RUMAWIP, or Residensi Wilayah as it was recently rebranded as, is a government initiative designed to provide affordable housing for first-time buyers.
RUMAWIP, once known as the Federal Territories Affordable Housing Project, now operates under the housing project title of Residensi Wilayah.
The goals, however, remain the same – helping low-income, middle-income, and first-time buyers take that important step onto the property ladder.
So if that’s you, then you might want to read on to discover the how and why of if RUMAWIP is for you.
Who is eligible for RUMAWIP?
RUMAWIP is a housing project initiative which delivers affordable housing across the Federal Territories of Malaysia. Eligibility is assessed under a priority status, with the following conditions (of course):
- 21 years old and above.
- Born, work, or live in any of the Federal Territories.
- Priority given to those who do not currently already own property.
With a focus on affordable homes for lower and middle-income workers, RUMAWIP also comes with some firm income restrictions:
- Individual income no more than RM10,000 per month.
- Married couples’ income no more than RM15,000 per month.
- Only one offer of RUMAWIP per household.
What properties does Residensi Wilayah apply to?
Residensi Wilayah is a housing project which develops and delivers new properties specifically for the purpose of affordable homes. That means the unit sizes in each development are capped in terms of size and cost.
- Maximum cost of RM300,000
- Units have a built-up size of no less than 900 sq ft
- Has a tagline of "Residensi Wilayah Residensiku"
Prices at the lower end of the scale vary by region of development, but low-priced properties within the scheme in the Labuan region were once sold at RM52,000, while it was RM63,000 in Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya.
The recent change to Residensi Wilayah is also designed to reduce the density of this affordable housing, with a typical RUMAWIP housing project reducing the number of units from around 400 to 250.
How do you apply for Residensi Wilayah?
The first step is to check if you’re eligible. Assuming you meet the requirement of residency, place of work, or birth place, plus you’re within the income limits, then you’ve overcome the first hurdle for RUMAWIP.
Next up, you need to register your interest and apply for the scheme on the RUMAWIP online portal. This portal is your gateway to finding a RUMAWIP home.
You can then browse a list of available projects, offering insight into the types of properties and locations available within your desired area.
If you register for a scheme that is not yet open for applications, you will receive an email to confirm once applications have opened.
You will need a range of documents to prove eligibility and apply for a RUMAWIP project.
- Application form
- Letter of Oath
- Proof of Identity Card of applicants
- Marriage Certificate (if applicable)
- Bank statements or payslips
- Utility bill (proof of address)
- Copy of Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA) for existing property (if applicable)
There may be other required documentation depending on your particular circumstances. You can check in with the relevant body when submitting your application to ensure you’ve included the relevant paperwork.
Each property is managed by a separate body, and as such, your documents are not directly submitted to a central agency.
Check in with the property managers or developers at a specific property to ensure you’re using the right details.
Assigning of properties is done by a ballot, which is undertaken at a specific time, and must be physically attended by the applicant or a designated proxy assigned using a Letter of Proxy.
Balloting varies by developer, but will require a financial down payment up to and including the total 10% deposit fee if successfully picked.
Is RUMAWIP a good deal?
You might be asking, is this all too good to be true? The answer, we can safely tell you, is a "no"!
RUMAWIP is a housing project designed to offer accessible and affordable housing to citizens of the Federal Territories. That government support comes with some perks!
These homes are sold at below-market rate, often including amenities and benefits such as playgrounds and swimming pools, which add that extra positive touch to the home life of residents.
This means that these homes are often in high demand, and priority is usually given to first-time buyers as a result.
It’s important to note that Residensi Wilayah is a scheme designed to offer affordable homes, but that still means you need to find your own 10% deposit for the property purchase.
There are also limitations to ownership of a RUMAWIP home that you should be aware of.
You cannot sell your home within 10 years of its purchase, making it a genuine home for your family rather than a quick investment opportunity.
Special dispensation is given for transferring ownership to a family member, however.
There are also strict criteria on renting out your RUMAWIP-purchased home, providing rental only to local tenants meeting the required criteria. Check out the RUMAWIP portal to find out more.
What else do I need to know?
If you’re thinking that RUMAWIP might be for you, then you’re not alone. These are often oversubscribed projects, with the demand for affordable housing regularly outstripping the available supply. With that in mind, here are some other questions you might want to know.
1) Can retirees apply?
Yes, you don’t have to be a young homebuyer to apply for RUMAWIP. Eligible retirees can apply under certain terms and conditions. Check out the RUMAWIP portal for more details.
2) What happens on Ballot Day?
This varies by developer. In heavily subscribed developments, the likelihood is you will draw a random designated unit number, then have the choice to take the unit or leave it.
You may not be allowed to draw an alternative unit. In properties with lower demand, you may have the opportunity to select a specific unit.
3) Do I need a Letter of Proxy?
If you’re worried about attending the ballot in person, the Letter of Proxy provides a legal proxy who can act on your behalf. Check out the sample below for a rough idea:
4) Can I rent out my RUMAWIP house?
In limited circumstances, you can rent out a RUMAWIP property to other local residents. Check out the terms and conditions on the RUMAWIP website to find out more.
5) Can I upgrade to a bigger unit?
Yes, owners can upgrade to a larger unit. However, you will be restricted on the selling price of your previous unit within the terms and conditions set by the developer.
6) How many projects can I apply for?
Applicants are limited to a maximum of 3 applications at any given time.
7) Can I cancel my application if I wanted to choose a new project?
As long as your application hasn’t been reviewed by the developer or RUMAWIP officer, you may terminate it, if you so wish.
However, if it has already been reviewed, you would need to submit an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
In your email, you’d need to submit the following information as well:
- Full name
- Identity Card (IC) Number
- Project to be dropped
- Reason for cancellation
Do note that if you’ve already received an offer letter for a RUMAWIP project, and you wish to terminate that, you’d need to send a letter along with your reason for cancellation.
You’ll then be blacklisted from applying for any RUMAWIP project for the next 12 months after the project is canceled, so choose wisely!
RUMAWIP is a great opportunity to find affordable housing, but you still need the finances to take that next step! Check out our in-depth guide to down payments and explore some helpful tips on finding your first deposit. Good luck, and happy house hunting!