Properties in Penang still drawing buyers

Residential property in Penang is still drawing local and foreign buyers, despite the current challenging times.

Henry Butcher (Malaysia) Penang director Dr Teoh Poh Huat said property investment was perceived as a good hedge against inflation.

“It is still a preferred form of investment compared to unit trusts or stocks.

“It has been proven that property will always see increases in returns from capital value and rentals,” he said.

Enquiries on purchasing property in Penang were coming from potential buyers in countries such as the UK, Australia, Japan, and Korea, Dr Teoh said.

“Buyers are interested in buying or renting property in the Batu Ferringhi area,” he said, adding that homes in Penang still offered the best deals in the region for investors.

Dr Teoh said that some 100 investors from Jakarta and North Sumatra would be visiting The Star Property & Home Fair 2008, which will be held on Sept 5 to Sept 7 at the Penang International Sports Arena (PISA).

He said MAS was also sponsoring free tickets to fly journalists from the UK, Hong Kong, and Indonesia to cover the event.

Dr Teoh said the majority of foreigners preferred super condominiums, gated and guarded community schemes.

“We have, for example, many purchasers from Hong Kong enquiring to buy such property.

“Super condominiums with good lifestyle concept and reliable security always appeal to them. The preferred price is between RM2mil to RM3mil. Pricing is not a major factor for consideration,” he said.

Teoh added that homes in Pulau Tikus, Tanjung Tokong, Tanjung Bungah and Batu Ferringhi were preferred.

“Batu Ferringhi seems to be very popular among the English and Australians,” he said.

On new projects, Teoh said fewer residential project launches were expected in the immediate term.

“The limited supply of developable land and the general increase in land prices in recent years had added to the total development costs.

“The affordable housing sector will be the first to be impacted negatively by rising costs.

“Based on today’s land value and given the existing local authority’s planning guidelines, it will be quite difficult to supply affordable homes in the near future unless the basic macro and micro challenges are addressed.

“The mid end of the market will also be affected but to a lesser extent while the high end of the market will continue to attract entrepreneurs’ attention as margins are highest,” he said.

For enquiries on The Star Property & Home Fair 2008, call Bessie Lim or Lillian Yeoh at 04-6473418.

By DAVID TAN (The Star)

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