Tuesday, May 24

iProperty calls for easing MM2H restrictions, property boosts in Budget 2022


Shylendra Nathan

KUCHING: With Budget 2022 set to be tabled by the end of this month, iProperty.com.my (iProperty) has put forth several suggestions it believe could help bolster the recovery of Malaysia’s property market.

“With Malaysia being one of the leading countries with a high vaccination rate, we foresee that the property sector will further recover with improving consumer confidence. Nevertheless, more work needs to be done for the property sector to return to normalcy,” said iProperty general manager Shylendra Nathan in a statement.

iProperty has several suggestions that may help the government make better policies on revitalising the property market.

These include, bolstering foreign home buyer confidence through the easing of Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) programme restrictions.

“However, the government must remain consistent when announcing a revision to the MM2H policy. This will safeguard Malaysia’s reputation as a viable second home to foreign homebuyers and bolster foreign homebuyer interest in the Malaysian property market in the long run. Furthermore, as we transition to an endemic phase by the end of October, the MM2H programme will play a significant role in enabling a better economy after two years of the impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic.

“As such, we propose that the government continue looking into improving the MM2H programme to make it more attractive in terms of eligibility and home buying criteria for future participants and it should be done progressively over a period of time,” Shylendra said.

“We also urge the streamline of the MM2H application process to make it more convenient and accessible to potential participants,” he added.

Aside from that, iProperty also suggested promoting suburbanisation through better infrastructure systems.

“In a bid to decongest central business districts (CBDs) within the Klang Valley and other states’ city centres, we propose that the government to promote suburbanisation. Seeing how the work-from-home (WFH) or hybrid work trend may likely be here to stay for a while even when we transition to endemic, individuals would have less reason to reside close to their place of work and can seek out bigger living spaces in the suburbs instead,” Shylendra said.

“As such, we hope the government will increase efforts in promoting suburban areas and housing as an attractive alternative to dense urban settlements,” he added.

iProperty also suggested facilitating a more conducive environment for first-time home buyers.

“We propose the government streamline the application process for home financing facilities – such as the Rent-to-Own Scheme (RTO), Youth Housing Scheme, Fund for Affordable Homes, and First House Deposit Financing Scheme (MyDeposit) – to further lower the barrier of entry for first-time home buyers,” Shylendra said.

It also suggested an increase in governance within the rental property via the setting up of a digital framework for PropTech firms to develop a comprehensive online system that can help modernise the rental application, management, and payment processes.

Aside from that, it proposed the establishment of a committee to assess efficacy of commission-based jobs such as property agents.

“The annual budget announcement plays a significant role in strengthening the country’s economy and, by extension, the property market as we move forward to a hopeful 2022 with a brighter landscape.

“To that end, we are open to collaborating with the government and providing valuable property market data, including consumer demand for the subsale and rental markets.

“We believe our resources can assist the government in making more well-informed decisions and policies to enhance our local property market,” Shylendra concluded.