Buy houses while prices are still low, says Sheda

Diane Foo Eu LynnFebruary 22, 2017

 

Now is a good time to purchase residential properties in Malaysia as prices are expected to rise soon due to a variety of factors, according to the Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Sheda), reported the Borneo Post.

There are many factors that are set to increase the cost of building houses, such as the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and falling ringgit, which is expect to drive up the cost of imported construction materials, said Dr. Christopher Ngui, Chairman of Sheda’s Kuching branch.

“Yet, home prices are still not going up at the moment as most developers are still willing to maintain current prices, or are still selling properties from previous projects.”

However, developers might start taking into account these additional expenses when they roll out their new residential units over the next few months. Ngui explained that this trend is based on historical records of home prices after a downturn.

“I believe those interested should seriously consider buying now, especially those with cash,” he said during a press conference promoting Sheda’s Home and Property Roadshow 2017, where major property developers will showcase their properties up for sale.

Moreover, Bank Negera Malaysia (BNM) will set-up a booth to give visitors their Central Credit Reference Information System (CCRIS), which is needed in securing a housing loan.

“Getting your CCRIS can help you see whether you’re eligible for any of BNM’s programmes that are aimed to help first-time buyers or homebuyers in general.”

“Even if you’re not eligible, you can use this time to figure out what exactly is causing your ineligibility and fix it before it is too late,” noted Ngui, adding that visitors can also get financial advice from the Credit Counselling and Debt Management Agency (AKPK), which will be present at the event.

Meanwhile, Sheda officials revealed that one way to lower home prices in Sarawak is for the state government to approve residential buildings with higher density.

“Currently, many local developers are restricted to a density of under 30 houses per hectare of land, compared to the 30 to 50 density for PR1MA projects.”

“We have submitted for approval for higher density projects to the relevant authorities and only hope that we are able to gain equal treatment to PR1MA developers,” said Ngui.

Queried on whether the higher density would impact the residents of these buildings, Sheda’s Organising Chairman Peter Lau Hui Han believes it will unlikely have a detrimental effect on their quality of living.

“Density is subjective for different areas. For example, in West Malaysia where land is scarcer, density of housing units per hectare of land could reach as high as 200 units.”

“Compared to the average 24 to 30 in Sarawak, an increase to 50 should not affect the quality of living at all, and could in fact enhance it instead as we would be able to provide more affordable housing in better locations.”

Sheda Kuching Branch’s first Home and Property Roadshow will be held at the ground level of Boulevard Shopping Mall on the 3rd to the 5th day of March.

 

Diane Foo Eu Lynn, Senior Content Specialist at PropertyGuru, edited this story. To contact her about this or other stories email diane@propertyguru.com.my

 

For more information on new homes, check out PropertyGuru’s New Property Launches and Project Reviews.

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