Build more luxury homes at your own peril, Penang exco tells developers

Opalyn Mok
Jagdeep said many unsold housing units in Penang are priced above RM500,000. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

GEORGE TOWN, Aug 16 — Developers who continue to build high-end homes must deal with any eventual lack of demand on their own, state exco Jagdeep Singh Deo said.

The local government, housing development and town and country planning committee chairman said many unsold units in Penang are priced above RM500,000.

“If developers want to continue to build luxurious housing, they have to build it at their own peril. Don’t come to us complaining about unsold units,” he said in a press conference in Komtar today.

Jagdeep referred to recently released statistics by National Property Information Centre (Napic) that said Penang has 4,092 residential overhang units as at the first quarter of 2018.

“Napic terms properties that were unsold after nine months from completion as overhang units and some of these units take longer to sell so it is not very accurate,” he said.

He said out of the 4,092 units, nearly 60 per cent were priced above RM500,000.

However, he rejected a news report claiming Penang has the largest glut based on this figure.

“We must look at the types of units that were unsold,” he said.

On Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng saying the Sales and Services Tax (SST) will not be imposed on building materials, Jagdeep said this meant housing prices will go down soon.

He said in Penang, affordable housing prices are capped at RM300,000 while at national level it was from RM500,000 and below.

“I want to call upon the housing minister to collaborate with the finance minister to come up with a new ceiling for affordable housing nationally,” he said.

Jagdeep said there is a need to review and reduce the price limit of affordable housing especially in light of lowering costs.

Earlier, Jagdeep announced that an affordable housing expo will be held this weekend at Prangin Mall, and which will include PR1MA for the first time.

The expo, on August 18 and 19, will showcase 13 developers with a total 6,284 units for sale.

All housing units on showcase are priced below RM300,000.