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En-Bloc Sales Unconstitutional, Violates Right To Property, Johor Sees Robust Property Demand From Foreigners, Driven By Singaporeans And, More

En-Bloc Sales Unconstitutional, Violates Right To Property, Johor Sees Robust Property Demand From Foreigners, Driven By Singaporeans And, More
En-Bloc Sales Unconstitutional, Violates Right To Property, Johor Sees Robust Property Demand From Foreigners, Driven By Singaporeans And, More

23rd January – 29th January

The National House Buyers Association (HBA) said the proposal to reduce the threshold for “en bloc sales” from 100% to 75% is a regressive measure as it contravenes the right to property under Article 13 of the Federal Constitution.

Meanwhile, Johor experiences robust demand for properties from foreigners, particularly Singaporeans, with the momentum expected to continue, said Dr Lee Nai Jia, Head of Real Estate Intelligence at DataSense.

 

1. En-bloc sales unconstitutional, violates right to property

The National House Buyers Association (HBA) said the proposal to reduce the threshold for “en bloc sales” from 100% to 75% is a regressive measure as it contravenes the right to property under Article 13 of the Federal Constitution.

Notably, HBA opposes any “consent threshold” and advocates for unanimous approval, reported The Star.

“We hope that the unconstitutional implications of such a law would not be overlooked,” said HBA Secretary-General Datuk Chang Kim Loong.

Seputeh MP Teresa Kok also expressed similar concern, underscoring the importance of considering the well-being of residents at such redevelopment projects.

She supported the objection raised by 57 residents’ associations and HBA against the proposed legislation on en bloc sales.

“Every development plan and project must receive approval and consent from the owners of every single property in a housing area or in flats and apartments,” said Kok.

 

2. Johor sees robust property demand from foreigners, driven by Singaporeans

Johor experiences robust demand for properties from foreigners, particularly Singaporeans, with the momentum expected to continue, said Dr Lee Nai Jia, Head of Real Estate Intelligence at DataSense.

Its Property Market Outlook Report 2024 showed that Iskandar Puteri registered the highest percentage of foreign demand, primarily driven by Singaporeans and its permanent residents, reported The Sun.

Factors boosting this demand include the Johor Bahru–Singapore Rapid Transit System (RTS) Link and the Special Economic Zone’s announcement. Lee also pointed to the historic high property prices in Singapore as another contributor to this demand.

He noted that Singaporeans were looking at homes priced below RM1 million.

“In terms of the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) impact, we suspect that potential buyers are still analysing and taking their time before decision-making. We observe that Malaysian citizens (living in Singapore) are going back and looking at properties,” said Lee in PropertyGuru’s property market outlook 2024 webinar and panel discussion.

The first group interested in buying Johor property are Singapore-based Malaysians, while the second group comprises potential buyers from Singapore attracted by economic developments.

 

3. KPKT to help developer of Hektar Gombak Residency secure financing

Housing and Local Government Ministry (KPKT) is committed to helping the developer of Hektar Gombak Residency, which has been classified as “sick”, secure financing to complete the affordable housing project.

However, the developer must comply with the financial institutions’ conditions for loan approval, said KPKT Deputy Minister Datuk Aiman Athirah Sabu.

She revealed that the project is delayed, with actual progress status remaining at 84.75%, due to financial issues, reported The Star citing Bernama.

The Private Housing and Abandoned Projects (TFST) Task Force has engaged the developer and facilitated the resolution of technical issues.

The minister explained that KPKT is ready to explore alternatives to help revive sick projects, particularly affordable housing, to ease the burden on homebuyers as well as ensure the affordable housing industry’s sustainability.

Located in Jalan Gombak, Setapak, the Hektar Gombak Residency is a mixed-development project comprising 2,400 housing units spread across five 46-storey apartment blocks.

 

4. Older walk-up flat residents fear high-rise living

The issue of deteriorating strata properties in Kuala Lumpur is put under spotlight as the government eyes to introduce the Urban Renewal Act.

Housing and Local Government Ministry Nga Kor Ming believes the proposed Act would help ensure systematic and efficient urban renewal efforts, reported The Star.

Two communities in Kuala Lumpur – in Sri Petaling and Salak South – underscore the contrasting experiences to impending redevelopment.

Residents of older walk-up flats in Sri Petaling has opposed a redevelopment proposal of their flats on Jalan 5/149B, amid concerns of a potential 350% hike in population density.

They added that the redevelopment would also lead to an 80% loss of land area.

“We are not interested in the view, larger living space or swimming pool if it means losing the open space,” said Mohd Mokhsin Junaaid, Chairman of Taman Sri Endah Management Corporation (Low Cost).

Meanwhile, residents at 1 Razak Mansion in Salak South were grateful for the redevelopment as it allowed them to enjoy modern, spacious residential units and enhanced amenities.

“The Razak Mansion redevelopment was an unequivocal success,” said Anthony Tan, Chairman of 1 Razak Mansion’s Management Corporation (MC).

 

5. Residential Tenancy Act completely unnecessary, says PEPS

Residential Tenancy Act Offers A Win-Win Formula To Tenants And Landlords
Residential Tenancy Act Offers A Win-Win Formula To Tenants And Landlords

The proposed Residential Tenancy Act (RTA) is considered unnecessary since the current system is already sufficient, said Subramaniam Arumugam, President of the Association of Valuers, Property Managers, Estate Agents and Property Consultants in the Private Sector Malaysia (PEPS).

Proposed by the Ministry of Housing and Local Government (KPKT), the RTA aims to provide specific protection for both landlords and tenants in Malaysia, reported the New Straits Times.

Countries such as United Kingdom, New Zealand, Canada and Australia have laws protecting both landlords and tenants and to reduce housing discrimination.

However, PEPS said the Act is completely unnecessary and impractical.

“Micromanaging real estate in this sector in this manner, particularly through a government bureaucracy, may not align with investor-friendly policies,” said Subramaniam.

He believes such measures may drive away investors, affecting Malaysia’s overall property investment climate.

 

6. Malaysian developers post strong performance in 2023

Concept of construction and design. 3d render of blueprints and
Concept of construction and design. 3d render of blueprints and

Affin Hwang Capital expects most Malaysian property developers to post a strong performance in 2023, following a robust performance in the fourth quarter of 2023.

It expects the robust momentum to continue in 2024, driven by positive property market sentiment and rapid infrastructure development, reported the New Straits Times.

Affin Hwang noted that the property sector benefited from various mega infrastructure projects as well as government initiatives aimed at spurring demand.

Ongoing infrastructure projects in Johor, include the Johor Bahru-Singapore RTS link, which is set to be completed by end-2026.

The firm revealed that all developers under its coverage are on track to achieve their 2023 sales target.

“Looking ahead, 2024 sales targets are expected to improve across the board as a number of developers indicate more new project launches in the south,” said Affin Hwang.

 

7. GEM Residences completes structural phase

GEM Residences, a transit-oriented development in Prai on Penang mainland, had achieved a significant milestone following the completion of its structural phase.

A joint project between Belleview Group and LTC Group under Regata Maju Sdn Bhd, the 978-unit GEM Residences as well as the 15-unit GEM Shoppes form part of the 8ha GEM masterplan project, reported The Star.

Set to be completed this year, the RM600 million GEM Residences comprises four 38-storey residential blocks. It will offer eight layout designs of one- to four-bedroom units, ranging from 441 sq ft to 1,445 sq ft.

Units are priced from RM400,000.

Featuring full condo facilities, the project caters to both local and foreign buyers and takes advantage of the RM400,000 minimum eligibility requirement for foreigners under Penang Home Ownership Campaign (HOC) 3.0.