7 Top High-Rise Developments In H1 2021: Why Did These Sell So Well?

·15-min read

The property sector is expected to recover thanks to phased openings, pent-up demand, and on-going vaccination drives. However, it will take some time before it gains any real momentum.

According to Sheldon Fernandez, Country Manager, PropertyGuru Malaysia, “While most individuals will opt to prioritise job and financial security in the current climate, savvy investors and financially secure home seekers will see this as an opportune moment to snap up prime property at below ordinary market value to maximise gains in the future.”

With that said, let’s look at high-rise properties that have remained popular with purchasers in the first half of 2021, despite worse COVID-19 conditions in 2021 compared to 2020!

Editor's notes:
1) This list is based on PropertyGuru DataSense's database, which gathers the number of sales transactions in terms of total number of units sold, and is arranged in descending order.
2) Calculations for the approximate gross annual income required and monthly repayment are based on the PropertyGuru Home Loan Calculator and PropertyGuru Home Loan Eligibility and Affordability Calculator respectively.

1) Le Pavilion, Puchong

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

Le Pavilion is a serviced apartment developed by IOI Properties, which has masterminded Puchong’s incredible transformation for more than three decades.

There are 669 units, with built-ups from 983 sq ft to 1,256 sq ft. The units come with a commercial title, with maintenance fee at RM0.35 psf, including the sinking fund.

The development also consists of Pavilion Xchange, with 101 units of retail lots/office suites that range from 1,195 sq ft to 1,350 sq ft.

Location wise, Le Pavilion is in Bandar Puteri Puchong, next to The Cube, and opposite IOI Rio City. The closest LRT station is at Taman Perindustrian Puchong station about 1.1km away.

A few reasons why this property is hot among purchasers

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Opposite IOI Rio City – RIO is the acronym for 'Rejuvenated, Innovative and Original'. This 72-acre mixed-use development will feature work spaces, retail offerings, hotel, and residences. Phase 1 comprises about seven acres of shop offices, office suites, and suite apartments on a 3-storey retail podium. Many believe that Le Pavilion will enjoy good appreciation when the RM6 billion IOI Rio City is completed.

  • Location and amenities – It is in a mature area, surrounded by all kinds of amenities. There are retail shops within the development itself. It is also just about 350m from Columbia Asia Hospital (4-minute walk) and 1.3km away from Damansara-Puchong Expressway (LDP).

  • Layout – Practical layout and sizes that suit individuals and small families.

  • Fittings – High quality bathroom finishing and sanitary fittings.

  • Developer – IOI Properties has transformed tin mines and oil palm plantations in Puchong into a dense and vibrant area. So, there’s deep trust in the project and developer.

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a 990 sq ft unit priced at RM748,000:

  • Margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM74,800

  • Loan amount: RM673,200

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM2,911

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM117,000* (RM9,750/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

If this unit is rented out at RM1,700, the gross rental yield is about 2.73% per annum. This means that the monthly repayment exceeds the rental income.

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2) Meru Courts, Klang

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

There isn't much info about this apartment online, but from what we gather, the built-ups are 847 sq ft, with three bedrooms and two bathrooms. Units also come with a free parking lot.

This apartment is accessible through Persiaran Hamzah Alang, Jalan Meru Tambahan, and Persiaran Setia Alam.

These roads are connected to Jalan Meru, and this gives residents access to neighbouring cities and business districts in Klang area and Selangor.

Some of the amenities in the area are eateries, fast food joints (KFC, McDonald’s), banks, futsal court, badminton academy, automotive repair shops, pharmacies, convenience stores (Speedmart, Econsave), Sri Athiswaran temple, Masjid As-Syarif, petrol stations (Shell, Petronas), and more.

Within a 6-minute drive, residents can get to Klang Sentral, Giant, and Lotus in Setia Alam, as well as Pekan Meru.

Possible reasons why Meru Courts is favoured

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Location – Meru Courts is surrounded by Top Glove, Kossan, Shopee hub, J&T Express Pekan Meru, and many other industrial lots. This translates to rental opportunities, targeting those who work with these companies.

  • Amenities – The apartment is about a mere seven minutes from the famed township of Setia Alam. This means that residents are also close to Setia City Mall, Setia Convention Centre, Sunsuria Forum, central park, and more choices when it comes to eating out, and conveniences.

  • Transport – Located just 6 minutes away, Klang Sentral is a modern transport terminal for the local and intercity bus and taxi services in Klang.

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a 847 sq ft unit priced at RM180,000:

  • Margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM18,000

  • Loan amount: RM162,000

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM701

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM28,500* (RM2,375/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

If this unit is rented out unfurnished at RM800, the gross rental yield is about 4.44% per annum. Together with the maintenance fee of RM100 per month, it would result in a breakeven.

3) Pangsapuri Nilai 3, Nilai

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

Pangsapuri Nilai 3 is located in Nilai, Negeri Sembilan. We looked at its location on Google Maps, and discovered that the flat is surrounded by several industrial lots and factories.

Some of them include Kawasan Perindustrian Nilai 7, Arab Malaysian Industrial Park, as well as steel, equipment, manufacturing, and aluminium factories, plus wholesale warehouses.

For daily conveniences, there are plenty of options along the various Jalan Nilai 3, opposite Fibertex Personal Care Sdn Bhd.

The closest park is Taman Teratai, while other amenities within a 17-minute drive include FM Wholesale Mart Nilai (550m), 7-Eleven (1.5km), Pasar Borong Nilai 3 (1.6km), Petronas (1.8km), Marrybrown (1.9km), SMK Nilai Impian (3.6km), SRK Nilai Impian (3.6km), Velodrom Nasional Malaysia (9.5km), and Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (9.8km).

Possible reasons Pangsapuri Nilai 3 is popular

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Location – The flat is surrounded by multiple factories, headquarters, and businesses. Just like Meru Courts, this translates to rental demand from workers and/or employers there.

  • Amenities – With an area that services many workers and taman in the area, such as Taman Dahlia, Taman Malor, Taman Bukit Inai, Laman Lavenda, and Laman Jasmin, there’s a good mix of service providers and eateries that cater to the population there. The closest mall, AEON Nilai, is 7.1km away (about a 11-minute drive).

  • Toll – The Nilai toll plaza is about 4.6km (about a 7-minute drive) from the flat, so that provides quick access to the North-South Expressway.

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a 753 sq ft unit priced at RM129,000:

  • Margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM12,900

  • Loan amount: RM116,100

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM502

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM20,200* (RM1,683/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

If this unit is rented out at RM600, the gross rental yield is about 5.58% per annum. This means that the monthly repayment exceeds the rental income.

4) Venice Hill, Cheras

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

Venice Hill is a freehold condominium located in Taman Kemacahaya, Batu 9 Cheras. It was developed by Li-Foong Group, and completed in 2000. The group’s other projects include Palazzo Azura, and Sri Impian Condominium.

The facilities at Venice Hill include gymnasium, park and garden, swimming pool, mini-mart, restaurant, sauna, car park, and security.

This project is accessible via Cheras-Kajang Highway (15km; about 19 minutes’ drive) and Jalan Hulu Langat. As for public transport, Venice Hill is about 2.9km (7 minutes’ drive) from Taman Suntex MRT station.

What makes Venice Hill a top choice among homebuyers

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Schools – This project is surrounded by schools such as Oxburgh International School, Cempaka Schools, SK Taman Puteri, Asia Metropolitan University, SJK Taman Segar, SJK Taman Bukit Teratai, and SMK Taman Seraya.

  • Shopping centres – Close to several shopping centres, namely Cheras Sentral Mall (7.5km; about 13 minutes’ drive), and Cheras LeisureMall (6.7km; about 13 minutes’ drive).

  • Price – The affordable prices could be the main motivator for purchasers. They could get larger units that are 1,500 sq ft and above, for about RM300,000. That translates to about RM200 psf for a home or investment that’s in a mature area, and about 16.3km (about 23 minutes’ drive) to Suria KLCC. Plus, it is a freehold property, with strata title.

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a 1,538 sq ft unit priced at RM320,000:

  • Margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM32,000

  • Loan amount: RM288,000

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM1,246

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM50,000* (RM4,167/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

If this unit is rented out fully furnished at RM1,200, the gross rental yield is about 4.5% per annum. This means that the monthly repayment exceeds the rental income slightly. Bear in mind the maintenance fees, which would amount to about RM261.50 for this unit.

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5) Angkasa Apartment, Kota Kinabalu

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

Angkasa Apartment is located in Darau Menggatal, and it was developed by Bina Puri Holdings Bhd. It’s a high-density project, with eight- to nine-storey apartment that hosts a total of 1,664 units.

Angkasa Apartment comes with the basic facilities, including lifts, swimming pool, recreation club, badminton courts, basketball court, security, children’s playground, mini football field, a multi-purpose hall, and a surau.

The apartment provides residents with easy accessibility to Kota Kinabalu city, which would take about five minutes, and about 16 minutes to Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park (KKIP), Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TARUC), Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS), and 1Borneo Hypermall.

Few possibilities why this property is popular

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Angkasa Apartment hits all the right notes in terms of accessibility, value for money, and high quality finishes. Residents also enjoy facilities which are almost on par with a condominium, even though the it was marketed as a medium-cost apartment. Upon its completion in 2011, it was priced between RM158,080 to RM192,300 per unit.

  • A quick online search also shows that there are many units at Apartment Angkasa listed on booking sites. So, there are a fair bit on investors here, which means that it is seen as having potential as an investment property. There are also several homestay options close to Angkasa Apartment, which hints that the area is a hotspot for tourists. There could also be demand from students at UMS and TARUC, which are 11.4km and 12.3km (14 minutes’ drive) away, respectively.

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a 871 sq ft unit priced at RM239,000:

  • LTV / margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM23,900

  • Loan amount: RM215,100

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM930

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM37,300* (RM3,108/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

If this unit is rented out at RM1,000, the gross rental yield is about 5.02% per annum. This means that the monthly repayment will exceed the rental income slightly, when you take into account the maintenance fee.

6) Residensi Kampung Paloh, Ipoh

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

Residensi Kampung Paloh (PR1MA @ Kampung Paloh) is a freehold apartment located at Kampung Paluh, Ipoh.

It covers over 2.58 acres, and comprises two blocks of 30-storey with total of 456 units. It features six unit types, with built-ups ranging from 784 sq ft to 1,236 sq ft, with two to four bedrooms and bathrooms. It was completed in 2018, and the monthly maintenance fee is about RM0.15 psf.

Residensi Kampung Paloh is located in the city centre, and enjoys easy connectivity to the North-South Expressway Interchange, to get all the way to Kuala Lumpur or Kuantan.

The Ipoh Railway Station serves as the main railway terminal of Perak, and sits about 2.3km (about 6 minutes’ drive) from the residence.

Slightly further is the Sultan Azlan Shah Airport, which is 5.8km (about 11 minutes’ drive), and Amanjaya Bus Terminal, which is about 11.6km away (about 25 minutes’ drive).

Other amenities close to Residensi Kampung Paloh include Cosmopoint College Ipoh (1.8km), Kinta Medical Centre (2.3km), Hospital Raja Permaisuri Bainun (3.3km), AEON BiG Ipoh (4.5km), Stadium Azlan Shah (5.9km), Taman Rekreasi Sultan Abdul Aziz (5.2km), Pantai Hospital Ipoh (6.7km).

These are all within a 12-minute drive. Meanwhile, Lost World of Tambun Theme Park is 11.2km away, about a 20-minute drive.

Reasons why Residensi Kampung Paloh is a hit

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Location – It’s located just a 5-minute drive from the tourist hotspot in Ipoh, where Funny Mountain Soya Beancurd, Ipoh Tuck Kee Restaurant, Ayam Garam Aun Kheng Lim, Guan Heong Biscuit Shop, Concubine Lane, and more, are located. Plus, there are ample schools, other restaurants, public transport, medical centres, and more, within a short drive.

  • PR1MA home – Given its location, it’s no wonder that this project has received much interest. According to a post in PR1MA’s Facebook page in December 2020, it starts from RM165,888 after discount. When it’s in a good location at an affordable price, it’s a no-brainer for most people!

  • Unit types – With various sizes (as listed below), the project caters to a wide range of buyers, from singles to small families.

    • Type A: 1,236 sq ft (4 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms)

    • Type B & B1: 995 sq ft (3 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms)

    • Type C & C1: 784 sq ft (2 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms)

    • Type D: 998 sq ft (3 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms)

    • Type E: 1,202 sq ft (4 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms)

    • Type F: 1,1,30 sq ft (3 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms)

Do note that under the agreement for PR1MA homes home agreement, owners are not allowed to dispose of or rent a PR1MA home until the expiry of the five-year moratorium period, upon the completion of the Sale and Purchase Agreement (SPA).

Anyone caught renting or selling the property before the moratorium ends will forfeit his/her rights, and the governing body can sell the house to another deserving party.

Social housing schemes such as PR1MA are meant to increase the country's homeownership level, and are not meant for profit-making activities.

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a unit priced at RM166,000:

  • LTV / margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM16,600

  • Loan amount: RM149,400

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM646

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM26,000* (RM2,167/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

7) Ken Rimba Condominium 1, Shah Alam

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia

Ken Rimba is green development in Shah Alam, developed by KEN Holdings Berhad. The development is certified by several green awards including BCA Green Mark Platinum, Gold Plus, Gold and Certified Awards, GBI Certified Award, GreenRE Platinum and Gold Awards, and FIABCI Malaysia Property Award 2014: Sustainable Development Category.

Ken Rimba Condominium 1 has three blocks comprising of 679 residential units; 637 typical units (1,076 sq ft to 1,183 sq ft), 16 penthouses (1,872 sq ft to 2,367 sq ft), and 26 2½-storey pool villas (2,615 sq ft).

Several reasons this condo is popular among homebuyers

condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
condominium, apartment, condo, apartments, apartment malaysia
  • Affordable luxury, green project – The project is built for comfortable and energy-efficient living. Some of the green features include north-south orientation for better ventilation and thermal comfort, adjustable louvered windows for better air flow, motion sensor to reduce electricity wastage at common areas, rainwater harvesting, energy-efficient light bulbs, water-efficient sanitary wares and fittings, recycle bins, low VOC, and heat reflective paint. For those looking for large units at affordable price points in a sustainable township, Ken Rimba Condominium 1 is one to consider.

  • Location: The condominium carries a Shah Alam address, but it is about 11km (a 10-minute drive) from AEON Bukit Raja, Klang. If you work around northern KL and Petaling Jaya, you can get there via KESAS, NKVE, LKSA, LATAR, and the Federal Highway. Alternatively, there’s a 700m covered walk-way to the Padang Jawa KTM station, and the Terminal 17 Shah Alam (main bus terminal for express buses in Shah Alam) is about 3.6km away (7-minute drive).

  • Educational institutions: Within a 15-minute drive, the ones within easy reach include SMJK (C) Taman Rashna, SK and SMK Seksyen 7, Universiti Selangor (UNISEL) Shah Alam, and Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), and Sri KDU International School Klang.

  • Other amenities: Close to Ken Rimba Condominium 1 include IRDKL Mall (1.4km), Giant hypermarket Shah Alam (3.6km; 11-minute drive), KPJ Klang Specialist Hospital (4.4km; 11-minute drive), i-City (4.5km; 10-minute drive), Centro Mall (6km; 14-minute drive), and SACC Mall (7.9km; 12-minute drive).

Now, let’s look at estimated loan figures for a partially furnished 1,119 sq ft unit priced at RM450,000:

  • LTV / margin of finance: 90%

  • Down payment (10%): RM45,000

  • Loan amount: RM405,000

  • Loan term: 30 years

  • Interest rate: 3.2%

  • Monthly repayment: RM1,751

  • Approximate required gross annual income: RM70,500* (RM5,875/month)

    *Assuming that you have no other monthly loan obligations

If this unit is rented out at RM1,700 (based on listings in September 2021), the gross rental yield is about 4.53% per annum. This means that the monthly repayment exceeds the rental income slightly, when the maintenance fee is added.

Back To Basics

Regardless of whether a property is for own-stay or investment, every purchaser needs to be clear of his/her objectives of purchasing.

For an own-stay, of course, you’d want the property to appreciate in value in time, while for investment, you’d want for there to be constant demand and positive rental yield.

If one is buying to flip (sell), then it has to make financial sense especially if the purchaser plans to sell it in a short few years (note: the Real Property Gains Tax, also known as RPGT).

It all goes back to the fundamentals – your objective(s), your risk appetite, location (x3!), price per sq ft, developer, accessibility, amenities, and upcoming projects or infrastructure surrounding your preferred project.

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