City & Country: Investing in real estate this year

Although it was not spared the global credit crunch, the Malaysian property market has been resilient and we see further growth.

The “stem” of the year 2010 is “geng” (yang metal ©°) while the root is “yin” (yang wood ±G). When the stem and root are put together, the sound consonance is wood. East represents wood and west metal; metal contrasts with wood. Therefore, the eastern and western parts of Peninsular Malaysia are less attractive for property investment this year. 

Development on the east coast, such as in Kelantan and Terengganu, is dependent on political factors. Thus, those outside these states do not see potential in them.Choo: The high-end property market performed well even during the credit crunch in 2009 but we expect to see it slow down in 2010. Photo by Haris Hassan.

On the other hand, there has been rapid development on the west coast, especially in the Klang Valley, with supply exceeding demand. To our knowledge, the high-end property market performed well even during the credit crunch in 2009 but we expect to see it slow down in 2010. Nonetheless, there are pockets that will do well in the Klang Valley. The choice areas for investment would be those that conform to feng shui principles (see sidebar).

Areas in the north and south of Peninsular Malaysia will perform better in 2010. North represents water, which produces wood, while south represents fire, which is produced by wood. 

In the north, especially in Penang, there will continue to be growth in the property market although some manufacturing companies are closing down or restructuring. Land for property development is getting scarce there. Other than Singapore, Penang is much sought-after by Indonesian investors. 

Johor is located at the tip of the peninsula and this is where today’s hot property development is — Iskandar Malaysia. These days, you will find that small towns like Batu Pahat, Muar and Kluang are very crowded. Where do these people come from?

They are locals who crossed over to Singapore to earn a living during the economic boom. Last year, when Singapore’s economy went through a downturn, many Malaysians were forced to return home. Despite being unemployed, these people had savings to start up small businesses like eateries, fashion accessory retail, goods trading and others, benefitting the property market. Therefore, it is logical that property in the south of Peninsular Malaysia will do well.

See the table with the 12 animal signs for a better picture of who should invest in property this year. However, this is only a general guideline as we cannot divide the world’s population into 12 animal groups.

Joe Choo is the president of Malaysian Institute Of Geomancy Sciences (MINGS). Go to for more tips and answers to questions related to feng shui.

This article appeared in City & Country, the property pullout of The Edge Malaysia, Issue 793, Feb 15-21, 2010.

Looking for properties to buy or rent? With >150,000 exclusive listings, including undervalued properties, from vetted Pro Agents, you can now easily find the right property on Malaysia's leading property portal EdgeProp! You can also get free past transacted data and use our proprietary Edge Reference Price tool, to make an informed purchase.