Kuala Lumpur

Beginner's guide
to buying property.

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Section 1

Set a budget.

Your debt service ratio
This is the total of all outstanding loans (personal, minimum credit card payments, car, etc) against your total income. It determines how much you can borrow from the bank, or at all. In Q1 2017, Bank Negara Malaysia reported that 42% of approved loans have debt service ratios of less than 40%.

 

Your monthly commitment
Rule of thumb: allocate no more than a third of your take home pay for your home loan repayment.

 

Additional costs and fees
On top of the downpayment (usually 10% with a 90% margin of finance) you will have to allocate about another 10% for legal fee, stamp duty, etc. Properties with commercial titles, often including SoHo units, are subject to 6% GST.

 

Subsequently, there could be on-going costs, such as maintenance fee and sinking fund.

Section 2

Finding a middle ground.

Kuala Lumpur is the capital city of Malaysia, and has one of the best infrastructures in the region, attracting local and multi-national residents. Property prices at the city centre is of course the highest in Malaysia, ranging from RM1,200 to RM1,800 per sq. ft. The Light Rail Transit and Mass Rapid Transit systems facilitating transport to Greater Kuala Lumpur has opened up a host of other property hotspots at more affordable prices, such as Mont Kiara, Dutamas and Cyberjaya.

 

There are certainly trade-offs on location and space when having a limited budget. Choose the best location within your means, and also what works best in the long-term. First time buyers often make decisions based on current needs but these change over time. Some long-term factors that could influence your decision are:

 

  • Do you plan to have children? Then having schools and parks nearby would be convenient.
  • Do you have a growing family? Then you need more space which you can get in less developed areas, but would require longer daily commutes.
  • Is this an investment asset/rental property? Then rental yield and ease of finding tenants are important. A Real Property Gains Tax is imposed if you intend to dispose of the property within five years of acquisition.
  • Is there growth potential? The location might not be prime today, but could become so in five to ten years.
Section 3

Browse and shortlist property listings.

If you are considering a new, off-plan development, make sure that the developer has a good track record of delivering quality construction and finishing, in a timely manner. Since you cannot view the actual unit before purchasing, consider the following:

 

  • What is the unit’s orientation;
  • If there is no show unit, imagine walking in the layout—where are the walls, windows and doors? Does it flow well from one space to another?
  • Is the unit removed from noise sources, such as the lifts, water tank and intermediate pump room;
  • Where is the car park;
  • What facilities does it have to offer?

Start with our search engine to explore what UEMS has to offer.

Section 4

Compare prices.

Check out transacted prices of similar units similar properties in the vicinity (for new developments) or within the same property (for sub-sale). For sub-sale properties, this will help you negotiate a fair price that is close to its valuation price; in the next step of applying for a loan, the bank will use the valuation conducted by a licensed valuer to determine the loan amount.

Section 5

Consider alternative home ownership solutions.

If you are a young homebuyer or are uncertain about your future needs and commitments, then UEM Sunrise’s EASY Own Plan offers alternative solutions to make home ownership more flexible and easily attainable.

 

Under the EASY Own Plan, UEM Sunrise offers a rent-to-own programme for selected properties, allowing our customers to move into their dream home at a dream location, and reside there while considering purchasing it:

 

  • Customers enter into a 24-month tenancy agreement and may, within that period, exercise the option to buy the home at an earlier "locked price";
  • Besides the monthly rental, a deposit of 2.5 per cent of the gross sale price is required at the start of the tenancy:
    • If the customer opts to buy the home, the deposit will be deemed as part of the payment.
    • If the customer opts to not buy the home, the tenancy continues until the end of the tenancy period and the deposit—less the amount required to "make good" the home, outstanding utility bills, etc.—will be returned to the customer.

In Kuala Lumpur, the rent-to-own programme is presently available for UEM Sunrise’s Verdi development, an award-winning eco-dominium in the lush Symphony Hills neighbourhood.

Section 6

Make an offer.

For new developments, you will have to pay a booking fee to the agent. Make sure that your deposit/booking fee is refundable if you are unable to obtain a home loan or the valuation is much lower than the purchase price.

 

Section 7

Apply for a loan.

Shop around for a bank that can offer you the best interest rate and terms. Factors to consider:

 

  • Traditional (fixed amount) vs Flexible (reduce interest by saving money in the linked current account)./li>
  • Interest rates.
  • Margin of financing: the maximum is usually 90%; the remainder 10% comes out of pocket.
  • Lock-in period: the period during which a penalty will be charged (usually 2% or 3%) if you pay off the loan before the end of the tenure.

Get approval for your loan before the next step.

 

UEM Sunrise further offers EASY Financing by assisting buyers in narrowing the gap between the loan amount attained from the end-financier and the home purchase price.

 

  • For a deposit from as low as RM5,000, buyers are able to start the process of obtaining a dream home built by UEM Sunrise;
  • Buyers need only to obtain a loan of at least 60 per cent from an end-financier;
  • UEM Sunrise offers financial loan of up to 30 per cent to make up the balance of the purchase amount.
Section 8

Delivery of Vacant Possession.

Vacant possession means that the property is in a state fit for occupancy.

 

  • For new residential developments, developers have to deliver the vacant possession within 24 months for landed properties and 36 months of high-rise stratified buildings.
  • For sub-sale, it has to be done between 3 to 5 days after payment for the property has been made in full.
Section 9

Get the keys to your new home.

After the bank disburses the remainder of the loan, pay the legal fees and stamp duty.

 

Your lawyer will arrange for the handover of the keys. Inspect the property to ensure that it is in the agreed condition, and that all maintenance and utilities fees up until the handover date have been cleared.

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