Sunday, 20 January 2013

Penang residential prices to rise 8%


RESIDENTIAL property prices in Penang are likely to rise by 7% to 8% by the first half of 2013 due to the steady demand and a stronger gross domestic product (GDP) projection for 2013.

< Geh says new properties launched with a bundled-up financial package would be most popular.

According to the latest Finance Ministry report, the GDP forecast for 2013 is between 4.5% and 5.5%, riding on the growth in the agriculture, construction, mining, manufacturing, and services sectors.

Raine & Horne Malaysia director Michael Geh says new properties launched with a bundled-up financial package would be most popular.

Saw says harder loans may be cause of lower volume. “This is why this segment will perform better than those properties in the sub-sales market, where the buyer and seller have to do more paper work,” he says.

Saw says harder loans may be cause of lower volume.>

Currently, the price for terraced property in prime locations such as Tanjung Bungah and Tanjung Tokong is around RM1.2mil to RM1.5mil.

The selling price of development land in prime locations ranges between RM450 and RM1,000 per sq ft.

“The stringent guidelines for housing loan, now based on the evaluation of net income rather than on gross income and the difficulty in obtaining the desired valuation report will mean that the sales of condominiums in the secondary market will face more challenges,” he says.

The new guidelines from the Penang government for foreign purchasers to buy only high-rise and landed properties priced from RM1mil and RM2mil respectively will impact adversely on foreign property transactions in Penang, according to Geh.

“More foreigners will prefer to rent than to buy, thus one can expect rental yield in the state to increase gradually,” he adds.

According to the latest National Property Information Centre's (Napic) property market report, total transactions for residential properties in Penang hit around 18,316 for the first nine months of 2012, with a transacted value of RM5.2bil.

The whole of 2011 saw the state registering some 30,674 residential property transactions valued at RM7.7bil.

Geh says the total volume of property transacted for 2012 was unlikely to catch up with 2011's.

“That the total value of property transactions has risen although the volume transacted has decreased is not surprising, as this is normally the trend,” he adds.

PPC International Sdn Bhd director Mark Saw says the lower volume of transactions may be because housing loans are harder to obtain nowadays.

“Another reason could be that the preferred choice of properties might not be available,” he says.

Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents deputy president Siva Shanker says Malaysia is unique as property prices have not dropped following the decline in transactions.

“In fact property prices will hold and then shoot up when times are good again,” he says.

Penang Master Builders & Building Materials Dealers Association president Lim Kai Seng says construction cost will likely be maintained in the first quarter of 2013.

“Although sand prices have gone up, the smaller volume of construction jobs available is offseting the impact of rising sand prices.

”Due to the competition for jobs, construction cost will be maintained,” he says.

The price of sand per load of 30 tonnes is around RM1,200, compared to about RM800 in early 2012.

Since the price of cement went up in August, the cost of construction has increased by about 3%, Lim says.

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