KUALA LUMPUR, March 25 — Speedhome today offered a month’s rent-free stay at rental properties near 11 hospitals in Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Selangor for Covid-19 frontliners.
Speedhome, which is a platform connecting landlords to tenants, said this rent-free accommodation for the medical staff of the 11 hospitals was being offered in hopes that they would have to travel shorter distances and be able to rest more.
Speedhome CEO Wong Whei Meng said that there has been an uptick in demand from medical personnel for short stays in rental properties in the Klang Valley.
“We have seen a surge in requests from medical officers for short-term rental, I believe this is because they were transferred from other states or are simply looking to reduce traveling time in order to maximise their recharging time.”
“In the time of crisis, we must stand together and battle this in any way we can. Every little bit helps. We hope that Speedhome can contribute towards flattening the curve by ensuring our medical frontliners deserve the time off to reduce fatigue from the work pressure in every possible way,” he said in a statement today.
According to Speedhome, the 11 hospitals are those that the government had in a February 26 list designated to handle Covid-19 cases, namely those in Kuala Lumpur (Hospital Kuala Lumpur, Pusat Perubatan Universiti Malaya), Putrajaya (Hospital Putrajaya), and Selangor (Hospital Tengku Ampuan Rahimah Klang, Hospital Ampang, Hospital Selayang, Hospital Serdang, Hospital Sungai Buloh, Hospital Shah Alam, Hospital Kajang, Hospital Banting).
To take up the offer of free accommodation by Speedhome, the medical staff from the 11 designated Covid-19 screening and treatment hospitals will have to either fill up a form on Speedhome’s website or directly message Speedhome’s Facebook page.
The details that they have to put down are “Covid-19 heroes”, their personal information and the hospital that they are serving at.Wong urged all landlords to join the Speedhome platform to provide such assistance to medical personnel, noting that the healthcare personnel were risking their lives for patients and deserve a comfortable rest.
Speedhome also pointed out that medical personnel are aware of their personal hygiene and would have received training to carry out disinfection and social distancing, noting that landlords do not have to be “too paranoid” about providing their properties for them to stay in.
Speedhome also showed a montage of photos that included Malaysian medical staff’s slogan of “I stay at work for you, You stay at home for us. #StayHome #DudukRumah”, a plea made by Covid-19 frontliners to Malaysians to remain at home during the government’s movement control order to slow the spread of Covid-19.
Riffing off the medical personnel’s slogan, Speedhome showed photographs of individuals holding posters bearing the slogan “You take care of us, Speedhome takes care of you”.
Speedhome, which said it has more than 56,000 property listings and 63,000 potential tenants in its database, noted a change of behaviour in prospective tenants recently.
Speedhome said prospective tenants are now choosing to virtually view rental properties through the use of the company’s new feature this month of “Contactless Viewing Feature”, instead of physically going to the house that they are interested to rent.
“This has enabled landlords and tenants to continue transacting during this difficult period that complies with the social distancing mantra.
“For this to work, tenants that rent a house through our Contactless Viewing Feature are guaranteed with a 100 per cent full refund if the virtual viewing did not accurately reflect the true condition of the house. This gives comfort to all parties to transact virtually,” the company said.
Today, OYO Malaysia also announced that healthcare personnel treating Covid-19 cases can stay for free in the companies’ three partner hotels that lie within a five-kilometre radius of Kuala Lumpur Hospital, Shah Alam Hospital in Selangor and Tuanku Jaafar Hospital in Seremban, Negri Sembilan until April 14.
On March 23, the ECM Libra Foundation and hotelier Ormond Group said it would provide free accommodation for 30 days for Kuala Lumpur Hospital staff via all 130 rooms at the hospital’s nearest hotel Tune Hotel PWTC with complimentary breakfasts.
The government’s movement control order to slow the spread of Covid-19 was initially set to be in effect from March 18 to March 31, but the order was today extended to April 14.
As of noon today, the Health Ministry’s statistics show that the highest number of confirmed Covid-19 cases have to date been recorded in Selangor at 435 cases, followed by Kuala Lumpur (270), Johor (196), Sabah (170), Perak (128), and Negri Sembilan (123).