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Real estate still the preferred investment

KUALA LUMPUR: Real estate is still one of the most preferred investments, more so in times of uncertainties, said Zerin Properties CEO Previndran Singhe.

The uncertain global economy and the recent new guidelines on loan computation have affected consumer sentiments but investors remain optimistic about investing in real estate, he added.

“Investors are very cautious today mainly due to Bank Negara’s new guidelines on loans to rein in household debt. There is a lot of liquidity among investors but they prefer to borrow and the guidelines are hampering this,” Previndran told The Edge Financial Daily.

Nevertheless, most investors continue to look for good investments and the right product, he said.

The new loan financing guidelines issued by Bank Negara effective Jan 1 changed the bank loan computation from gross to net income. Although this may have affected liquidity and stifled property investments in the short term, Previndran believed this is a wise move over the longer term in curbing household debt.

He said while property buying sentiments may have been affected somewhat, properties in good locations and accessibility will continue to do well.

Penang will see strong investor demand due to scarcity of land on the island while the Iskandar region in Johor and certain areas in the Klang Valley including Petaling Jaya, Kuala Lumpur city centre, Puchong, new properties in Shah Alam, Kajang, Sungai Buloh, Kota Damansara, Taman Tun Dr Ismail, Medan Damansara, Taman Desa and Cheras will continue to be investment hotspots.

The outlook is positive as the Malaysian economy seems robust with the rollout of the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP) and the government’s expansionary spending, Previndran added.

Previndran will be among the speakers at The Edge Investment Forum on Real Estate 2012, titled “Investing in uncertain times” on April 28 at the Sime Darby Convention Centre in Kuala Lumpur.

His talk on “Property market overview and outlook” will highlight his views on what property investors can expect for the rest of the year, whether it is a good time to buy and where, as well as the impact of the tightening measures to curb speculative buying and household debts.

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