Sheda calls for reduction in land, compliance cost to make housing affordable

Sim Kiang Chiok

By Malcolm Lau

KUCHING, Jan 7: The state government should open up more land for housing development to reduce land and compliance cost so that it will be affordable for everyone.

According to Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers Association (Sheda) Kuching branch chairman the major cost of constructing houses could be divided into four elements: land cost, building cost, compliance cost and also bank interest.

According to Sim, the state government should build more roads and bridges to the new areas to increase more suitable land for housing development.

“In 2019, there was also a special scheme for private developers to build even higher density of houses under the Sri Pertiwi scheme where 12 units per acre for landed property and 50 units for strata titles building where the selling price is controlled at not more than RM290k with a built-up area of 900 square feet per unit,” Sim added.

He said that this type of house will increase in the market in 2020.

“The State Government under the Ministry of Housing also has various public housing developments across the state selling below RM100k per unit,” Sim pointed out.

“They have announced that 2,400 units will be built across Sarawak,” Sim added.

Sim later noted that more rules such as compliance cost and others will be added to the developer to control the cost of the building houses.

“Any new tax or increase of existing tax such as SST would increase the cost of construction. The strength of our ringgit also affects the cost of construction, especially for imported material and machinery,” Sim added.

He also said that the federal government should help house buyers by providing loans with easier terms and conditions and Bank Negara should allow commercial banks to provide loans based on future salary increments.

“Any lowering of interest rates and increasing the loan tenure would also help in the affordability of home purchase,” Sim said.

“In Malaysia, we have identified that the lower-income constituted 40 per cent of the population and its classified as B40, as the middle income is also 40 per cent of the population and classified as M40, and the top income segment is classified as T20,”

“Most private developers would build for M40 and T20 and those with bigger development of more than 10 acres land it is a requirement by our State govt for the developer to build 10  per cent  to 30 per cent of the development for affordable houses for the B40,” Sim said. —DayakDaily