But outlook for the second half of 2022 will more encouraging as developers put behind the pandemic to focus on nation building and provide housing for the people.

On March 15, 2022, REHDA Malaysia gave a virtual media briefing based on the results of the “Property Industry Survey 2H 2021 and Market Outlook 2022.” The briefing was presented by Datuk N.K. Tong, REHDA’s acting president.

A total of 124 respondents consisting of REHDA members from all across Malaysia took part in the latest edition of the REHDA Property Industry Survey. Among others, the survey found an increase in sales performance in 2H 2021 compared to 1H 2021; however, a decline was reported in launched units. Respondents anticipated the first half of 2022 to be subdued, with higher optimism for 2H 2022.

New Launches

Within the period under review, a total of 10,665 units were launched, which was 8 per cent lower than 1H 2021 (11,601 units). Majority of these units were residential, totalling at 10,631 units, priced between RM250,001 to RM700,000. In terms of house types, two- to three-storey terrace units proved to be the most popular at 3,165 units mostly located in Seremban, followed by apartment/condominium and serviced apartment at 2,909 units and 2,363 units respectively.

Sales Performance

Despite the lower number of launched units, sales performance reported an 11 percentage point increase from 39 to 50 per cent (2H 2021: 5,303 units; 1H 2021: 4,540 units), with only 22 of them comprising commercial units (1H 2021: 121 commercial units). The top performers type-wise were similar to the launched units, namely two- to three-storey terrace (2,213 units) also mostly located in Seremban, apartment/condominium (961 units) and serviced apartment (804 units). First-time buyers maintained its position as the highest number of purchasers and most were buying for self-dwelling.

Unsold Units

67 respondents (54 per cent) having unsold units reported to have 30 per cent and below of unsold residential units, mostly affecting units priced between RM250, 001 to RM500,000 and RM500,001 to RM700, 000 (39 and 18 per cent respectively). 64 per cent of respondents with unsold units cited that their unsold completed units are more than two years of age identifying loan rejection, low demand/interest and unreleased Bumiputera units as the top three reasons for unsold units.

Business Operations

79 per cent of respondents remarked that within the period under review, overall costs of doing business have increased up to 18 per cent, the highest over the past 5 years. Meanwhile, 96 per cent of respondents reported to be affected by the current economic scenario. The top three components affecting cash flow were material and labour costs, compliance cost as well as financing and land costs which shared the number three spot.

Future Launches and Outlook for 2H 2021 and 1H 2022

51 per cent of respondents planned to launch projects in 1H 2022, totalling at 24,557 units (17,969 strata residential units; 5,997 landed residential units and 591 units commercial units). Of those with planned launched, 77 per cent of them were anticipating their sales performance to be 50 per cent and below for the first half of 2022. Most states aimed to launch residential units within the RM250,001 to RM500,000 price range.

Johor, Selangor and Penang, on the other hand, will have units mostly priced between RM500,001 to RM700,000 in their 2022 offerings. The outlook for 2022 is largely neutral, but respondents are more optimistic for 2H 2022.

“While this is a voluntary survey that attracted 124 respondents from our membership base of over 1,500 and therefore will not capture the full statistics, it nonetheless serves as a useful guide and a good reflection of the sentiment in the property industry,” added Datuk N.K. Tong, Acting President of REHDA Malaysia. “While the results do reflect the challenges faced by the industry, I am encouraged by the improving sentiment and outlook in the second half of 2022, as developers put behind the pandemic of the past two years to focus on nation building and housing the population.”

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