MALAYSIAN property developers have been blamed for the rise in unsold houses caused by a lack of understanding on market demands, but one company says the allegation was “absolutely” untrue.
According to Free Malaysia Today, Anthony Kam Cho, a developer based in the historic city of Melaka, said the market conditions were heavily affected by external issues such the trade war between the United States and China, lower prices of commodities, a cooling global economy, and local and international sentiments as well.
He said these factors led to people being more cautious about spending money while the situation did not necessarily reflect the lack of demand.
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Recently, Malaysian developers have collectively made headlines over an apparent glut in the property market.
Real Estate portal Hartabumi earlier said the developers were partly to blame for building properties that were not aligned with the demands of the market.
Some RM19.54 billion (US$4.7 billion) in unsold homes were recorded last year, of which most of them involved units priced over RM500,000 (US$120,481) and above per unit.
Cho said there were still keen buyers around but they were unable to obtain loans or were waiting for prices to fall.
“The property market moves in a cycle, and like any cycle, there will be an oversupply of stock. The people still need houses, more so when our population is growing,” he was quoted as saying.
“Once the economy picks up again, both locally and internationally, the buyer sentiment will return and there will be ready stock.”
While the government has introduced incentives such as the stamp duty waiver for first time house owners, Cho said people would still be ver cautious with the spending.
“Prices reflecting the current market conditions are normal and should not be a result of overpriced property. Developers treat properties as stock, so just like supermarkets, they will sell their stock, even at losses to recoup their capital for future investment.”
Meanwhile, Tang Chee Meng, chief operating officer of Henry Butcher Malaysia said most developers carried out studies on the market before rolling out their products.
“However getting statutory approvals takes time and sometimes market dynamics may have shifted by the time approval is obtained,” he said.
The developers, especially public-listed ones, have to continue launching as they need to maintain their profit forecasts and not affect their share price.”