Executive Commentary: Malaysia National Budget 2023

The Country Manager, PropertyGuru Malaysia (PropertyGuru.com.my and iProperty.com.my) shares their views on the housing perspective of the Malaysian Budget 2023

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Sheldon Fernandez, Country Manager, PropertyGuru Malaysia

We commend the government for putting the well-being of the rakyat at the forefront of Malaysia’s recovery and introducing inclusive initiatives for the betterment of the country during the tabling of Budget 2023. With the government putting forward RM55 billion for subsidies and incentives, we see that the government has recognised the need to address affordability issues among the rakyat, aligning in certain areas of what PropertyGuru had requested in its wish list.

Specifically, we applaud the government for announcing the initiative to allow first-time homeowners to be given up to 75% stamp duty discounts for properties worth RM500,000 to RM1 million until the end of 2023. This will hopefully encourage homeownership among first-time homebuyers and further spur the property market, as we have seen a dampened sentiment in the past two years. PropertyGuru’s Consumer Sentiment Study (CSS) H2 2022 revealed that this year, 51% of the respondents feel that they are unable to purchase a home without government assistance, while 69% of the respondents have indicated plans to buy a home if the Home Ownership Campaign (HOC) is revived.

Separately, we welcome the increase in the government allocation for new constructions and renovations of houses outside of the city from RM361 million to RM460 million. This aligns with PropertyGuru’s Consumer Sentiment Study H1 2022, as our respondents noted that they prefer living in the outskirts of the city following lifestyle changes and prefer more peace, greenery, better pricing, less densely populated areas, and larger homes.

Following the announcement of the targeted construction of 500,000 affordable housing units by 2025, we hope that the government will work closely with property developers to provide accessible homes for future homebuyers. Related to this, our findings from the PropertyGuru Consumer Sentiment Study H2 2022 have shown that when it comes to applying for affordable housing programs, 3 in 5 find the choice of homes not attractive, particularly among non-property owners, younger, and low-income Malaysians. We hope that the government will take into consideration the needs of Malaysians to ensure that the low-cost housing projects being built will not go to waste and further contribute to property overhang issues in the country. We are also looking forward to the housing units worth RM358 million that will be built under the Rumah Mesra Rakyat programme.

As outlined in our wish list, we also hope to see a focus on green development across the country eventually. In accordance with the 12th Malaysia Plan, more can be done to support green and resilient urban development. On this, we urge the government to consider incentivising developers to adopt accredited green certification tools to promote green development in the country and continue to push different industries to do their part in becoming more environmentally friendly.

As the leading property marketplace that has been guiding Malaysians in navigating their homeownership journeys, we look forward to supporting the government’s efforts in helping more Malaysians achieve their dreams of owning a home. We at PropertyGuru are ready to collaborate with the government and provide them with insights that can help drive Malaysia’s recovery and sustainable growth of the nation’s property market.