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Sunday, 12 October 2014

Home, sweet home for young couples will lead to housing industry boon in M'sia

A NEW Youth Housing Scheme has been set up by the Government to help young couples, whose household income does not exceed RM10,000, buy their first home.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the maximum 35-year loan offered a funding limit not exceeding RM500,000 for married youth, aged between 25 and 40 years old.

“The Government will provide monthly financial assistance of RM200 to borrowers for the first two years to reduce the burden of monthly instalments,” he said.

Najib described the scheme as a smart partnership between the Government, Bank Simpanan Nasional, Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and Cagamas.

The Government will also give a 50% stamp duty exemption on the instrument of transfer and loan agreements, as well as 10% loan guarantee to enable borrowers to obtain full financing, including cost of insurance.

Borrowers can also withdraw from their EPF Account 2 to top up their monthly instalment and other related costs.

“I urge the youth to grab this opportunity which is offered on first-come-first-served basis for 20,000 units only,” he said.

To address the issue of home ow­­nership at affordable prices, RM1.3bil will be allocated to build 80,000 units under the 1Malaysia People’s Housing Programme (PR1MA).

To enable more people to own houses, under the scheme, the cei­ling of household income has been raised from RM8,000 to RM10,000.

“In addition, a Rent-To-Own Scheme will be introduced specifically for individuals who are unable to obtain bank financing,” he said.

RM644mil will be allocated to the National Housing Department (JPN) to build 26,000 units under the People’s Housing Programme (PPR).

He said Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad (SPNB) would build 12,000 units of Rumah Mesra Rakyat, 5,000 units of Rumah Idaman Rakyat and 20,000 units of Rumah Aspirasi Rakyat on privately-owned land.

For first-time house buyers, the Government has agreed to extend the 50% stamp duty exemption and increase the purchase limit from RM400,000 to RM500,000.

Exemption will be given until Dec 31, 2016.

The minimum eligibility for hou­sing loans will be increased from RM80,000 to RM120,000 while the maximum eligibility limit will be increased from RM450,000 to RM600,000.

The RM100 application processing fee for housing loan will be abo­lished.

The Government will improve the1Malaysia Civil Servants’ Housing (PPA1M) by reducing the minimum price of houses currently at RM150,000 to RM90,000 per unit.

He added that the qualifying requirement of household income for this would be increased from RM8,000 to RM10,000 per month.

Housing industry boon

PETALING JAYA: Measures under Budget 2015 will positively impact the housing industry, especially in promoting home ownership among the lower and middle income group, said the Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association Malaysia (Rehda).

The association supported the Government’s effort to raise the ceiling of household income from RM8,000 to RM10,000 for PR1MA homes and the Rent-To-Own scheme to help those unable to obtain financing, said Rehda president Datuk Seri FD Iskandar.

He said Rehda also lauded the new Youth Housing Scheme which would “certainly benefit young couples who wish to own a home.”

He said the 10% loan guarantee to enable borrowers to obtain full financing and the RM200 monthly financial aid would help reduce the burden of borrowers.

HBA secretary-general Chang Kim Loong also said the housing scheme for young married couples was commendable.

However Chang said providing the RM200 subsidy, in the first two-years, may send a wrong message.

He said borrowers may start to spend beyond their means and might end up in financial difficulty after the subsidy ends.

Chang said the Government must also ensure eligible first time house buyers actually stay in these units and not rent it out.

Chang said HBA supported the move to build more affordable housing but wanted these homes to reach the right target market. “These homes must be built at the right place and reasonable prices of between RM150,000 to RM300,000; and not more than RM400,000 in prime locations,” he said.

By Neville Spykerman The Star/Asia News Network

‘First-time house-buyers will spur property market’

GEORGE TOWN: First-time housebuyers are sure to spur the property market following the introduction of the Youth Housing Scheme.

International Real Estate Federation Malaysia vice-president Michael Geh said the scheme announced under Budget 2015 will help them to own property costing less than RM500,000.

He said the property market had been “cool” for the past six months since the developers interest-bearing scheme was abolished, resulting in many first-time buyers unable to obtain bank loans.

“The scheme shows our Government is well aware of the plight faced by this group.

“It will certainly spur the property market,” he said.

The scheme, a smart partnership between the Government, Bank Simpanan Nasional, Employees Provident Fund and Cagamas, is offered on a first-come first-served basis for 20,000 units only.

It offers a funding limit for a first home not exceeding RM500,000 for married couples between 25 and 40 years old with a household income not exceeding RM10,000. The maximum loan period is 35 years.

The Malaysian Association of Hotels Penang Chapter said that the RM89bil from tourism targeted under Budget 2015 was an ambitious figure.

Its chairman Khoo Boo Lim said the RM316mil allocation for various programmes under the Ministry of Tourism and Culture should be used wisely to ensure good returns.

By Tan Sin Chow AND Chong Kah Yuan The Star/Asia News Network

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