"Malaysia('s property market) still has much growth. The market here is exciting and there is a lot of potential and resources. Malaysia can become a really solid country with its hardworking people," he told SunBiz in an interview.
Tan, who is also ERA Realty Network Pte Ltd group division director and a practising real estate agent, said property prices in Singapore have driven buyers to Malaysia due to its closeness in terms of proximity and culture.
"A lot of Singaporeans buy their second home or investment properties here. There is a lot of interest here, especially in Iskandar Malaysia (Johor). There is a lot of interest from Singaporeans, but we always advise them to do research prior to investing," he said.
Tan said while Singapore's property market has gone through a few rounds of corrections, property prices in Kuala Lumpur have been constantly rising since 2004.
Although the issues in Europe and the US have resulted in expatriates pulling out and weakening the rental market, there has been a good influx of foreign interest from South Korea and Japan.
"There is still a lot of opportunities for real estate agents in this segment," he added.
Meanwhile, the cooling measures introduced by the Singapore government has also helped attract interest to Malaysia, with Malaysian property developers taking the opportunity to ramp up their marketing efforts in Singapore.
However, there is still strong demand in Singapore's properties despite the cooling measures, especially from Chinese investors, said Tan.
"(It's just that Singaporean) investors are now taking their time to buy instead of rushing in and chasing prices. There are still transactions (in Singapore properties)," he added.
On property buying trends in Malaysia, Tan said it is moving towards online buying, selling and marketing.
"Technology provides convenience and productivity, one can search for properties online at any time and anywhere. This is already happening in Singapore and we foresee that happening in Kuala Lumpur over the next two to three years.
"There is an evident trend that Malaysia is moving towards that direction with the various online forums and property portals," he said.
Tan said going online means buyers can do research before viewing properties or meeting up with agents, saving time and money. At the same time, real estate agents know the calls they get are more likely to be hot leads rather than cold calls.
"However, there is still a segment of buyers who still use newspapers to search for properties. For example, the older generation and those who are less internet-savvy.
"In Singapore, buyers who want to buy landed properties do not search online. There is still a certain type of buyer who like traditional media thus it is important to have both (mediums)," he added.
By Eva Yeong email@example.com
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