PETALING JAYA (Nov 6): The days of living in poor conditions are numbered. Those from the lower-income group can rejoice as the government will be allocating some RM1.2 billion for the construction of comfortable and quality housing come next year.

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With the tabling of Budget 2021 today as presented by Finance Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz, out of the RM1.2 billion:

- RM500 million will be utilised to build 14,000 low-cost housing units under the People's Housing Program (PPR);

- RM315 million for 3,000 units of Rumah Mesra Rakyat built by Syarikat Perumahan Negara Berhad (SPNB);

- RM125 million for maintenance of low and medium-low cost strata-housing and also in repairing dilapidated houses and those damaged by natural disasters;

- RM310 million for the Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Programme (PPAM)

Here are what the industry experts have to say about this initiative:

Datuk Soam Heng Choon, president, Rehda Malaysia

We believe that the various recipients of this allocation namely the PPRs, SPNB’s Rumah Mesra Rakyat and PPAM will provide the much-needed relief for those in need.

Datuk Khor Chap Jen, president and CEO, S P Setia Bhd

We applaud the efforts of the government to help those who are in the B40 category to own a home. Also, we hope that the government will consider to take over the responsibility to build affordable housing for the B40 as this will enable a more cohesive, consistent and efficient macro implementation and results; while the developers can concentrate fully on the free market housing.

Tang Chee Meng, COO, Henry Butcher Malaysia

I have hoped that the Budget would introduce more measures to stimulate the soft property market. However, I guess the government probably finds it difficult to find sufficient funds to allocate to the industry besides focusing on building more low cost and affordable housing for the B40 group.

Foo Gee Jen, CBRE | WTW group managing director

RM1.2 billion has been allocated for development of affordable housing and the Government is collaborating with financial institutions to finance Rent-to-Own Schemes totaling 5,000 units worth more than RM1 billion. This will partly address the current problems of affordable housing facing B40 and M40 families.

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