Penang state government was commended by the Real Estate & Housing Developers’ Association (Rehda) Penang chairman Datuk Jerry Chan. The latest affordable guidelines has made it easier for developers to build affordable homes in the range of RM200,000-RM400,000 range for first-time house buyers. Under a new housing guidelines introduced last year, developers are allowed to build 2.8 times or a total of 122,000sq ft of built up area on one acre. The whole 122,000sq ft can be solely for affordable homes. As an example, if the unit built is 900sf, the developer can build up to 135 units. This can also be a combination of 750sf, 900sf and even 850sf. In other words, if the land is a total of 5 acres, the developers can build a total of 610,000q ft. If they are only building 850sf ones, they can build up to 717 units. No wonder these days, many of the newer affordable projects are all considered high density.
With this new rule, we have seen many new developments in Penang being focussed on affordable projects. In fact some of these are also in good locations and the developers are those whom people associate as high end developers! Yes, I do agree with Datuk Jerry that when all these are completed, it will help to relieve some pressure of pricing on the mid-range houses priced between RM500,000 – RM700,000. Little worry about losses. Most of these RM500,000 – RM700,000 homes were bought for less than half previously anyway.
He further said that since the home buyer cannot dispose the property within five years for more than what they pay, it would be unfair to them as the buyer would have spent considerable sum to renovate. For this, I do not agree. Five years remain very acceptable to me and unless you suddenly hit a lottery and intend to move home, there is just little reason to sell. Affordable project is meant to help the buyer to afford a good place to stay. It was never meant to enrich them in the first place. We will see if the state listens to this suggestion or not. Happy registering and buying an affordable unit.
written on 14 Mar 2015
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