As of now, I'm committed to paying off the full purchase price of the property (in fact, I've already done that before this article was posted) and I'm definitely in it for the long run. Let's see how the property investment performs in 5-10 years time.

A few ideas that comes to mind right now are:

  1. If the rental works out for the next 3 years and the conditions of the extension in rental proposed by the property developer 3 years later are good, I'm contented to remain as a little landlord.
  2. If I find a buyer who can offer a hefty profit on top of my purchase price, I might consider selling off the property.
  3. Having travelled to Phnom Penh before, I am 50-50 on the living conditions. If the Cambodia economy blossoms and living conditions improve, I might also consider using the property as home base for retirement and rent out my HDB flat for passive retirement income.

The possibilities are endless and anything can happen. I'm going to keep my options open and see where life takes me.

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About the author 

Mickey J

Mickey is your typical white-collar Singaporean who works regular hours in a job with a strong passion on personal finance. He writes mostly about personal finance, investing, insurance and retirement planning. He also embraces the Financial Independence and Retire Early movement (FIRE), tweaking the FIRE concept to his lifestyle.

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  • Congrats on being a proud owner of a Cambodian property. I’m considering an investment in a retail property there under Oxley.
    Did you have to hire a local cambodian lawyer to review the clauses in the agreement ?
    Any other due diligence to take before signing the papers?

    • Hi Shan,

      Thanks! If you are purchasing a property that is developed by Oxley and their Cambodian partners, you probably will be making the purchase in their Singapore office so the documents are all in English.

      I didn’t hire a Cambodian lawyer to review the agreement because I didn’t have any contacts in Cambodia. I just took some time to go over every single page and signed only after I’m comfortable that I understand what I’m buying.

      For due diligence, you can check out the government website to understand your rights and obligations to your property.

      You can check out this link: http://www.cambodiainvestment.gov.kh/ for more details as well.

      • Hi Mickey, I chanced upon your blog while going through Cambodian property investment searches. I am also a property owner of a Cambodian property and would like to get connected with other owners like yourself, appreciate it if we could get connected or be refered to join your owners’ chat group. Thank you for sharing!

        • Hi Lin,

          I’m currently in a owners’ chat group where everyone owns a unit at The Bridge as a participant and not an admin. Unfortunately, they may not be open to people who own other Cambodian properties as they want to keep the conversations specific to The Bridge. I hope you do eventually find a Singaporean group that talks about Cambodian properties.

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