REHDA views positively most goverment initiatives on property sector

Source: 123rf

4 November, KUALA LUMPUR – Property industry players view positively the government’s move to boost their sector, said the Real Estate and Housing Developers Association (REHDA).

Commenting on the 2019 Budget, President Datuk Ir Soam Heng Choon said the National Home Ownership Campaign was a positive move in managing unsold residential properties.

“Coupled with the stamp duty exemption on transfer instruments for the purchase of first houses priced between RM300,001 and RM1 million, it is indeed a step in the right direction towards encouraging people to own properties, which is an effective wealth-creating instrument,” he said in a statement.

Soam said the stamp duty waiver for houses priced up to RM500,000, together with RM1 billion Fund for Affordable Homes to be established under Bank Negara Malaysia to assist first-time homebuyers with household income of less than RM2,300 (to buy a property priced up to RM150,000 at a low financing rate of up to 3.5 per cent per year), could also boost home ownership in the long run.

“In addition, the RM25 million allocation to Cagamas for mortgage guarantee for first-time buyers earning up to RM5,000 monthly is expected to further accelerate the growth of the property market,” he said.

He expressed hope that the government’s intention to extend the loan tenure under the Public Sector Home Financing Board from 30 years to 35 years for first financing, and 25 years to 30 years for second financing, would alleviate the financial pressure for those who were hampered by high monthly loan instalment payments.

Soam said the RM1.5 billion allocation for affordable housing projects under the People’s Housing Programme, the Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Programme, PR1MA and Syarikat Perumahan Nasional Bhd would ensure that affordable houses would continue to be made available for those eligible.

“We hope the government will continue to undertake the provision of this category of houses,” he said.

However, Soam said the introduction of new impositions, namely the five to 10 per cent real property gains tax for houses sold for more than RM200,000, as well as the increase in stamp duty for houses priced above RM1 million from three per cent to four per cent, were viewed as untimely.

“These measures will definitely impact the industry, especially in these trying times,” he added.

– BERNAMA

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