Stamp Duty on unsold properties and the RPGT for all

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National House Buyers Association (HBA) says this in their website, “We are a voluntary, non-political, non-governmental, non-profit organisation manned by volunteers.”  Over the many years that I have been reading their comments, I think they are pretty serious in doing what they do. I may not agree with their views all the time but I think the government should engage them for their views too before any big announcements for the property market. Here’s their latest Comments HBA in NST here.  This was in response to the recent Budget 2019. My personal comments in brackets.

HBA disagrees with the RGPT for all sellers even if they are selling their properties only after 5 years. (I think many owners who were waiting for the 5-year period to pass would be caught by this announcement too. They have two choices; sell at a higher price to cover the 5% RPGT or stop selling but continuing to rent the property instead. First one depends on how attractive their property is to the market. Second one meant that the supply of properties for sale in the market could be stopped and perhaps the sale of the current unsold properties could move faster?)

HBA says that the stamp duty exemption which was given to unsold properties costing between RM300,000 to RM1 million is disappointing. It said, ”Extending stamp duty exemption for properties costing up to RM1 million is like extending subsidies to the wrong target group.” It added that Bank Negara Malaysia has stated that the median property price in Malaysia is already severely unaffordable and out of reach to the majority of the people. Thus, the proposal to exempt stamp duties (government revenue) will also enrich the already “rich segment” of society and developers having such stocks. ”These are finished but unsold stocks that have been classified as ‘overhang properties’, high end properties which are definitely not within the reach of the majority of middle class population.” Here’s that full article for reference from NST. 

For the duty exemption, I think what the government wants to do is to reduce the current unsold stock in the country which is the cause of concern for all the buyers currently. Everyone, especially first-time home buyers are scared every time someone forwards articles saying the super high number of unsold properties in the market. So, I think this move by the government in Budget 2019  is understandable. High unsold numbers are not healthy for the market anyway. They (government) just  need to also have measures to help the first-timers get their first home too. Our Finance Minister said that he will be engaging the HBA soon. Happy following.

written 4 nov 2018

Next suggested article:  Median property price in Malaysia is dropping. Good or bad? 

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