News: Sabah's real estate industry flourishing
Sabah's property market expects to see higher sales this year, on the back of rising private investments and the booming palm oil industry, according to a report by Oxford Business Group.
However, several industry players noted that the regulations implemented last year by Bank Negara Malaysia are cooling buying activity.
According to the Sabah Housing and Real Estate Developers Association (SHAREDA), transactions increased 20 percent to over 1,500 properties last year, and they are expecting higher sales in 2012 thanks to the launch of eco-friendly homes, which are expected to spur greater demand.
"In 2011 we sold a record US$158.02 million (RM493.5 million) worth of properties and we hope to maintain that figure this year or do even better," said Susan Wong Siew Guen, President of SHAREDA.
Wong also claimed that BNM's strict loan guidelines - which include the use of net income instead of gross income as a benchmark for approving mortgages - has slowed down property buying activity in the state.
An Edge/Rahim & Company Kota Kinabalu Housing Property Monitor report revealed that BNM's guidelines came at a time when sales of properties in the state were recording robust figures.
The report also showed that transactions value grew 3.7 percent to US$407.69 million (RM1.27 billion) during Q1 2012. Moreover, prices of homes across various segments were steadily rising.
Prices of two-storey terraced homes for resale climbed four percent by average during the quarter, while prices of houses at three residential projects - Ujana Kingfisher, Taman Sri Borneo and Millennium Heights - posted an increase of over 15 percent year-on-year.
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