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What is a coffin home? 200,000 people staying in coffin homes.

What is a coffin home? Are there homes which are really that small? 21.5 sq ft is the size of such a home. If you like an estimation of the size, just walk 4 steps to the front, then turn left or right and walk 5 steps. That’s roughly the size of 21.5 sq ft. A small sized single bed is roughly 3 ft x 6 ft = 18 sq ft. Yeah, imagine everything you have must be kept within a space like a single bed and every night, you will be sleeping in that single bed which will have all your possessions too.

what is a coffin home
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on

Article in Article quoted someone surnamed Wong staying in a 21.5 sq ft living space who said he spends his days in the park playing mahjong with friends and will only be returning at night to sleep. However, with the return reported death of the first patient from coronavirus, he has since been staying indoors. He said, “I don’t go out anymore, there are no more gatherings.”

“As soon as I finish my tea and grocery shopping, I come home and become a recluse and just watch TV. I can’t do anything.”

Hong Kong has one of the world’s highest inequality rates, with more than a million of its population of nearly 7.4 million living below the poverty line. More than 200,000 people are housed in subdivided flats, commonly referred to as “coffin homes” because they are so small, government data show. Please do read the full report here: Article in

Homes are that connection to inequality rates

Imagine paying rental for 200 years… Would you? Well, this may be happening in some countries where generations after generations, poor families continue to pay rental and often the rental is paid to someone far richer who continue to get richer while these poor families continue to work very hard but because a huge part of their income goes to a never ending rental, they lose so much of their earnings every month, year after year and yes, it’s possible to reach 200 years or more.

Government intervention needed

Nope, when I said government intervention needed, this is NOT asking developers to keep building some RM300,000 homes in the middle of nowhere or at places where people just would not buy and more. What I meant is that the poorest must get a place to stay at a rate so low that they could still afford to save more of their pay and could then start saving for a place of their own in the future, hopefully also built under supervision of the government. To do this well, consult lah good people. Maybe a property blogger who is not from the developer, not a real estate agent and not from the banks? Haha.

This was the earlier article about renting vs buying. Renting is better than buying? Which is going up faster in Malaysia? Just remember that the debate about buying or renting a home ceases to be a matter of concern if we could earn far more than what is needed to live comfortably. However, for most of us, better understand that we are living longer than the 60s, 70s and even 80s. Today we may just be living to the 80s… That’s a huge issue because we retire in the 50s… Let’s not have this kind of situation in Malaysia yeah.

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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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