Housing industry needs paradigm shift to break housing unaffordability cycle, says Sheda president

Wong delivering his speech during the Sheda Annual Dinner and Excellence Awards 2022 at BCCK last night (Aug 10, 2022). Photo credit: Sarawak Public Communications Unit (Ukas)

By Ashley Sim and Karen Bong

KUCHING, Aug 11: Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Sheda) president Augustine Wong opines that the housing industry requires a paradigm shift to break the vicious cycle of unaffordability.

Wong stated this yesterday during Sheda Annual Dinner and Excellence Awards 2022, which was held at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK) here.


“The high cost of living and high inflation rates have reduced the disposable income of many Sarawakians who want to buy a home.

“The high cost of living and financial constraints have prevented equity and parity from being achievable.

“Many interested buyers are also struggling with eligibility and qualification issues, whether for financing or in meeting prerequisites, for example, being unable to meet the minimum income threshold for Sri Pertiwi Affordable Housing,” he pointed out.

He opined that if eligibility obstacles are removed, many more Sarawakians will be encouraged and empowered to own homes.

In addition, Wong said that Sheda is humbled that Deputy Premier of Sarawak Dato Sri Dr Sim Kui Hian, who is also the Minister for Public Health, Housing, and Local Government, in collaboration with the Sarawak Land and Survey Department, have agreed to co-organise a series of seminars on “Strata Management and Maintenance in Sarawak” with Sheda.

“These seminars which will be held by our branches in Kuching, Sibu, Bintulu, and Miri, aim to explain salient points and guide stakeholders through the relevant ordinances and regulations which came into effect this year,” he disclosed.

Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg, announced yesterday at the dinner that the Sarawak government has set aside RM40 million per year to assist B40 homebuyers, which is equivalent to deposits for 4,000 units of housing.

He also pointed out that the Sarawak government provides B40 homebuyers with a RM10,000 down payment that they do not have to repay.

Among those present at the event were Dr Sim, Sheda Excellence Awards organising chairman Datuk Alex Ting, and Sheda Annual Dinner organising chairwoman Angie Kueh. — DayakDaily