New Straits Times, Photo Credit to PropertyLife
clock 12-07-2018
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Property Market Remains Challenging

JKG Land Bhd expects continued challenging times ahead and like other property developers and has appealed to the government to liberalise housing loan criteria for homebuyers.

"This year, we hope to maintain our performance in the midst of this challenging property market," said executive deputy chairman Datuk Chuah Chin Ah.

"We think one of the ways to stimulate the market is for the government to consider lowering borrowing costs for housing loans.

"Currently, the bank's rejection rate of housing loans to housebuyers is quite high," he told reporters after JKG Land's shareholders' meeting here today.

Also present were JKG Land managing director Datuk Teh Kean Ming, executive directors Datuk Thor Poh Seng, directors Tan Sri Tan Hua Choon, Datuk Seri Tan Han Chuan, Datin Tan Ching Ching and Lee Yu-Jin.

On the National Affordable Housing Council (NAHC), Teh said the company supported the government's vision of setting the minimum size of a low cost apartment at 900 sq ft.

"We hope to see further engagement on policy details and ways to incentivise this initiative to materialise.”

Teh added that JKG Land, via the Real Estate and Housing Developers Association (Rehda), would seek engagement with the ministry on details of the new policy and find win-win formula that can fulfil the government's vision as well as that of property developers.

The new Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin announced the NAHC formation, following the change in government after the 14th General Elections.

This body now groups all government agencies supervising affordable homes under one roof and oversees housing demand and supply in the country.

Zuraida also announced the National Community Policy to mandate affordable homes, such as the People's Housing Project flats, to be at least 900 sq ft in size instead of the current 600 sq ft.

The minister highlighted the design of current low-cost flats are too claustrophobic.

She noted that many families of low income earning households live with their extended families in overcrowded and unhealthy environment.

"I do not want the People's Housing Project living quarters, those for the Bottom 40 percentile of low income earners (B40 group), to be so small, like that of birds' nests," the minister reportedly said.

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