I purchased my first property from the secondary property market in 2002. This was followed by my second property from the primary market; developer in 2007. Then, my third property was a secondary property in Kelana Jaya and my fourth was a new unit from a developer in Kota Kinabalu. Just from the first 4 purchases, clearly, I have no particular preference for the secondary property market or buying new. In my personal opinion, secondary property market is not a secondary choice. Please let me share why.
#1 Essence of time. Why wait? If we need a place to stay sooner than later, then the secondary property market fits the bill. You view it, you like it, you pay the deposit for it and well, within a couple of months, you may move into the unit from the secondary property market which is now your primary home sweet home.
#2 Attractive Price Deciding which property to buy is emotional by the way. We see a condo from the secondary property market and we felt that the condo has started to show its age. The paint on the building no longer shining brightly under the sun. The tiles within the condo has shown some wear and tear and so on. This is why most of the time, we are only willing to pay lower for a similar condo versus a totally new condo which was shown impressively in the sales gallery.
#3 Choices are plenty There are definitely more choices in the secondary property market versus new launches. In fact we could even choose by the number of years that the property has been completed. We could choose the ones where we could see a lot more families are staying. We could even choose the one where every time we were there, there were no traffic jams. All these may not be apparent for new properties, yet.
#4 What you see is what you get No nasty surprises. Remember, there’s the chance that when you receive the key to your newly completed home, you may need many hours to list down the defects which seems to have no ends. When it comes to secondary property market, what you see is what you get. What you buy, is what you will get. The neighbour beside you, that’s also what you will get too. Okay, problems happening after that is no longer the responsibility of the ex-owner yeah once you become the new owner.
#5 Renovation starting earlier is possible too I did not say this is totally possible but in many cases, when it comes to secondary properties, it is possible to negotiate with the owner for access to the property earlier so that your renovation planning can start sooner. Yes, as an owner, I have granted this flexibility before as long as all the documentations are already completed and I have confidence with the buyer. No right or wrong, some owner may just prefer to complete everything before giving you the keys.
#6 Savings from renovations too. (if you could accept them) It’s a plus if the unit from the secondary property market has renovations which meets your expectations. This saves you a lot of money by the way. For example, 15 feet of kitchen cabinets (top and bottom) would easily set you back RM8,000 – 10,000. (depending on the type and quality). If the tiles come in your favourite colour, that’s another 5-figure saving depending on the size of your unit. Okay, perhaps that sofa set can be changed lah… Haha.
#7 Rent it out quickly If the purpose of the purchase is for investment, for rental returns for example, then the secondary property market provides that almost immediate start right after getting the keys. Even more importantly, you have an idea about the rental in advance since the information could now be easily available from the many units being listed for rental currently. This is not the same as new properties because the developer may need some months to rectify the defects.
By the way, secondary property market accounts for 80% of all property transactions yeah. An earlier article in nst.com.my here.
Remember yeah, renting a place may be cheaper but rental does not stop just because your income has stopped. Besides, renting a place will make the owner richer. Buying a place would make you richer in the long term too.
The most important thing is that you love what you buy. To love what you buy, you need to get to know what you buy. To get to know what you buy, it is important to view, view and view before buying. Property investment starts from the second property onwards. Buy your first one, enjoy it and perhaps upgrade in the near future. For those with kids, it is even more important to hedge for their future with property investments. Whether it’s secondary or new ones, I wish you happy buying.
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