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By Adrian Lim
KUCHING, June 3: Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Sheda) is urging homebuyers to take advantage of the Home Ownership Campaign (HOC) which has been recently extended to Dec 31 to buy houses.
Its president Augustine Wong believed that now is the best time to buy properties as there might be another round of construction cost increase which could push property developers to raise their prices.
“Anecdotally, there has been an increase of about 30 per cent in construction costs since March 2020.
“Compounding it with the disruptive supply chain and its logistics related issues, more escalation is anticipated.
“All these increased prices would ultimately result in higher property prices.
“The increment of construction building material costs such as steel, cement, sand, and bitumen have been on the rising scale, ranging between 20 per cent to 40 per cent, or higher as compared with that before the movement control order (MCO).
“This has a direct impact on the building cost of the houses.
“On the same note, the transport and logistic costs have also increased along the lines, which further contributed to the escalation of cost,” he said in a press statement.
Wong added the cost of adhering to Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOP) like swab test for the construction workers and operating with a limited workforce are contributing to the higher operational cost.
He noted acute shortage of construction workers meant another round of labour price escalation as workers were being pinched by other industries when housing contractors halted its construction at sites.
Hence, Wong urged home buyers to seize the opportunity to buy houses now by taking advantage of the HOC as the campaign offers purchasers plenty of savings from stamp duties.
At the same time, he said Sheda supported the federal government’s decision to extend HOC until year end which ended on May 31. — DayakDaily