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Property Investment 101: A buoyant property market is not necessary all rosy

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Property Investment 101: A buoyant property market is not necessary all rosy

Recently, I spoke in this event. it looks like I am singing but I am not. Haha.

It’s the “PropertY Rental and Leasing Conference 2023” by Comfori. They have lots of other CPD Points events too. Click here to view and sign up yeah. No need to mention my name. No extra discounts.

During my sharing, I also mentioned this statement: “Property Investment 101: “Renting may be a trend but it’s forever, not just 30 years.” I reminded everyone that in many advanced countries, the lack of property is the cause of poverty. The reason is simple, people never could stop paying rental and it keeps coming month after month. Unfortunately the salary does not come month after month once we are no longer capable to work full time.

Then, I saw this article.

“‘I’m so exhausted’: Tenants face hard choices as rents surge in Singapore” This is the title of an article about the state of property market where renting is concerned. Here’s that full article in Condominium rents increased 34.4 per cent year-on-year while Housing Board flat rents went up 28.5 per cent, according to flash figures from property portals and SRX. The URA Rental Index, published earlier this month, showed an overall increase of nearly 30 per cent last year – a 15-year high.

Do read here for the full article. It includes many more actual stories of people finiding it an uphill task just to pay the rent with their salaries because when we look at the numbers, there’s no way anyone could have such high salary increments.

It’s tough to buy that first property, I know

I viewed, compared and viewed more units for 6 months before buying my first home which is just a small apartment of 730 sq ft. I was also worried whether I could pay for the monthly mortgage. However, I went ahead because I know that as hard as it was, I would need to pay just 30 years or so. Plus the real fact is, I would have spent any extra money into something I want if I did not need to pay this mortgage.

Most of the payment goes into interest in the early years, I know

As bad as the first 8-9 years where most of the payment goes to the interest versus to the principal, I know that if I rent, then 100% of that goes to the homeowner and none would go into the principal. I also know that the homeowner has his / her own expenses and cannot just allow me to stay for free even after I have paid them rental for 30 years.

Salary is low. Does it happen only today? Honestly?

Someone informed me that our minimum salary is just RM1,500. How to survive if one is earning RM1,500 today? I still remember this property developer who told me that he was only earning 50 sen per day when he was working as a helper in a restaurant. He did not spend a single cent of that earnings as the restaurant provided food too. Did we save? Did we also try to improve what we know so that we could do more than what we could today and thereby earning higher pay?

I also want to tell everyone that these days, with the right experience and skills, the salary we could get is very high because the company could choose to hire in Malaysia versus to hire in some high cost countries. They could easily pay a senior manager here half of what they pay in their home country and that senior manager here in Malaysia would still be super happy because the salary is benchmarked internationally versus just against the local companies here. Back then… there were no such opportunities.

Happy deciding and doing the right thing.

P/s: I did not say anything about buoyant market’s impact to the homeowners yeah. It’s positive usually.

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Next suggested article: When rates rise, property transactions drop, right?

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Charles Tan The Founder The Writer Kopiandproperty
Charles Tan

Charles is Founder of He writes from his investment experience for the the past 20 years in investments including property, stock, unit trust and more as well as readings and conversations with many property gurus in the industry. is an independent property blog which is not affiliated to any media company, property developer or even real estate agencies.


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