Malaysia a hotspot for Chinese buyers eyeing properties up to RM3mil
Malaysia is popular among China’s house buyers who are looking for properties at an ideal price range of between RM1.2 million and RM3 million per unit, international property portal has said. It noted that China’s buyers primarily wanted Malaysian properties for investment (65.4%), own use (58.5%), education (9.9%) and emigration (3.7%) with some of these motivations overlapping. They were keen on properties in Kuala Lumpur, Melaka, Johor Baru, Penang, Langkawi in Kedah and Kota Kinabalu and Semporna in Sabah. It also found that the Chinese buyers hoped they could get more options in financing Malaysian properties, with an ideal investment range between RM1.2 million and RM3 million with a return on investment rate of above 7% for locations in Kuala Lumpur, Johor Baru and Melaka. (Malay Mail Online)

Minister calls for timely, accurate property data
Deputy Finance Minister II Datuk Lee Chee Leong has called on property data providers to supply data in a timely and accurate manner, in order for industry stakeholders to make informed development decisions. This follows the residential overhang and commercial space vacancy as reported by JPPH in its Property Market Report 1H2017. Currently, JPPH’s Property Market Report, which is published annually, is only released four months after the conclusion of the year, which means that property data for the entire 2017 will only be available in April 2018. JPPH said that the data providers – developers, government agencies, property agents, hoteliers and property managers – had to submit their data in a timely manner for JPPH to release it. (The Sun Daily)

(Photo by Saddam Yusoff)

Malaysian firms can bid for MRT Line 3
MRT Corp CEO Datuk Seri Shahril Mokhtar said that tenders for the third Klang Valley MRT (KVMRT) line is open to both local and foreign firms. Local civil infrastructure companies can bid for the turnkey contract by forming a consortium or joint ventures (JV) with foreign players who have the technical expertise and know how. The turnkey financing model is aimed at attracting foreign companies who may provide better financing options for MRT3. The development of the MRT Line 1 and MRT Line 2 were based on the PDP (project delivery partner) model to ensure the on-time delivery of the projects. (NST Online)

Property retail sales improved 11.5% in Q2
Consumer sentiment has turned around since GST was introduced in 2015, with retail sales rising 11.5% y-o-y in 2Q2017, said real estate and management fir JLL Property. The sentiment was expected to be sustained with retail operators allotting over 50% of net lettable area in new shopping malls to leisure and experiential elements such as food and beverage, to draw higher foot traffic. On residential properties in prime areas, the rental rate is expected to be pressured by improving mobility due to public transportation options such as the MRT and LRT. On prime office spaces, Kuala Lumpur would continue to exceed demand, a trend that has been continuous since 2008. (Malay Mail Online)

Recommend, Mah Sing collaborate for designer homes
On-demand home improvement services platform is collaborating with Mah Sing Group to offer fully-furnished designer home packages for the developer’s Caspia in M Residence 2 development in Rawang. Caspia comprises two-storey garden homes located within M Residence 2, Mah Sing’s second development project in Rawang. Instead of purchasing an empty unit, buyers can opt for a unit that comes with a customised interior design package at a special introductory price. There are four options – Scandinavian, Dark Nordic, Modern Contemporary and Minimalist – and buyers can choose their preferred colours, materials and textures design. Recommend guarantees that renovation works will be completed eight weeks after unit owners receive the key to their unit. (Digital News Asia)

M-Residence 2: Caspia by Mah Sing

40% more unsold completed homes in 1H2017
Unsold completed residential units rose by 40% to 20,807 in the first half of the year, compared with the same period last year, said Deputy Finance Minister Lee Chee Leong. The units are worth about RM12.26 billion, with condominiums and apartments costing more than RM500,000 dominating the overhang homes in Malaysia. The location and pricing of the units contributed to the overhang, as the prices of affordable homes varied from state to state. Local authorities and property developers were advised to carry out research before making decisions for new developments. (The Malaysian Insight)

Consultants: Redevelop unsold properties
Unsold properties can be redeveloped or repurposed to match market demand, according to property consultants. This will also help reduce the glut in the market. “Excess office spaces can be repurposed as budget hotels while retail spaces can be repurposed as destination malls that focus on digital services, food and beverages and entertainment,” said Knight Frank Malaysia managing director Sarkunan Subramaniam. Estimated incoming supply of retail space will reach 25 million sq ft in three years, up from 57.4 million sq ft currently in Malaysia. (The Star Online)

Arc @ Cyberjaya owners win suit against developer
The Shah Alam High Court has ruled in favour of a class-action lawsuit representing 137 unit owners of serviced apartment project The Arc @ Cyberjaya seeking the return of outstanding rentals against its developer Maju Puncakbumi Sdn Bhd. The court awarded the owners RM3.97 million being the outstanding rentals up till May 2017. The Arc @ Cyberjaya is a RM700 million freehold development, which was launched in 2011, comprising four blocks of serviced apartments and four blocks of office towers. (The Sun Daily)

Trive Property’s RM70mil PPR contract in Alor Setar terminated
Trive Property Group Bhd announced that a contract awarded to the group in 2014 under the People’s Housing Programme (PPR) has been mutually terminated. No reason for the termination of the RM70 million contract was given. The initial contract was for project management works in relation to the design and construction of 500 apartment units in Kampung Kilat, Alor Setar. (The Edge Markets)

Logo from RHB Banking Group

RHB launches feeder fund for global property investments
RHB Investment Bank Bhd has unveiled its latest fund, the RHB Global Real Estate Equity Fund, to provide Malaysians with long-term total returns from their investments in global property stocks. The fund is a feeder fund that will invest at least 95% of its net asset value (NAV) into collaborating partner HSBC Global Investment Funds (GIF) Real Estate Equity, which will in turn invest in a portfolio of equities related to the real estate industry in developed markets. Additionally, 2% to 5% of the NAV in RHB’s latest fund will be invested in liquid assets, which includes money market instruments and placements of cash. During the initial offer period from Nov 13 to Dec 3, the initial issue price is RM1 per unit, at a minimum initial investment of RM1,000. (The Edge Markets)

Malaysia unemployment rate to stay at 3.3%-3.4%
According to AmBank Group Research, Malaysia’s September unemployment rate stayed at 3.4% for the second consecutive month while the labour force participation rate improved slightly to 67.9%. Those outside the labour force i.e. housewives, students, retirees, disabled persons and persons not looking for a job rose 0.5% year-on-year. It forecast the unemployment rate to stay around 3.3% – 3.4% by end-2017 from 3.5% in 2016. (The Edge Markets)