Oct 01, 2013

    Johor gets tough on tardy builders

    INSTEAD of waiting for years for developers to build affordable and low-cost houses, the Johor state has decided to build the houses and send the bill to the developers, The Star reported yesterday.

    State housing and local government committee chairman Abd Latiff Bandi said that the move was to meet the rising demand for such houses in Iskandar Malaysia.

    "Developers who fail to build such houses will be questioned, and, if they still refuse to do so within a given timeframe, the state government will take over the building of such homes and charge the developers for it.

    "Some of these developers have completed the building of their other housing projects as early as 1990, and have left the land plots for the construction of low-cost or affordable housing vacant. Our task now is to determine who these errant developers are and take the necessary action against them."

    He added that they may make it compulsory for developers to build affordable housing simultaneously with their high-end projects.

    Property analyst Johnny Chng told My Paper that the impact on property prices in Iskandar Malaysia will depend on where the affordable housing projects are. If they are in specially carved-out areas, there will be no direct impact on existing high-end properties.

    "This should be taken in a positive light, as regeneration of an area will be successful only if there is local buy-in," said Mr Chng, who heads the international projects department of Orangetee.