By DAVID TAN | firstname.lastname@example.org
Prices of new homes in primary market too high for most people
Geh: 76% of urban wage earners can’t afford homes in the primary market.
Some 70% of residential property transacted in the country today are in the secondary market, while the remaining 30% are newly launched projects.
Raine & Horne Malaysia (Penang) director Michael Geh said more people were going after secondary property because of the pricing which ranged between RM72,000 and RM350,000.
“This market has been very active in the last 12 months and I foresee that it will be very active for the next six months, in terms of sales and rental,” he said at the recent Malaysian Secondary Property Exhibition (MASPEX) Penang 2013 at the Penang Times Square.
“Another reason for its popularity is that the secondary property is already built which means buyers can move in immediately.”
Geh said that in the primary market, many residential units were now being sold at a high price due to market demand and inflation among other factors.
“It is only due to the recent Bank Negara credit curbs that the rise in property prices has slowed a bit,” he said.
“These high price tags for new residential projects has made owning a home a distant dream for the middle class.
“The rental market will thrive in such circumstances as more turn to renting instead of buying their own homes.”
On the affordability level of new houses, Geh said that according to the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan, about 76% of urban wage earners in the country earned RM5,000 or less each month.
“This means 76% of the urban working population can’t afford to purchase their own homes in the primary market,” he said.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents president Siva Shanker said between 5,000 and 7,000 people visited the three-day fair.
“We received some 2,000 enquiries, and about 200 of them turned into sales,” he said.
“We are still gathering information on the deals closed at the fair.”
An estimated RM1.5billion worth of secondary property was showcased during the three-day event.
The event featured more than 1,000 units of residential property in Penang and a few in Kuala Lumpur.