Personally, I agree to the additional 3% levy. The additional levy would allow the state government to have additional income and may use the surplus for affordable properties in Penang. It is not an easy task to build affordable properties. Land prices has shot up tremendously for many years and in the word of Dato Jerry Chan, chairman of REHDA Penang, ‘land prices has been moving very fast, thus the prices of Penang properties has to grow because the land cost has gone up.’
Why is affordable properties important in Penang? Without more affordable properties, the prices of the currently available ones would increase even more due to the shortage of supply. Shortage of supply in locations that the buyers want. That is why prices per sf in the Tanjung Tokong area has been higher than prices in Gertak Sanggul or even Balik Pulau. Location is one main consideration.
Thus, where can these affordable properties be built? I understand that mainland Penang is where bulk of these affordable properties is to be built. Again, I like this idea, especially if the development is a integrated one. It’s not just the actual units. It’s also the overall. Is it easily accessible? Are there public parks, primary schools, secondary schools, colleges, jobs nearby, a cosy family departmental stores within the development etc. If these are planned carefully, Penang’s affordable housing plans will bring huge benefits both for the poor and middle class as well as for the long term health of the property market in Penang.
Only one request, please speed up the affordable housing process since RM500 Million has been made available to build it. This has been announced for quite some time.