Malaysian Real Estate Market Insights: Seismic Features and Growth Predictions

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Malaysian Real Estate Market Insights

Discover the evolving landscape of the Malaysian real estate market. Learn about seismic and earthquake-resistant architecture’s importance in high-rise buildings and explore projections for market expansion this year.

KUALA LUMPUR, 25 July 2023 – Given the recent increase in seismic activity and earthquakes in Peninsular Malaysia, experts in the field emphasize the significance of adding seismic and earthquake-resistant architecture when developing high-rise buildings over the past decade.

Despite the projected slow economic development, Deputy Finance Minister II Steven Sim is certain that the Malaysian real estate market will expand this year.

1. Building developers are urged to include seismic and earthquake-resistant features

Given the recent increase in seismic activity and earthquakes in Peninsular Malaysia, experts in the field emphasize the significance of adding seismic and earthquake-resistant architecture when developing high-rise buildings.

They recommended builders of new high-rise houses in highland destinations like Cameron Highlands, Bukit Tinggi, and Genting Highlands to take earthquake- and seismic-resistant designs into consideration.

These designs may be expensive, but according to the insiders, they could avert possible natural calamities.

Notably, Malaysia has previously been subjected to earthquake shocks, with Perak, Melaka, Selangor, and Johor experiencing earthquake-related vibrations. As a result, both new and existing structures should have earthquake-resistant designs.

When Tropicana Corporation Bhd included earthquake-resistant architecture in its high-rise project in Genting Highlands, it established a good example for other developers.

In addition to meeting QLASSIC quality standards, TwinPines Serviced Suites meets with international Eurocode seismic resistance standards.

According to Ixora Ang, Executive Director for Marketing, Sales, and Business Development at Tropicana, “The development as a whole has been designed for optimal safety, starting with a solid construction base and meticulous earthwork planning.”

2. Current year growth in Malaysia property market

Deputy Finance Minister II Steven Sim is certain that the Malaysian real estate sector would expand this year despite the weaker economic growth predictions.

The government’s accommodating policies, the programs in the updated 2023 Budget, and the projects outlined in the 12th Malaysia Plan will all promote its growth.

According to The Malaysian Reserve, Sim highlighted that transaction volume in the real estate market increased by 29.5% in 2022 and transaction value increased by 23.6%.

However, there is a shortage of supplies, especially in the mature area, despite the secondary market’s strong demand for landed homes.

They outlined how disconnected market supply and demand produced a difficult situation for potential buyers.

The demand of buyers for newly constructed homes with contemporary facilities and features, particularly in desirable locations, is a crucial driver driving Malaysia’s real estate market.

With this, experts recommended project planners to take into account market demands and current trends.

3. Increasing the availability of affordable housing motivates home ownership.

More options for home ownership are now available as a result of the government’s decision to broaden Kuala Lumpur’s program for affordable housing, especially for the younger population.

Homeownership is essential for maintaining stable neighborhoods and building a thriving community, according to Dr. Shazmin Shareena Ab Azis, Senior Lecturer at Real Estate, Faculty of Built Environment and Surveying, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, quoted in Bernama.

He attributed the low rate of homeownership to increasing property values, including home price in urban regions.

“Providing affordable housing is the solution for the B40, M40 groups, and young people to own a home,” he added, stressing that the government could take advantage of green technologies in implementing construction projects.

Notably, the application of green technology in development projects, such as planting gardens on buildings and producing green roofs, not only aids in water absorption and lowers global warming, but also improves aesthetic value.

The government’s intention to increase inexpensive housing was applauded by city resident Nur Fitri Aini Ismail, who also stressed the necessity of providing such developments with the most fundamental amenities while taking maintenance expenses into mind.

4. Projects near Ipoh limestone hills unsting Tmn Saikat residents 

At the base of limestone hills close to their houses, residents of Taman Saikat have voiced their opposition to the development of commercial and tourism activities.

According to The Star, new access roads, a café, and an eco-park are planned for the area, but they pointed out that the problems associated with the development of Qing Xin Ling Leisure and Cultural Village in 2015 have not yet been rectified.

According to Surindar Singh, the chairman of the Residents Association, Ipoh City Council has not had an interaction session with residents to update them on local developments since their 11 January meeting.

As things are, he claimed, “residents face daily traffic congestion with visitors to the cultural village parking haphazardly and blocking entrances,” adding that their kids could no longer play in front of their houses due to fast cars.

Additionally, the area being used to construct the access road as well as the location where the eco-park and café will be located are both green zone.

Meor Razak Meor Abdul Rahman, a field officer for Sahabat Alam Malaysia, said, “The contractor is unable to provide a permit to show that they have permission to construct the access road, which is probably under river reserve land.”

5. The difficulties of developing waqf land

The development of waqf (endowment) land is a government priority in order to assist the B40 or lower income groups, as well as the extreme poor and other vulnerable groups.

According to the New Straits Times, Senior Scholar KY Tan observed that, despite Malaysia having a sizable amount of waqf land, less than 15% of it has been developed due to various issues.

The development of waqf land is hampered by a number of problems. Ownership, legality, location, physical conditions, registration, unlawful occupation, database, and funding are the main contributing variables, according to Tan.

Additionally, the majority of people living in urban areas are in less favorable locations with little room for development.

As a matter of fact, portions of waqf land in Johor, Selangor, Terengganu, Perak, and Melaka have been turned into squatters’ colonies and commercial areas.

According to Tan, there are some regions where this is a severe problem due to a lack of control and enforcement.

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