Major property developers in Malaysia are urging the government to allow other types of properties to benefit from PR1MA's step-up end-financing scheme.
Notably, this funding scheme reduces the monthly instalments home buyers pay in the first five years, then increases it thereafter, making it easier for people to purchase their own houses.
At present, this only applies to PR1MA properties, which restrict the choices of buyers. But if the coverage is expanded, more people can purchase houses, said IJM Land Bhd Managing Director Edward Chong.
"If the government intends to help first-time buyers to get houses, it can't be just PRIMA as the buyers might settle down in other locations. Developers are willing to meet the standards set for PR1MA housing for the projects that participate in this financing scheme.â€
JKG Land Managing Director Datuk Teh Kean Ming also suggested that Putraja could copy the policies of Singapore's Housing and Development Board (HDB) to provide more low-cost housing.
"For people who can't afford to buy, they can first rent the home, and they can upgrade their home in the future. It is a more sustainable measure as you help the rakyat create wealth instead of pumping in money to allow people to buy homes.â€
Home builders who participated in StarProperty's roundtable entitled "Wishlist for Malaysia's Property Industry in Budget 2018â€ also hopes for the re-imposition of the developer interest bearing scheme (DIBS) for first-time home buyers, particularly for houses costing under RM600,000.
DIBS enables developers to pay the home buyers' loan interest while the property is being built.
"There are many first-time buyers in the primary market. The DIBS scheme increases the affordability factor for the buyers" noted Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents vice-president Kelvin Yip.
To ease the pressure on Malaysia' residential sector, he proposed delaying the introduction of the four percent stamp duty in January 2018 from three percent previously for homes costing at least RM1 million.
Meanwhile, Mah Sing Group CEO Datuk Ho Hon Sang wants the stamp duty exemption to be increased from houses priced below RM300,000 to properties costing up to RM700,000.
He is also urging the government to raise the allocation of EPF account two for housing loan payment from 30 percent to 40 percent.