Press Release: Top 3 preferences when buying a property

Press Release by PropertyGuru:  Malaysians’ Top Property Considerations for 2017

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KUALA LUMPUR, MARCH 20 2017 – As Malaysians continue to adjust to market realities and make a gradual return to the property market, PropertyGuru, the leading online property group in Malaysia and South East Asia, revealed that consumer’s top considerations when buying property have changed in the last six months.

Malaysians top three preferences are Location, Safety / Security, Size in that specific order. This resembles a marked difference compared to 2016 when location, PSF and future developments in the area were deemed top considerations when making a property purchase decision.

Other important factors were availability of infrastructure and amenities, developer’s reputation and future developments in the area – ranked 4th, 5th and 6th respectively. Surprisingly, rental yield, only reached 13th on the list – a potential indicator of more owner-occupiers in the market than investors.

According to PropertyGuru Malaysia Country Manager, Sheldon Fernandez, the changing factors are a reflection of the current mind-set and expectations of property buyers.

“The results provide insight into the minds of potential property buyers in 2017. As people look to new areas outside of the city centre that meets their budget, location remains a priority but with safety and security growing in importance. Living further away, people generally want the benefit of space. Hence, the emergence of these three factors at the top,” shared Fernandez.

“But importantly, foremost on the minds of Malaysians is to secure a property; to get a roof over their heads whereas before they would probably also be thinking of potential rental yields and capital appreciation. There is certainly a mind-set shift in 2017,”added Fernandez.

He also added that the survey results are consistent with the increased number of searches PropertyGuru has seen over the past six months for properties on the outskirts of Selangor and the city centre.

 

Emerging Property Hotspots in Suburban Selangor

According to the PropertyGuru Consumer Sentiment Survey, the outskirts of Selangor is gaining traction with 29% of potential homeowners (25% in 2016) now regarding the location as their preferred choice. This indicates the emergence of new property hotspots in suburban areas of Selangor – between 20-40km from the city centre such as Rawang, Sungai Buloh, Semenyih, Ulu Kelang, Ampang and others.

Not surprisingly, high-rise strata homes consisting of both apartments and condominiums are the top choice followed by landed terrace homes. Demand for bungalows and semi-Ds however continue to dip.

 

Average Property Budget in 2017

With regards to budget, close to 40% of respondents intending to buy within the next six months indicated they would spend between RM300,001-RM500,000 in 2017 to buy a property. Higher priced properties of RM700,001 to more than RM900,000 are likely to see fewer buyers with only 18% of respondents looking at these niche segments.

“It indicates the sweet spot of what the majority of Malaysians are willing to fork out for a home. This is consistent with market trends, where properties priced RM300,000-RM500,000 have done well. Properties priced between RM500,000-RM700,000 will also see some movement. But 2017 is unlikely to see a recovery in the higher-end market. Properties closer to the RM1 million mark will generally be hard to sell though there will always be exceptions,” said Fernandez.

 

Overseas Property Demand Declines

On a separate note, the survey also showed a continued drop in appetite among Malaysians to acquire overseas properties despite Brexit and other global developments. Australia remains the top choice for overseas properties with high rise homes being the top choice, followed by landed houses. Among the top reasons cited for overseas property buying were for retirement (43%), better environment / surroundings (42%), capital appreciation (38%), rental yield (37%), suits migration plans (36%) and children’s education (36%).

The PropertyGuru Consumer Sentiment Survey measures property sentiment and expectations amongst Malaysians with regards to the local property market. It polled 1013 respondents online. Similar surveys are carried out concurrently in Singapore, Thailand and Indonesia. The goal of the Survey is to help consumers gain an insight into the local property market to make better business and buying decisions. The survey was conducted in collaboration with Intuit Research Consultants, a well-respected international research agency.

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