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Saturday, October 9, 2010

New projects to further boost land value in Damansara Heights

A street view of Seventy Damansara – one of the new projects in Damansara Heights.

Located up in the hills amidst quiet surroundings and just minutes away from the Kuala Lumpur city centre, Damansara Heights is easily one of the most exclusive neighbourhoods in the Klang Valley.

It helps too that there is not a lot of vacant land up for sale there, making for a very much sought after address for property investors seeking good resale value.

“The scarcity of land within the Damansara area definitely adds to the appeal of Damansara Heights. There is a lot of supply there but its mostly within the secondary market,” Landspecs principal Chan Khay Eng tells StarBizWeek.

In Chan’s opinion, land being limited in supply does appreciate over a length of time in value, but adds that this applies to all landed properties everywhere.

“However, new landed developments tend to have a significant influence on existing property prices,” he says. Chan says sellers of landed properties in Damansara Heights often compare prices of their properties to newer gated developments such as those in Sri Hartamas, Desa ParkCity and Damansara Utama.

“This tends to be unrealistic as the types of properties are different in the various locations. However, because of limited supply of landed properties in Damansara Heights, sellers are holding on to their asking prices.” Chan says property owners in Damansara Heights would never sell unless it is absolutely necessary. “The reason people sell is because they’re moving overseas or have received a good offer.”

According to him, the transacted prices for bungalow lots are averaging between RM300 per sq ft to RM380 per sq ft. For newer areas such as Setiabakti and Murni, prices average between RM600 per sq ft to RM630per sq ft.

For detached and terrace houses, transacted prices start from RM400 per sq ft while semi-detached homes start from about RM500 per sq ft. Chan says the prices of the homes however depended on various factors, such as location, condition and quality of building.

On, Damansara Heights is described as a panoramic township that caters to the high-end demands of Malaysians and expatriates of all walks of life.

“With its first class facilities, restaurants serving international cuisines and a trendy nightlife, Damansara Heights is considered a prime location due to its easy accessibility from the city centre and Petaling Jaya.

“From Bangsar, Jalan Maarof smoothly connects to Jalan Damansara, while Jalan Duta and Jalan Semantan provide excellent accessibility to Damansara Heights for those coming from the North-South Highway,” the website says.

Given its exclusivity and prime location, land value in Damansara Heights has been on a steady incline in the past two years, says Zerin Properties chief executive officer Previndran Singhe.

“Land values on average (in Damansara Heights) are about RM450 to RM700 per sq ft. Prices have appreciated since early this year by a good 5% to 10%. Since 2008, prices have increased 15% to 30%. Prices are definitely higher than Bangsar for detached homes and semi detached units, but terrace homes in Bangsar are more pricey than those in Bukit Damansara and Medan Damansara. For condominiums, Damansara Twins is the newest and is higher than Mont’ Kiara and in tandem with KLCC and Bangsar high-end condominiums,” he says.

Over the years, there has been talk that some areas within Damansara Heights have started looking a little run-down.

Says Previn: “Like any old neighbourhood, there will be some run down homes but in Damansara Heights, rejuvenation of these homes happen very fast.”

Despite the scarcity of land in Damansara Heights, new projects would help to rejuvenate the area.

One of them is Panareno Sdn Bhd’s Twins @ Damansara Heights.

Other projects which have helped to add interest in the area are newer developments like Seventy Damansara and Idamansara, both by the Eastern & Oriental Bhd group and Anggun, a project by L & H Property Development Sdn Bhd.

Twins @ Damansara Heights is a condominium development that starts from RM675,000 and Anggun consists of bungalow homes that range from RM6.5mil to RM9.5mil.

Previn says new projects in the pipeline would have short-term impact and in the long-term, could lead to an increase in traffic flow.

“But with the proposed LRT extension and new roads, I think the impact will be positive.”

Steven, a real estate agent from Rina Property, says prices of residential homes within the Damansara Heights area had appreciated between 10% and 20% in the past two years.

“Given that it’s prime location, I expect prices to continue escalating. I just don’t see it going down.”

By The Star

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