Saturday, December 1, 2007


December looks to be a prime period for investing in ready-built or upcoming property in Sabah as prices are projected to rise in the near future, according to a developer said.
Wah Mie Group director Ben Kong Chung Vui said property prices in general are expected to go up as much as 15 percent due to the increased cost of construction, hence it would be a good idea to invest in ongoing projects.
“Just last week the cost of steel bars went up by RMI 50 and we expect another round of increase in steel bar prices in January,” he told a press conference for the Visit and Win grand lucky draw at the Sabah Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Shareda) office in Bundusan near here, yesterday.
“We also have to take into account the high oil prices which are expected to go up, and also the fact that transportation cost in Sabah is probably the highest in Malaysia ... all this put together constitutes a hike in property prices.
“The price increase will affect properties across the board, so if a purchase is made on any ongoing project, you are sure to gain positively,” he said.
Shareda Propex ‘07 organising chairman Francis Goh noted that there is a reasonable level of awareness among the public on property value appreciation, based on the feedback they received from visitors at the three-day exhibition at the Kota Kinabalu Sports Complex multi-purpose hall last weekend.
“We interviewed a few of the visitors and learned that they are interested in getting property because they believe the value will appreciate further,” he said, adding that doublestorey terrace houses maintained its position as the top-selling property at the exhibition.
Goh said the Shareda Propex ‘07 was a rousing success with some 20,000 people visiting the exhibition, dubbed the “Sabah Ultimate Home and Property Exhibition”.
“We matched the crowd volume that we attracted last year when we held it at Centre Point, but we must bear in mind that probably 30 percent of the visitors last year were incidental.
“We are currently unable to give any sales figures for this year but I can say that we had very good sales. The reason why we haven’t compiled all the figures is because several of our participants have asked for a three-week extension s they can close potential deals. We will probably only

be able to announce the results in January next year,” he said.
Goh however expressed his disappointment at the lack of participation in the exhibition from Semenanjung Malaysia-based developers who have invested into property development here.
“The market for commercial and retail property is there as we can see from the good response for Suria Sabah ... they managed to get 168 potential sales and because they were the only participants from the retail property they took the entire cake.
“In Kuala Lumpur there may be too many exhibitions but the Propex is definitely unique. Sixty percent of the participants comprised developers and that shows that this is an exhibition for the developers.
“I hope in future they will decide to join us as next time we hope to increase the number of booths and host the Propex at a better venue,” he said.
Goh added that Shareda are planning to include the Sabah Tourism Board and the Local Government and Housing Ministry as core members of the organising committee for future Propex.