Written by Charles Tan from kopiandproperty.com
High-rise units are getting to be all too common these days, especially with the availability of land decreasing rapidly.
A small plot of land in a mature neighbourhood, for example, could only be used for a high-rise project, else the developer would have to price the landed units at prices higher than the sky!
That would be suicidal for the company because the large majority of the population wouldn’t be able to afford those prices.
So today, we’ll be looking at the 7 advantages of buying a high-rise unit, and just why it shouldn’t be considered an inferior choice compared to landed properties.
1) Price Advantage
In terms of absolute price per unit, it’ll be much cheaper to get a high-rise unit than buying a landed property with a similar sized built-up.
We must keep in mind that Malaysian households are usually working-class people and we don’t have the privilege of unlimited funds to buy any property we like.
Thus, a high-rise unit provides that accessibility of a roof over our heads and it comes with affordability too.
2) Location Advantage
It’s either buying cheaper for bigger but at far away locales, or buying cheaper and nearer to established amenities but smaller. This happens in all major property markets.
The most expensive properties would obviously be in the city centre, and the cheapest ones would be the furthest away, if every other factor is considered equal.
Thus, if you’d like an established area with lots of amenities but at prices that don’t kill your bank account, the new launches to consider would usually be high-rise.
3) Size Advantage
Yes, we know, you’re surprised about this one! Size, ha, this must be a joke right? Well, not really, if you look at things from a different point of view.
Let’s take a family with kids, for example. If you’re buying a landed home without a dedicated clubhouse for example, then the kids would only be running inside the home, and around the porch.
Usually, the average compound is about 20 ft x 20 ft, which would translate to 400 sq ft, and only contains a garden.
Now, compare this to the typical facility area in a condo (some can have more than one floor dedicated to facilities!), which can easily be a few thousand sq ft.
There are projects where the facility floor, together with a jogging track, is already 40,000 sq ft!
Today, there are many Transit-Oriented Developments (TOD) where public transportation is just a walk away.
This is something very important to consider because traffic jams, tolls, petrol and even parking charges will get worse/higher in the future.
Buying a high-rise with this accessibility gives us the flexibility of choosing to drive or not to drive. The advantage is ours!
5) Future Potential
This is something that’s very important to keep in mind, because if we’re buying for our own stay as well as for potential future investment, then we need to get something which is affordable today and affordable in the future too.
A RM400,000 property today may rise to RM600,000 in the next 10 years for example. This is still considered to be within the reach of a number of Malaysians.
However, a RM800,000 property today will meanwhile find few buyers who could afford a RM1.2 million price tag – even in the next 10 years.
6) Safety Concerns
Let’s face it. Safety has been a primary concern for everyone and for those who have to travel for work, it’s important that your family and property is located in a place where there are a few security layers.
Even better if it’s in a good neighbourhood with a notable reputation! People are willing to pay more just for safety alone.
Condominiums usually already come with a few tiers of security, with the most basic ones including 24-hour CCTV surveillance, access cards for residents only, and security guards.
7) Choices, Choices!
Due to the oversupply and competitive property prices of today, developers are launching more high-rise units, and every new launch seems to be more attractive than the earlier one.
There are those with double volume ceilings (duplex units); those with a central park of 150,000 sq ft and themed pocket gardens; those with a man-made beach as part of the extensive list of facilities; and even condominiums with connections to a popular mall AND a train station!
All of this means that there are lots of different choices to cater to different needs and wants from buyers.
It’s Not All Sunshine And Roses For Buying A High-Rise Unit
While it would seem that there are more advantages to buying a high-rise property, there are definitely disadvantages too.
One factor that’s often mentioned would be the lack of privacy (plus the potential for noise pollution) since it’s higher density.
In fact, bad neighbours exist whether it’s in a condominium unit or a terrace home. Good neighbours too.
Another one would be the need to pay maintenance fees. If this is really the deal-breaker, then perhaps a non-gated and guarded landed home may be a better choice.
The newer launches of gated and guarded homes will usually have a strata titled, and may even have a clubhouse, but one needs to pay membership fees to enjoy the facilities.
Condominiums are a good choice for growing families needing space and affordability at the same time.
It also provides safety to the older generation who stay alone, travels often and may only be hosting a family get-together once a year.
Last but not least, with the never ending urbanisation into the major cities in Malaysia, high-rise units are the only logical way to go. Buy one and enjoy it.
Charles Tan is the founder-cum-executive editor of kopiandproperty.com. He writes from the perspective of a working professional, and views property investment as a long-term decision.
His articles and views have appeared in many national newspapers, magazines and property listing portals. He has also appeared in TV shows speaking about property investments, and has spoken regularly at various property events.