KL’s luxury condominium market? An update

My personal definition of a luxury condominium is one which is RM1 million or above. Yes, I personally do not think there are many Malaysians who can afford RM900 per sq ft. I do have friends who owns some of these units and actually none are desperately trying to sell the units, not yet anyway. One who owns such an older unit less than 2km away from KLCC has had to reduce her rental by 40 percent from the usual rate just 2 years ago. She said competition from newer units are too strong. For the same price, who would take an older unit? Full article in thestar.com.my here. Well, below is an update from many prominent property people.

According to Rahim & Co executive chairman Tan Sri Abdul Rahim Abdul Rahman, “At the moment, the market is tough but it’s a cycle.’ (He did not mention where are we in the cycle but then again, if we intend to invest, why worry too much)

Property consultant DTZ Nawawi Tie Leung managing director Eddy Wong says,“Some borrowers have trouble servicing their loans. But the situation isn’t dire, to the point that there have been fire sales. Nothing of serious concern.” (I also do not see a huge number of distressed sellers yet. Adjustments however has happened, just compare the prices end 2013 and today and there’re definitely differences)

Historically, Abdul Rahim shared the following:

KLCC became a prime location for investors and buyers 10 years ago for high-end condominium. As the high-end world class homes became sought after, more developers started building similar type of homes. The trend carried on due to demand from expatriates and a bubble started building leading to an oversupply. Today the economy has been affected by the fall in oil prices and demand from expatriates for these luxury homes is on a downtrend. It will take at least two or three years to fully recover.

SK Brothers general manager Chan Ai Cheng says “It has been a challenging year for the property market at all levels. Market confidence (resulting in a lot of wait and see and not to over commit in uncertain times) contributes to most of it, topped with the cooling measures that targets high-end properties. (I agree… Sentiment is negative and it is not solely due to demand. Today, even if I have the money but I have a home to stay, why bother to do too much since everyone is saying worst is yet to come?)

Axis REIT Managers Bhd head of investments and Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents immediate past president Siva Shanker said, “We expect this segment to consolidate. Sales above RM1mil will slow; people don’t know when the market will recover. The market below RM500,000 is hot right now.” (Based on my personal knowledge, I do not think the market below RM500,000 is hot right now. Moving perhaps. People with money are waiting while first timers are worried with all the negative news daily)

DTZ’s Eddy Wong said this about the luxury market. “It will move sideways. I don’t see the market crashing. Some places will see volumes decreasing, others maybe even increasing slightly. It will be a mixed bag.” (I personally think crashing is unlikely as the slowdown started since 2014 or even earlier. If the market would crash, it should happen earlier. Of course, if the world collapses, then Malaysia will be affected too)

For those who believe in property investment as a long-term thingy, keep looking for the right one at the right price. I am still hopeful that the world may just grow a little faster next year, once Brexit and the new President starts to show a more positive sign. British PM is reported to be submitting the application for Brexit in March 2017. We will see how the other members respond by then. Perhaps they would not want to make it hard for both sides. Keep following and cheers.

written on 22 Nov 2016

Next suggested article:   Developers pessimistic but luxury home prices still up

 

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