Last week I had lunch with a long-time friend of mine who happened to want to start a real estate brokerage in Malaysia. We were having tea in the suburbs of Kuala Lumpur (specifically, in the cafes in Solaris Dutamas in posh Mont Kiara – I have been focusing on Mont Kiara real estate for some time now apart from the oddball KLCC property from time to time).
Curiously, I asked him why. He has been a programmer for a long time ever since he graduated from the esteemed Polytechnic of East Anglia (Associate College Of The Fens) with a first class honours degree in computer engineering.
“It’s simple! Being a property broker is cool. I look at the cars you drive and the Patek watches you wear and I feel rather tempted.”
I shook my head. “It’s not enough to be financially motivated, Charlie. You must want to help people. Also, Malaysia property market bull run is coming to an end already with the recent curbs by the government. I suspect the interest rates are going up, which means that the transactions are also coming down in terms of volume.“
Undeterred, Charles asked, “What are the hot areas in Malaysia property now?”
I tried to answer him as earnestly as possible. “Let me see. Mont Kiara is still hot, and we see the pricing per square feet is going up to breach the RM1,000 level soon enough. Developments like 11 Mont Kiara, La Grande Kiara and Kiaraville are showing good traction. Also, places like Seni Mont Kiara and Villa Mont Kiara, although expensive, have their own target audience. Expatriates are coming back, and naturally Mont Kiara and other places like the Kuala Lumpur City Centre or KLCC are also popular.”
“Tell me more about KLCC.“
“There’s where the action is. Property in KLCC are as good as gold. It’s freehold, and the land bank is running out in that area except for some small pockets on Jalan Yap Kwan Seng for example – in front of Taragon Puteri YKS specifically. I have also heard that I-Bhd, which is the property developer behind I-City in Shah Alam buying tracts of land on Jalan Changkat Kia Peng at RM2,888 per square feet. This is quite similar to the land where RuMa is now being built on.”
“So you’re bullish on KLCC?“
“Actually, I am bullish on Malaysia real estate for the long term. I have built the Springs Real Estate agency here because I like Malaysia’s prospects in the long run. KLCC condominiums and apartments, specifically.”
Charles smiled. “So can you take me in as a property negotiator in your agency?“
I sighed. “No, Charles. I think you would suck as a property agent. You are only in it for the money only. What makes you different from a jerk who, say, starts a property site, and then raise angel and venture capital funds, and then sold it off just to make bank?“
He cried a little, and stood up and walked away. I have never heard from him since. Shame.Follow CSRealEstate