Hedge against inflation before property market picks up again


GEORGE TOWN: Property hunters should take advantage of the low bank interest rates to buy properties now as a hedge against inflation.

Eco World (North) general manager Khoo Teck Chong saidGeorgetown_SC the current rates were among the lowest in the history of housing loans in the country.

“This should spur buying which would help clear the excess stock in the market. We can expect the property market to pick up again in the second half of 2017,” he said at the four-day StarProperty.my Fair here which began yesterday.

Following Bank Negara’s move to cut the overnight policy rate (OPR) by 25 basis points to 3%, banks are expected to adjust the interest rates for housing loans to about 4.25% from about 4.4%.

Khoo said as market sentiments improved gradually, Eco World expected its projects in Penang to generate about RM600mil this financial year ending Oct 31, 2016, compared with RM200mil in the previous year.

Eco World is among the developers showcasing projects at the StarProperty.my Fair which is being held at Gurney Plaza and Gurney Paragon Mall.

Landed residential properties, which are becoming scarce on Penang island, are among the key attractions of the fair.

Zeon Properties chief executive officer Leon Lee said landed projects marketed by his company were located strategically on the island and in Seberang Prai.

“The properties, priced from RM1.5mil to RM3.5mil, received very encouraging queries from visitors, even on the first day of the fair.

“This is because landed projects, especially those in strategic locations, are rare items in property fairs nowadays due to land shortage and high land cost,” he added.

Zeon Properties is marketing landed properties by Tawakar Group, Devoteshens Sdn Bhd and Aroma Development Sdn Bhd.

The company is also marketing projects by Mah Sing Group Bhd, Ewein Bhd and Visentak Capital Sdn Bhd.

“We will be giving a 10% to 15% discount for all the properties marketed by us,” Lee said.

A total of 19 developers are showcasing their projects at the fair organised by the Star Media Group with Zeon Properties as the event partner.

Visitors stand the chance to win prizes such as tablets and smartphones in the daily Spin & Win Contest.

There are also daily property-related talks. The fair is open from 10am to 10pm until Sunday. Admission is free.