KUALA LUMPUR, July 14 — The property sector is expected to do better in the second half of 2018 (2H18), opposing the general perception of the bearish property sector, as the knee-jerk reaction due to 14th General Election subsided, Axis Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) Head of Investments Siva Shanker said.
He said the total transactions improved by 4 per cent in January and February this year.
“Market hibernated around election time as people took a wait-and-see approach and the later euphoria of the election caused the market to go into a celebratory mood and as I talked to property agents, they said there are more viewings and enquiries now.
“For 2H18 and 2019, we will see the market begin to level out and start its upward trend again, contradicting the gloomy 2017, which saw transactions at the bottom of the “U” curve,” he told the audience at the “Property Outlook 2018 and Beyond: What now?” session.
The session was part of the 4th Affin Hwang Asset Management Investment Forum held here today.
He elaborated that despite higher household debt, residential loan applications improved by 15 per cent, while the amount of loan approved increased by 15.9 per cent.
“However, the ratio of approvals and applications stood at 42.3 per cent,” he said, adding that the number could be improved.
He said that more efforts should be taken to address the issue of first-time house buyers, which in a way, could be addressed via easy lending and more affordable housing projects.
“There is no such thing as oversupply of affordable houses, it is under supply and we have to define what affordable is as it varies from one developer to another,” he explained.
Shanker also said the residential units reportedly facing an oversupply issue were those priced between RM500,000 and RM1 million, as well as those in the small or home office (SOHO) and small office/flexible office (SOFO) segment.
Apart from it, he said that the market should start offering alternative asset classes investment, which include commercial buildings, as it would soon become popular among investors.
“This would give opportunity for millennials to buy a house while investors can still invest,” he said. — Bernama