‘Limburg’ may remain standing despite possible land sale
“Limburg”, the 1916-built mansion located at No 52, Jalan Larut in George Town, Penang may remain standing as it is, even if a new owner takes over the site and only the land surrounding it will be developed. The 103-year-old mansion is one of the historic buildings in Penang that was converted into a fast food restaurant (KFC) in 1987. The owner is planning to put the 1.3-acre land with the architectural icon up for sale and hence, will no longer be renting the space out to the fast food chain. The KFC outlet, one of the oldest in Malaysia, closed its doors on 16 March 2019 after 32 years of operation. The land has a plot ratio of 1:4-5 and could potentially generate between RM200 million and RM300 million in GDV. It is believed that the new owner could do what YTL did when it took over The Majestic Malacca which is preserving the structure and building around it. (NST Online)

Unfair housing loan terms to be revised by end 2019
Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) has found that some terms and conditions in housing loans and financing contracts are disproportionately skewed in favour of banking institutions, to the detriment of consumers. “These included terms and conditions that provide absolute exclusions or limitations of a banking institution’s liability and obligations, and place undue reliance on signed declarations to assert that financial consumers have read and understood a contract,” BNM noted in its 2018 Financial stability and Payments Systems report. Following the bank’s thematic review on the matter last year, banking institutions are now required to revise these unfair terms and conditions, as well as improve clarity through the use of plain language, for both new and existing housing loan and financing contracts, by end 2019. (The Edge)

Related article: 10 Things to Check Before Signing the Housing Loan

Suria KLCC to redevelop Parkson’s lot for RM50m
Suria KLCC Sdn Bhd is adding over 50 mixed retailers at its former anchor tenant Parkson’s spot under a RM50 million redevelopment project to generate higher rental yields and uplift the vibrancy of the shopping mall. CEO and ED Andrew Brien said the first phase of the project is expected to finish by the fourth quarter of this year (4Q19), and a full completion is set in 2Q20. Brien said the company is subdividing the space to the size of less than 10,000 sq ft for each specialty store, or equal to not more than the size of four tennis courts combined. A typical anchor lot has a size of more than 100,000 sq ft and a mini-major is above 10,000 sq ft. The Signatures Food Court on the second floor will be entirely redeveloped and extended into the place vacated by Parkson. Parkson Malaysia, which is owned by Parkson Holdings Bhd, had been one of the anchor tenants for 20 years since the mall opened in May 1998. (The Malaysian Reserve)

MIEA to lodge police reports against nine proptech firms
The Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents (MIEA) has identified nine proptech start-ups that operate real estate practices illegally. It is ready to lodge police reports on whoever is infringing the law and meddling with the practice. MIEA expressed concerns over proptech start-ups claiming to provide real estate technology solution but have circumvented the law by carrying out real estate practice illegally. The real estate agency practice in Malaysia is governed by Act 242 whereby real estate agents are registered and real estate negotiators are certified by the Board of Valuers, Appraisers, Estate Agents & Property Managers (BOVEAP). Real estate transactions in the country can only be handled by real estate agents, real estate negotiators and property owners thus the real estate practices undertaken by such proptech start-ups are illegal, according to Section 22c of the Act. (The Sun Daily)

BNM: Oversupply of commercial property will worsen
Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM) saw an uptick in commercial activity in the commercial property sector in 2018, but the oversupply of retail and office space will only serve to exacerbate the existing oversupply of such properties. According to its latest report, office space and shopping complexes (OSSC) saw higher transaction volumes and values, particularly with regards to properties over RM500,000, while industrial properties priced RM1 million and above saw growth. The large incoming supply of new and planned office space in the Klang Valley and retail space nationwide is set to worsen the existing oversupply in the commercial market. Klang Valley average rental rates remain depressed and elevated risks of property prices adjusting sharply lower are present. (The Edge)