News: One Million Affordable Homes Promise Achievable, Says Zuraida

Jan 3, 2020

Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin said the government is on track to achieve its one million affordable housing units promise for the B40 group within 10 years.

This comes as private developers are willing to build more houses priced below RM300,000.

To date, 39,864 affordable housing units have been completed nationwide, another 181,211 units are under construction and 386,340 are being planned.

“For the ministry, this is a major promise with a target of 100,000 units a year. Private developers have been actively involved in the construction of these affordable homes,” said Zuraida in an interview with Bernama.

Other categories of houses being developed include 4,245 units under the civil servant housing scheme (PPAM), 4,448 units for youth transit homes and 3,898 units under the people’s housing project (PPR) – all of which are set for completion this year.

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She revealed that Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad (SPNB) has also provided homes to 4,989 families nationwide. Of these, 3,019 units were Rumah Mesra Rakyat, while the other 1,970 were under SPNB Affordable Housing scheme.

Zuraida shared that private developers understood the market’s needs for homes priced at less than RM300,000 and are willing to respond to the government’s call to scale down their construction of luxury homes.

“They understood that many luxury houses are unsold or are still in the selling process, so it would not be appropriate for them to keep building it,” she said.

She noted that the issue of unsold luxury homes arose due to the mismatch in supply and demand following the lack of proper data for planning activities.

To address this issue, her ministry is developing a data system which will provide information based on housing demand according to price and location.

“The system is expected to be ready by the end of 2020. This data will provide a more accurate analysis of housing planning, especially for private developers,” said Zuraida.

She added that the National Affordable Housing Policy (DRMM) also highlighted the comfort of house buyers by setting a minimum area of 900 sq ft as well as amenities like recreational facilities and halls.

“We are refining this mechanism. Houses that follow this new method are in the process of tendering, so by 2020, the construction of houses under KPKT will follow the DRMM specification,” she said.

The government is also working to raise home ownership via various programmes such as rent to own (RTO) scheme to help potential buyers of PPR units who are not eligible for financing by financial institutions.

“If they are able to pay the monthly rent consistently, it can be used as a supporting document to apply for a loan when they are ready,” explained Zuraida.

At present, there are seven RTO projects, with Selangor and Kelantan having two each, while Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Negeri Sembilan will have one each.

 

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Catherine Wong
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KITH AND KIN REALTY SDN BHD
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