What’s The Deal With Dual Key Condos?

PropertyGuru Editorial Team
What’s The Deal With Dual Key Condos?
You might have come across the term ‘dual key’ while hunting for properties, especially high-rise developments, but perhaps didn’t quite understand what it meant.
Read on as we break down what the deal is with dual key condos, and find out whether this type of layout is suitable for you and your lifestyle!

What Is The Dual Key Concept?

Put simply, a dual key condo combines two units under one title. The idea behind it is that you have two separate units, each with its own individual bedroom and ensuite bathroom for privacy.
There are common areas like the main entrance, kitchen, and living area which is for sharing. In Malaysia, there are a number of different configurations for dual key condos, depending on the developer.
The main selling point is that it allows people the flexibility to own a unit, and choose to split the usage of the property, based on individual needs and preferences.

How Did The Dual Key Concept Came About?

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There are a few things that limit the number of units a developer can build on a piece of land. We take a look at the three main issues that have led to the dual key concept:

1) Shape of the land

Building on a square or rectangle parcel of land means not having to worry about the number of units that can be built, compared to constructing on an odd-shaped piece of land, with the same area size.

2) Plot ratio

Plot ratios determine the density of a building. Local authorities look into matters such as the existing density and infrastructure, access points to the development, and traffic flow.

3) Car park requirements

Property developers need to follow the Minimum Parking Requirements (MPR), as determined by the local councils, in any given area.
It requires developers to build a minimum number of car park bays for each unit, and extra parking space for visitors. The MPR differs according to the location, project, and other circumstances.
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All these factors ultimately determine the size of each unit in any development, and is one of the reasons why developers come up with different unit sizes, aside from giving buyers a variety of choices.
But, the main issue still remains: The existence of the MPR, which is deemed as a cost to developers.
To solve this issue, large units were built and split into two dwellings, which meant developers could meet the MPR, while giving Malaysians the option of a dual key concept lifestyle.

Is The Dual Key Lifestyle For You?

It may seem odd at first, but after a lack of social interactions from the lockdowns, it might not be a bad idea to explore co-living arrangements, especially if you and your friends have spoken about living together!
Before we explore the advantages, some things to keep in mind regarding dual key condos, include:

1) Size does matter!

Depending on the layout, one of the sections might be smaller, creating a possible conflict of interest between two people looking to get a place together.

2) Proximity to tenant or landlord

Some property owners who are deciding to rent out their unit might not be keen on living so close to their tenants, and the opposite also holds true.

3) Shared bills

If not established from the beginning, splitting payment for utility bills every month can lead to bigger issues, especially if one person uses more water or electricity than the other.

So, Why Should You Choose The Dual Key Concept Lifestyle?

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We’ve come to the main meat of this article, where we discover the reasons behind the rising popularity of this type of layout. Without further ado, let’s begin!

1) Rent subsidy

If you live in a dual key type of condo, you will be able to rent the other unit out, which will allow you to earn some extra cash (without having to move out yourself!).

2) Large families

If you treasure privacy but also need to take care of your parents (or in-laws), a dual key condo lets you enjoy privacy plus peace of mind, knowing your parents are safe next door.
Are your children still living with you? Not anymore. Now they get their own space, with some oversight from you. Alternatively, you can turn the additional section into your very own WFH space. Win-win situation, we say!

3) Investor

Double the rent with two tenants at once! Even if one leaves, you still have another tenant to cover costs, at least till you can find a new replacement.
Once tourism reopens locally and globally, pent-up demand to travel will give you the opportunity to turn your unit into an Airbnb to host multiple guests. Talk about a cash cow!

Where Should You Begin Looking For One?

So, if your curiousity has been piqued by the idea of a dual key condo unit, check out this list of properties to begin your search for the ideal home:

1) Agile Mont Kiara, KL

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Built on approximately 10 acres of freehold land, this development offers seven different layouts comprising a total of 813 units, spread across 11 blocks.
Two of the blocks (also known as the Elite zone) come with the dual key concept, and comprise a total of 70 semi-furnished units, with a built-up size of 2,131 sq ft.

2) Expressionz Professional Suites, KL

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Towering at 48 storeys and 38 storeys respectively, this development is located in the heart of KL, and covers 1.3 acres of land.
The dual key units come with versatile layouts that allow owners the flexibility to divide it up into two major living spaces for their own personal needs.

3) 8th and Stellar, Sri Petaling

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8th & Stellar is a mixed-use project consisting of two towers (with three levels of facilities!), and standing on 2.2 acres of leasehold land.
There are six shop lots as well as the two blocks of residences, which contain 138 duplex lofts and 522 serviced residences. It is also the first project in the area to offer dual key units.

4) R&F Princess Cove, JB

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This mixed-use development is built over 12 acres of freehold land, and consists of a whopping total of 15 towers, all of which are hovering at 35 stories high.
All of the serviced apartment units come partially furnished, with a wide range of built-up sizes, from 469 to 1,386 sq ft (the dual key one stands at 1,318 sq ft).

2021 is the best time to shop around for the ideal home for your needs and lifestyle. Don’t forget to consider your future needs, as well as the needs of your family, when making a decision. A dual key concept might just be the balance we’ve been searching for in life!

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