Govt may study having single authority for affordable housing

KUALA LUMPUR: The government may look into having a single authority to oversee the property market in the near future, said Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani.

He said every where people are talking about affordable house, but the definition of affordable housing from one developer to another, tends to differ greatly.

“All this happens because there’s no single authority to supervise. This is something that the government may look into in the near future to see how we can consolidate. Otherwise, the private sector will build their affordable house, while the government companies like 1Malaysia People’s’ Housing (PR1MA), Syarikat Perumahan Negara Bhd (SPNB), UDA Holdings Bhd, 1Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Project (PPA1M) (will build theirs). There are so many companies building affordable house, so much so that some of these houses are not built at the right location where people need a house, and you will have a mismatch,” he said at a plenary session, “Spotlight on Malaysia’s Fundamentals” at Invest Malaysia 2017 here yesterday.

He said more and more people are thinking about affordable house at the range of RM300,000 but according to Bank Negara Malaysia (BNM)’s survey, the real affordable house is in the region of RM200,000 and below, as that is the level where a first time buyer will be able to get 90% or 100% financing. Nevertheless the supply is not there and most of the supply in the market is RM300,000 and above.

“You talk to the the private sector, the affordable house is RM500,000 and you have an issue of oversupply of property. Today, if you look at all the high-end properties in Kuala Lumpur at night, only 10% of the total units is lighted (occupied). The rest in non-productive. You can’t even get tenants. This is unproductive investments of our money in our economy. It’s something that we need to address,” stressed Johari.

He also urged support for BNM’s ideas to relook on this matter and engage all financial institutions to see which segment should enjoy more flexibility and which segment should be tightened.