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Renovation gets higher returns?

Recently, a friend said that she does not mind buying a house with little renovations because if she were to renovate it would probably be just the kitchen anyway. This brought me back to what I am looking for when I look for properties. If it is for my own stay, the renovation MUST meet what I want. For example, if the owner loves a dash of red here and there and the kitchen cabinets are all in pearly white colours, I must say that I would not be buying the property because the renovations are way too far from what I would want to do.
However, let’s assume I intend to buy to rent out. Then, I would prefer renovated units. In fact renting out a renovated unit would mean a much better premium compared than empty unit. For those who are thinking of renting, they would appreciate if there are renovations and also the furnitures and fittings but none of them would go to the extent of renting a place only when the renovations meet their expectations! That is why renting out fully furnished would be advisable too, my personal opinion.
In terms of buying a unit, if the renovations has been extensive, it would actually be cheaper to buy the property instead of carrying out the renovations myself thus losing both time and money. Please be reminded that if the typical property price in the area is RM500,000 and your renovation cost you RM100,000, it is HIGHLY UNLIKELY for you to be able to sell your property for RM600,000.
My friend has more or less shortlisted what she termed as a good buy. One unit with full renovations at a premium of RM20,000. This is a very reasonable premium to pay because for RM20,000 today, you cannot do much and typically even the renovation specialist would give you a sly smile if you were to tell him that your budget is just RM20,000 for renovation. Thus in my personal opinion, renovate as per what is needed and not so extensive that when you wanted to sell, you feel that the buyer is shortchanging you because he is unwilling to pay for YOUR RENOVATION.
written on 28 dec 2013, updated on 25 mar 2016.
Next suggested article: Penang property (condo) – Buyers’ market today

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0 Responses

  1. Agree if that property is for renting out or investment purpose, certain renovation is needed, but not a major one. i’ll still say kitchen reno is a must, n perhaps tat is enough.

  2. For your opinion, a new launch property bought it with intend to rent, for current moment no planning to stay, shall renovate the house? Or just do the major part like grill and door? I have a friend, bought a landed house launching price with 450k at Paya Terubong, no planning to stay because of inconvenience to work at Bayan Lepas. He asking me opinion, since he no planning to sell now, what i suggest is rent out to bear the house installment. The house still in empty now, since one year plus, never stay in.

    1. landed property very low rental yield. yes, better renovate becoz no one would rent empty landed house. grill, kitchen cabinets buy some electrical goods as well. rather than zero income, some rental is good.

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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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