The rising costs of building materials, combined with the rampant speculation, has driven property prices beyond the reach of many Malaysians, especially young working couples. A check on Malaysian property portal, HomeGuru.com.my, revealed that even the prices of condominiums along Jalan Ipoh in KL is hovering around the RM400/sq ft range.
Under the My First House Scheme, first-time house buyers in Malaysia will not have to pay the 10% down payment and will be able to obtain a 100% loan. However not everyone will be able to enjoy this scheme as mentioned, it is only for those with a household income of less than RM3000 per month.
Besides this, there are also other requirements which must be met by the home buyers such as the property having a maximum price of RM222,000, stamp duty exemption of 50% on transfer on a house RM350, 000 or less, and stamp duty exemption on 50% for loan agreement instruments to finance first time buyers.
Also, in conjunction with the scheme other projects were also announced to assist the poor and low-income group such as the Projeck Bantuan Perumahan Bandar where 300 units of affordable homes will be built, the Program Perumahan Rakyat of which 79,000 units will be up for sale and Bantuan Rumah Sewa where 8000 units of property will be rented out.
These recent moves by the government are certainly a commendable effort in assisting the lower income group in obtaining their first home, however, it also comes with its drawbacks. For example, if a buyer who takes a full 100% home loan will end up paying a higher monthly instalment than average, due to the higher loan amount. Hence, instead of helping this particular group of people it could also potentially cause financial burden as well.
While the response has been lacklustre so far, it is the government’s responsibility to convince the Malaysian public that is not a publicity stunt to garner votes and that they truly care about the welfare of the people. Like Iskandar Malaysia, the My First House Scheme requires a lot more follow through for it to be truly successful.