(Nov 09, 2010)
KUCHING -- House prices in Sarawak have shot up in a period of less than a year, State Housing and Urban Development Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said Tuesday.
He told the state assembly that a double-storey semi-detached house which cost RM500,000 in May was now priced at RM600,000 and a double-storey corner house which went for RM300,000 in May was now RM400,000.
Winding up debate on his ministry, he did not dismiss the possibility that developers raised prices on the excuse that higher cost of land, construction material and oil had hiked up the cost of construction.
"This can result in medium-income people being unable to buy houses of their choice. Furthermore, it could set off a property bubble which can have dire consequences on the economy," he said.
Abang Johari said the federal government's announcement in Budget 2011 of a guarantee on down payment of 10 per cent for houses which cost below RM220,000 for first-time buyers with a household income of less than RM3,000 was expected to boost sales of the 70 per cent of the stock of houses in the state in the range of RM250,000 and below.
"It will also encourage developers to continue to build low- and medium-cost houses," he added.
On the people-friendly houses in Sarawak, Abang Johari said the federal government through Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad (SPNB) had allocated RM50 million this year to build 643 units of such houses.
"Some 451 such units will be built under the village expansion scheme at an estimated cost of RM35,540,000 while 192 units will be built under the individual scheme at a cost of RM14,423,000," he said.