KL home prices rising as Singapore’s depreciate
Kuala Lumpur property prices increased 5.1% between the end of 2015 and end of last year, according to the Knight Frank Global Residential Cities survey. The Malaysian capital ranked 79th among 150 cities in terms of property price appreciation, behind Yantai, China and Los Angeles but ahead of cities like Chicago and Madrid. Singapore crawled in at 140th place as its housing prices saw a 2.6% depreciation rate, while Jakarta appreciated 1% to place 115th. The prices of Malaysian residential properties in established areas are expected to continue to do well with moderate appreciation in prices, with more developments near new LRT and MRT stations. House prices globally across all the listed cities increased by 6.6 per cent in 2016, which is the highest rate in three years. (Malay Mail Online)

Iskandar waterfront seeks RM5bil to develop land
Iskandar Waterfront City Bhd, the world’s best performing small-cap stock this year, is planning to raise as much as RM5 billion via convertible bonds mainly to develop the real estate that it’s acquiring. It is also seeking a secondary listing in Hong Kong or China to attract a wider pool of investors. Shares of Iskandar Waterfront jumped more than 270% this year, making it the top performer on the S&P Global Small Cap Index of more than 8,500 companies globally. (The Edge Markets)

Launch of Setia “S.E.A.L” Campaign. (Photo by RAJA FAISAL HISHAN/The Star)

SP Setia to launch differential sum loan scheme
S P Setia Bhd is launching its Setia Express Advance Loan (SEAL), a differential sum loan scheme that offers interest rates as low as 5.5% per annum and up to 30% of the intended property purchase price. The scheme enables eligible purchasers of completed S P Setia properties to bridge the financing gap between purchase price and purchaser’s end financing loan amount. For further financial flexibility, SEAL also offers a 36-month repayment period and no penalty charge will be imposed on buyers who want to settle their loans earlier. (The Edge Markets)

Hua Yang ups stake in Magna Prima to 31%
Property developer Hua Yang Bhd is acquiring an additional 20.12% stake in Magna Prima Bhd for RM123.7 million, making its total stake 30.96% and becoming the single largest shareholder in the company. Magna Prima’s most prized asset is the 2.62 acres that used to house the Lai Meng School along Jalan Ampang, just a stone’s throw away from KLCC. Hua Yang CEO Ho Wen Yan said the group saw “significant opportunities and synergies” between the two companies and “strengthen the group’s presence in the Klang Valley”. Magna Prima’s landbank is predominantly located in Jalan Ampang, Petaling Jaya, Shah Alam and Mentakab. (The Star Online)

Ministry approves 30 strata maintenance projects worth RM56.9mil
A total of RM56.9 million had been approved up to March to finance the cost of 30 projects for the maintenance and upgrading of low and medium-cost stratified housing throughout the country. The cost is part of the RM300mil allocation in Budget 2017. The remaining RM243.1 million would be utilised to finance the maintenance and upgrading projects for more low and medium-cost housing especially PPR projects. (Malay Mail Online)

i-City boosts I-Bhd 1Q17 earnings
I-Bhd posted strong financial results for the first quarter of 2017, underpinned by the property development segment as demand for properties in i-City, Shah Alam remains strong. The property developer said its net profit for Q1’17 rose by 21% to RM18.59mil year-on-year, while revenue came in 27.8% higher from a year ago. The group’s performance is expected to jump once its prized assets such as the super regional shopping mall, the DoubleTree by Hilton i-City Hotel, Convention Centre and car parks are completed. (The Star Online)

WCT to open fourth shopping mall in November
WCT Holdings Bhd will open its fourth shopping mall, Paradigm Mall Johor Baru, in November this year, which is part of the construction group’s RM1.5 billion Paradigm Integrated Commercial Development there. 75% of the total retail space has been taken up, and the rest is expected to be filled by 2018. It has secured Parkson as an anchor tenant, and the group is targeting Johor-based retailers to fill up the space. A majority of retailers will be from the F&B segment. Besides the mall, the integrated development will also comprise a hotel and a serviced apartment block. (The Edge Markets)

Scale model of Paradigm Mall Johor Baru (Photo by Kid Chan)

Waste separation project in Section 11 to begin in May
A waste separaton and recycling project will be carried out starting May 8 in Section 11, Petaling Jaya. The project aims to get residents to separate their recyclable and non-recyclable waste. The recyclable waste will be placed in large, clear plastic bags and collected by a MBPJ contractor once a week on Mondays. As an incentive, those who regularly recycle their waste will be entitled to a rebate of up to RM500 for their assessment tax, as MBPJ officers would keep track of households that actively took part in the project. (The Star Online)