Many of my Singaporean friends have asked me if Iskandar is worth buying. My answer remains the same, it depends on YOU. Then, I gave them a three questions. Would HDB flats be cheaper in future? Would the connections between Iskandar and Singapore be better than today or worse? Would the population in Singapore be growing or decreasing? The answers would already give you concrete reasons why buying in Iskandar is a must but tread carefully. I personally feel there are some projects which may just be worth buying, at least for now due to it being priced way too high for you to do anything beyond renting it out at a loss until the day you can sell. However, beyond just Iskandar, Penang should also be a consideration. Seriously, I am serious.
None of them have asked me if they should buy Penang though. Let me briefly tell them as well why buy Penang even though it is so far away compared to Singapore. I seriously feel Penang is the best buy for middle income Singaporean family instead of Australia. If you are the top 5% wealthy in Singapore, you may stop reading this article now. Buy anywhere you want and stay anywhere you want.
First reason. Affordability. It’s not cheap, for sure. Regardless of what the people has been saying about prices being expensive etc, a condo of 1,000sf in Penang is still nowhere near the price of a typical HDB flat in a less favoured area in Singapore. Coupled that with the fact that Penang is an even smaller island than Singapore which is still growing due to urbanisation in Malaysia and you can see where the price is heading to.
Second reason. Distance. Distance?! Distance is really secondary to actual duration. Actually, going to Penang may just take you a maximum of 2 hours. One hour for flight, One hour for check in. Or even lesser if you have printed the boarding pass earlier. I am not sure if there are a lot of places where there are so many connecting flights with Singapore daily but Penang is one of them. Would the number of flights decrease in future or increase? The answer is clear.
Third reason. Language and Food. You can find teachers in Penang who teaches Hokkien to foreigners. Need I say more? For food, I do not wish to elaborate on this. If you are Singaporean and you still insist that the food in Singapore is better than Penang, I will let you ‘win’, with a wide grin.
Many other reasons. UNESCO Heritage Site, connectivity to other great places in Malaysia such as Ipoh, Taiping and even KL is a mere 4 hour drive away (348km). You are also connected to Hattyai (a favourite past time of Penangites). Real beach even if not as amazing as Redang or Perhentian or Tioman but it’s right at your door step. Lots of international events including the longest bridge run in the world. Lots more reasons but I leave it as it is. You can decide after reading more other stuffs online.
by the way, I am not an agent, not a staff of Penang state government and not even staying in Penang today.
written on 29 March 2014 Next suggested article: Penang properties, the bright spot in uncertainty