Kota Kinabalu (The Star/ANN) - More people will buy cheaper houses in the suburbs of Malaysia if the government improves the infrastructure there.
A city condominium would cost about 600 ringgit (US$192) per sq foot whereas in the outskirts, which was about 10 kilometres to 20km away, it would only cost about 300 ringgit per square foot, said Susan Wong, president of Sabah Housing and Real Estate Developers Association (Shareda).
"Developers and the government should decentralise their housing projects and develop the outskirts and rural areas in Sabah.
"A lot of people are not willing to buy houses in places like Papar, Kinarut or Tuaran because of poor roads and lack of amenities."
Wong added that the situation would be different if the people did not have to worry about the narrow and bumpy roads or lack of street lighting and shops in such areas.
"This situation is similar to what residents in the peninsula are facing, but they have smooth and wide roads there.
"Developers are willing to build more affordable homes, provided that the government provides better facilities," Wong said.
She also revealed that Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman had assured developers that the government would build more roads and better infrastructure in the outskirts.
Meanwhile, Syarikat Perumahan Nasional Berhad (SPNB) is also planning to build more affordable homes in Sabah to help low-income families under the 1Malaysia People-Friendly (RMR1M) programme.
(US$1 = 3.12 ringgit)