| February 18, 2014
Opposition leaders, however, remind the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry to also protect the property market
PAS central working committee member Dzulkefly Ahmad said the Ministry must take appropriate action so that the measures would not hurt the property market.
“Any effective measures to curb speculative activities must be supported but intervention should not stifle the market.
“The measures must be appropriate and research-based. The Ministry should not overdo it,” Dzulkefly told FMT.
KPKT Minister Abdul Rahman Dahlan yesterday said property developers who intend to make bulk sales of more than four units must obtain prior approval from the Controller of Housing.
The new enforcement would be prescribed as a mandatory requirement in every advertisement and sale permit for housing development.
Commenting on the probable increase for the MyHome scheme, Dzulkefly said the scheme was similar to the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M), adding that it would cause a dent on the fiscal budget deficit.
“This scheme is just a short term measure, it does not address the need for increasing disposable income,” he said.
“Wages have not increased proportionally with the price of houses. If it (salary) is going to be lagging behind, the issue of affordability will go into play and no amount of subsidy will help.”
The government recently announced an allocation of RM300 million for the private affordable ownership housing programme, to be launched on April 1.
Under the scheme, the government will subsidise first-time buyers, who earn less than RM3,000 a month, up to RM30,000 to purchase low-cost houses.
Prices of houses exhorbitant
PKR strategy director Rafizi Ramli, meanwhile, lauded the move, saying it was a step in the right direction.
“Several factors have led to speculation in the last few years and bulk sales was one. Curbing excessive bulk sales can help towards reducing property speculation.
“However, the implementation has to ensure that it is transparent. Because even if you set the condition, people can still work their way around it,” said the Pandan MP.
He added that although speculation may not be eliminated entirely, it can at least be reduced.
“This move can make it difficult for them (to speculate). And this will hopefully reduce the excessive price of houses,” he added.
Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) treasurer A Sivarajan also said that the idea was a step in the right direction.
“It is definitely welcomed. This may be the start of how we can curb the issue (speculation),” said Sivarajan.
Sivarajan suggested that the government come out with a database of those who own more than two houses.
“The data might show the disparity between people owning more than two houses and those who do not own even one house.”
He pointed out how many seem to buy houses but do not live in the respective houses.
“Just go and take a drive at night, you can see how only a few rooms in condominiums have their lights switched on,” he said.