A Malaysian government-linked property firm is hoping to attract more foreigners to buy property in the country.
The firm, Malaysian Property Incorporated, has set up its first regional office and showroom in Singapore.
It aims to uplift Malaysia’s image as an investment destination and has chosen Singapore as a launch pad for its campaign.
The company plans to showcase the projects of Malaysian developers in its showroom every week.
“This is also a strategic location for us to showcase properties and commercial real estate in Malaysia. And there are a lot of travellers and tourists coming through, as well as very wealthy high net worth Singaporeans who may want to buy properties, and commercial real estate in Malaysia,” said Thong Yaw Hong, chairman of Malaysia Property Incorporated.
Currently, about 90 per cent of foreign buyers choose properties in Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Johor Bahru.
And as housing demand grows in tandem with Malaysia’s population growth, the firm said it is hoping to attract more foreign investments into other cities in the country.
Malaysia’s urban population will reach 70 per cent by 2020 and the firm said this could drive property yields and rents higher.
So far, a landed property located in the Klang Valley offers an average gross yield of 3.3 per cent.
And rental growth for the area is expected to grow at between 2 and 5 per cent every year within the next four years.
But the country’s changing regulations may pull some investors back.
For instance, starting from January this year, foreigners are only allowed to purchase Malaysian homes that cost RM500,000 and above.
Previously, it was RM250,000 or above.
“The average sale of a home in Johor Bahru for example, a single two-storey terraced house, is about S$250,000 to S$270,000, which is more than half of million in ringgit value. So, there are no issues on those platforms,” said Kumar Tharmalingam, CEO of Malaysia Property Incorporated.
And with cooling measures imposed by countries like Singapore and China, Malaysia may be an attractive alternative.
Malaysian Property Incorporated plans to open more regional offices going forward.
Source : Channel NewsAsia – 1 Oct 2010