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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

JB has land for affordable houses

For the price of a low-end apartment unit in Penang, a buyer can get a double-storey terrace house in places like Kulai or Pasir Gudang in Johor

First-time buyers can still own ‘decent’ houses

JOHOR BARU: There are still large tracts of land in Johor Baru that have potential be developed into residential properties with decent built-up area and offered at affordable prices to first-time local house buyers, said Johor Real Estate and Housing Developers Association branch chairman Koh Moo Hing.

He told StarBiz that land supply had never been an issue in Johor, unlike in Penang and the Klang Valley. “It is a well-known fact that developers in these two areas are hampered by the excessively high prices of land.''

Koh said since the inception of Iskandar Malaysia, land prices in the economic growth corridor had risen steadily between 30% and 40%, depending on the locations. He described the prices of properties in Iskandar as “still reasonable and competitive.”

He said Iskandar would be the one of main factors that contributed to the positive growth in the Johor Baru property market as it helped boost demand for houses in the area.

“Confidence in Johor is now at all-time high the progress in Iskandar is not only about Johor but the nation as well,'' added Koh.

Government-backed Iskandar sprawls on a 2,217 sq km in the southern-most part of Johor and is divided into five flagship development zones the Johor Baru City Centre, Nusajaya, Eastern Gate Development, Western Gate Development and Senai-Kulai.

Koh said improvement in connectivity and accessibility in Iskandar would prompt first-time house buyers to look at other locations in the vicinity which were previously unpopular.

“Developers with land in the suburban areas of Iskandar can offer affordable houses to first-time house buyers as location is no longer an issue to them,'' he said adding that developers in places like Senai, Kulai, Ulu Tiram, Pasir Gudang and Kota Tinggi were popular with first-time house buyers as they offered houses priced at between RM110,000 and RM220,000.

Koh said the Johor property market had yet to reach the “boiling point” like in Penang island, where prices of residential properties had soared by more than 25% over the last five years.

IOI Properties Bhd senior general manager Simon Heng likened the situation in Penang to Hong Kong or Singapore where developers had to fully utilise every inch of land available for their projects for maximum returns.

Heng said a house buyer in Penang pays between RM200,000 and RM300,000 to get a lower-end apartment. For that kind of money, he would get a single-storey or a double-storey terrace in places like Kulai, Kangkar Pulai, Pasir Gudang, Ulu Tiram and Kota Tinggi.

Access to these areas had improved tremendously over the years, in tendem with the development of Iskandar, he added.

Heng who is Rehda past chairman said: “On the average, prices of residential properties in Iskandar Malaysia have increased between 15% and 20% over the years as demand is good,'' he said.

IOI Properties ongoing projects in south Johor include Bandar Putra Kulai a 2,428.11ha integrated township project where 809.37ha had been developed with 11,000 houses. Its other project is the 121.40ha Taman Kempas Utama. Both projects will keep the company busy for eight years with a gross development value of RM4bil.

Meanwhile, SP Setia Bhd executive vice-president (property division) Datuk Chang Khim Wah said Iskandar was still a good place for bigger landed properties due to the availability of land here.

“Comparing Penang to Johor Baru is like comparing an apple to an orange; they are two different places with different market scenarios,'' he said.

Chang said when developers offered their products, they did that based on the market demand and also the suitability of the project's site whether for high-density or landed residential properties.

He said even though Iskandar still had plenty of land for the landed residential propertes, demand for apartments or condominiums was on the upward trend in the last four or five years.

“Condo living is catching up in Iskandar as buyers are getting younger; most of them are below 40 years old and open to new ideas,'' he said.

Chang said most of condo buyers were Malaysian professionals working in Singapore and young families who opted for safety and security offered by developers in their projects.

He said the company's service apartment in Bukit Indah and Setia Tropika was selling between RM400 and RM450 per sq ft and the rate was consider lower compared with service apartments in Penang or the Klang Valley.

Chang said on that note, the company would be launching its Setia Sky 88 service apartment on a 1.61ha site at Jalan Abdullah Tahir in three months with an indicative selling price between RM600 and RM700 per sq ft.

The project consists of three towers with 55-storey block each. Phase one will have 294 apartment units.

By The Star

Vie for a Mah Sing suite

Special rebates are offered during the property promotion and buyers will have the chance to win a Garden Plaza executive suite in Cyberjaya.

Property investors will have a field day in Penang with the latest showcase of new developments by the Mah Sing Group. Special rebates are offered during the property promotion and buyers will have the chance to win a Garden Plaza executive suite in Cyberjaya.

Scheduled for June 23-24 at the Hotel Equatorial Penang on Bukit Jambul, the latest event is part of the roadshow covering Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Johor.

The showcase highlights 11 landed and high-rise residential and commercial developments throughout the Klang Valley, especially Kuala Lumpur, as well as Penang island and Johor Baru, namely:

  • Icon City (Petaling Jaya)
  • M City (Jalan Ampang)
  • Icon Residence Mont’ Kiara (KL)
  • Garden Residence (Cyberjaya)
  • Garden Plaza (Cyberjaya)
  • Kinrara Residence (Puchong)
  • Legenda@Southbay (Penang island)
  • Southbay Plaza (Penang island)
  • Austin Suites (Johor Baru)
  • M Residence (Rawang)
  • Sierra Perdana (Johor Baru)

Most of the properties are under the Developer Interest Bearing Scheme (DIBS), where purchasers only pay the down payment and nothing else, until the completion of the property, except M Residence (Rawang), Sierra Perdana (Johor Baru) and Palmiera @ Kinrara Residence (Puchong).

Mah Sing will also absorb the legal fees for the sale and purchase agreement and loan agreement for all 11 participating projects. The group’s Realizing Dreams property and lifestyle showcase scheduled from June 16 to Sept 15, was launched last weekend in Kuala Lumpur.

Celebrities and performers will be at each of the showcase event, including the Shanghai Star Acrobatic Ballet, emcees Xandria Ooi and Jeremy Teo, Chef Wan and Chef Daisy.

The roadshow will also have knowledgable speakers on topics such as landscaping and architecture, Feng Shui master David Koh and Vasthu Sastra expert Dr T. Selva.

MRGJC Magic Quest performers Jorinn and Gelvinn will add some magic to the proceedings and the Shanghai Star Acrobatic Ballet will entertain on Sunday.

During the launch last weekend, Mah Sing Group managing director and group chief executive Tan Sri Leong Hoy Kum said the group was one of the few developers to build landed as well as high-rise residential, commercial and even industrial projects in all the property hotspots.

Built in prime locations and achieving high standards, Mah Sing developments on Penang island offer a good proposition whether for own residence or investment.

During the three-month promotion, buyers will need to pay a down payment of only 2% of the purchase price.

Purchaser can also have the option to pay their down payment via 0% interest easy payment programmes up to 36 months with selected banks. Moreover, qualified purchasers will benefit from the Anniversary Lifestyle Package up to RM488,888 depending on the property purchased. Participating partner banks will offer Pre-Approved Loan Assessment as an added convenience for buyers of Mah Sing properties.

The group’s loyal customers - Mah Sing’s M Club members - will enjoy Repeat Purchase Discounts up to 1.8%, as well as M Club Members’ Buyer-Get-Buyer Privilege of 1%.

In conjunction with Mah Sing’s 18th anniversary celebrations, the group is giving away attractive Samsung products as monthly prizes to eligible property buyers. There will be a grand prize of a Garden Plaza executive suite in Cyberjaya, offered at the end of the year.

After Penang, the Realizing Dreams property showcase will be held in Johor Baru at the KSL Resort from June 30 to July 1.

For details, visit any Mah Sing sales gallery. Weekly activities have been planned throughout the 18th anniversary celebrations. Call the hotline: 1300-88-7999 or +604 6288188 (Penang). Log on to www.mahsingrealizingdreams or e-mail:

By The Star

Nadayu eyes twofold rise in sales

NADAYU Properties Bhd aims to increase property sales by twofold to RM400 million this year, led by its latest launch in Bandar Sunway, Selangor.

The developer will be launching Nadayu 28 in August. The project comprises high-rise residences with 10 units of shoplots, worth a combined RM440 million.

"We have enjoyed more than 50 per cent sales before the release. We are certain that once the sales gallery is up in July, there will be more coming in," Nadayu chairman Hamidon Abdullah said.

Hamidon said yesterday after Nadayu's shareholders meeting that the company is expecting to do better in the current fiscal year ending December 31 2012.

Nadayu has RM280 million in unbilled sales, which will be recognised throughout this year, he said.

It also has on-going projects worth about RM1.7 billion, being launched in phases.

For fiscal 2011, Nadayu posted a pre-tax profit of RM26.7 million on revenues of RM175.8 million.

"Today is not just about selling the product and getting purchasers on the table. You have to cross another hurdle which is end financing. This has made the market more difficult," Hamidon said.

"The real truth in a company is what you have done before. It is your track record that will give you the edge. Our priority is a satisfied customer, so we get recurring purchasers," he added.

Hamidon said the company is looking to increase its landbank, from its current size of 362ha.

The current land size, mainly in the Klang Valley and Penang, is expected to generate a gross development value exceeding RM5 billion over the next 10 years.

"We will look at all opportunities to grow the business and expand to new territories," he said.

By Business Times

Mulpha Land: Boutique projects on drawing board

PETALING JAYA: Mulpha Land Bhd, which has four on-going projects with gross development value (GDV) of RM800 million, plans to add more developments in the short term.

Executive director Ghazie Yeoh Abdullah said Mulpha Land will be busy for the next five years, launching boutique developments and expanding into new horizons.

"We have to look at where we want to be in the next three years, and five years. We are opening up into different sectors, and moving into high-growth areas," Ghazie told Business Times in an interview.

Ghazie said part of the bigger plan for the company is to acquire land in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor and in the northern states, as well as undertake property development projects on privatisation basis and joint ventures.

He added that the key is to buy sizeable land that can generate huge GDV and good returns.

"We want to grow our GDV to previous records. We plan to stick to bite-size products as the market seem to be acquiring that. We are expanding our market reach to foreign property buyers," Ghazie said.

He added that Mulpha Land's vision is in line with its parent, Mulpha International Bhd, which is to grow to new heights.

Mulpha International, a diversified conglomerate with shareholder's fund exceeding RM2.9 billion, owns 70.54 per cent of Mulpha Land.

Mulpha Land's existing projects are Bangsar Enclave in Bangsar and Raintree Residence in Ampang, Kuala Lumpur, Bukit Punchor in Penang, and Desa Aman in Kulim, Kedah.

The company has in its pocket, undeveloped land of up to 250ha in the central and northern regions, which will be developed over the next five to eight years, Ghazie said.

Ghazie said all existing and new projects by the company will be Green Building Index rated.

He said Mulpha Land is gearing to introduce its next exclusive project, six luxury bungalows in Bukit Tunku, Kuala Lumpur, targeting high networth locals and Arabs.

Ghazie was appointed to the board of Mulpha Land on May 22 2012, to spearhead business development for the company, including land purchase and new product design.

He has been offered by Mulpha International to exercise the option to acquire 30 million ordinary shares of RM0.10 each in Mulpha Land at a price of RM1.16 per share.

If successful, this means Ghazie will hold 32 per cent of Mulpha Land while Mulpha International will have 38 per cent stake remaining in the property development company.

Mulpha International will receive cash of RM34.8 million if all the call options are exercised.

By Business Times

Ivory Properties sees huge jump in revenue next year

GEORGE TOWN:Ivory Properties Group Bhd expects to see a huge jump in its revenue next year amid several projects to be launched in the second half of this year and early 2013.

Its executive director/chief operating officer, Murly Manokharan, said on Tuesday next year would be exciting for Ivory with the Bayan Mutiara development kicking in and also its position as a turnkey builder for the project.

He said Ivory's balance sheet would be strengthened in the second quarter this year following the acquisition of its associate company, Ivory Villas Sdn Bhd, for RM40mil for the remaining 51% stake.

Ivory will be launching five residential projects in the second half of this year and early 2013 with a gross development value (GDV) of over RM800mil. Among the projects are the phase three and four Penang Times Square in Jalan Dato' Keramat with a GDV of RM300 million.

At a press conference after the group's AGM, Murly said the first phase of residential development in Bayan Mutiara would be launched year-end or the first quarter of next year with a gross development value of between RM700mil and RM800mil.

Other developments include the Island Resort bungalow project in Batu Ferringhi with 22 exclusive units ranging from 5,000 sq ft to 8,000 sq ft at a GDV value of between RM20 million and RM25 million to be launched year-end.

By Bernama

Asas Dunia to launch properties worth RM300mil in Seberang Prai

GEORGE TOWN: Asas Dunia Bhd is launching 1,356 units of landed properties worth approximately RM300mil in gross development value in Seberang Prai from now until the end of 2013, due to the growing interest to invest in properties in Seberang Prai.

The properties comprise largely single- and double-storey properties, priced between RM200,000 to RM600,000.

“We are launching more properties because on top of the trend to buy properties to stay in Seberang Prai, we are also seeing more people buying properties on the mainland for investment.

“They are gradually realising the investment potential of properties in Seberang Prai, as the second bridge is scheduled to be completed soon, and more investments are coming into the industrial park of south Seberang Prai.

“The state government will probably need to expand the Penang Science Park in Bukit Minyak and the industrial estate in Batu Kawan, as there are more small and medium enterprises from Singapore coming into the country,” group managing director Datuk Jerry Chan said after the company's AGM.

As a result of the demand for properties in Seberang Prai, the price for a double-storey semi-detached house in Bukit Mertajam, for example, has increased to RM1mil from about RM500,000 three years ago.

The price of a double-storey terraced house in Bukit Mertajam town is now about RM450,000, approximately 70% higher than the price three years ago.

“But the RM1mil price for a semi-detached house in Bukit Mertajam is still more attractive than that of a semi-detached property on the island, which is priced between RM2.5mil to RM3.5mil.

“The price of a vacant land per sq ft is between RM20 to RM50 per sq ft, double of what it was two years ago, depending on the location,” he said. For the first quarter ended March 31 2012, the group posted pre-tax profit of RM12mil on the back of RM36.4mil revenue, compared with RM8.6mil and RM29.8mil achieved in the corresponding period the previous year.

By The Star

'Private villas part of strategy to capture luxury mart'

KUALA LUMPUR: The Pulai Desaru Beach Resort & Spa in Johor plans to build several units of private villas to capture the luxury market.

The resort sits on a 10.5ha site, of which only a fifth has been utilised.

"We are in the midst of planning an expansion in the resort. We are looking at villas with private swimming pools," its general manager Azmi Sharuddin said.

The villas, which are aimed at capturing luxury holidaymakers, are expected to be ready in about two years.

"We have not decided if we want to sell the villas or if we will own and operate them," Azmi said.

The move will be strategic as the Pulai Desaru is located directly next to Khazanah Nasional Bhd's Desaru Coast development.

Khazanah, through Destination Resorts and Themed Attractions & Resorts, is building a 1,780ha integrated luxury destination with the first phase targeted for completion in 2014.

Meanwhile, not far away, Themed Attractions is building two themes parks, namely Ocean Quest and Ocean Splash.

Once completed, these projects are expected to make Desaru vibrant and attract more visitors. With that, Pulai Desaru wants to capitalise on the anticipated increase in tourists arrivals there.

Pulai Desaru's history can be traced when it was built by Japan-based construction company Fujiko Cio Ltd. It was then named Desaru Perdana Beach Resort. The hotel was bought over by Datuk Chua Jui Leng in 2004 and renamed Pulai Desaru Beach Resort & Spa.

This resort is part of the listed Pulai Springs Bhd, which also operates the Pulai Springs Resort in Johor.

The listed entity is now controlled by the Mah family from Penang.

By Business Times

AZRB eyes redeveloping older buildings along Jalan Sultan Ismail

KUALA LUMPUR: Ahmad Zaki Resources Bhd (AZRB) is eyeing at private projects including redeveloping older buildings along Jalan Sultan Ismail in Kuala Lumpur.

AZRB managing director Datuk Wan Zakariah Wan Muda said on Tuesday that projects at hand included the Sungai Buloh- Kajang KL mass rapid transit (KLMRT) line viaduct 6 and International Islamic University's teaching hospital.

"Besides tendering for government related projects, we are also looking at the private sector such as redevelopment of older buildings along Jalan Sultan Ismail," said Wan Zakariah. He said the company's core business was still engineering and construction which accounted for 83% of its revenue.

By The Star