PETALING JAYA: Shares in several developers of mainly high-end properties touched one-year highs this week on rising interest in premium properties.
On Wednesday, Mah Sing Group Bhd’s shares closed at 12-month high of RM3.86 while KLCC Property Holdings Bhd ended at a year’s high of RM3.22.
Yesterday, Sunrise Bhd and E&O Property Development Bhd (E&O Prop) closed at 52-week highs of RM2.22 each.
An analyst at a bank-backed brokerage noted that these companies were doing better than the rest in terms of pick-up rates for their developments.
“Investors’ picks are likely to be mid- to high-end property developers as this segment will continue to do well,” she said, adding that the strengthening of the ringgit also resulted in foreign managers’ re-allocating their assets to Malaysia.
Aseambankers analyst Ong Chee Ting noted that the relaxation of Foreign Investment Committee (FIC) ruling on foreign property ownership last year would bode well for high-end developers.
Malaysia’s high-end residential properties, he said, were seen as cheaper than those in the region.
While more property players were jumping onto the bandwagon to take advantage of the positive sentiment in high-end developments, location and brand name were still important factors to buyers, Ong said.
“Areas like Bangsar and Hartamas are still attracting strong demand,” he said, adding that companies like Sunrise, Mah Sing, E&O Prop and Sunway City Bhd were expected to benefit from the positive feelings.
E&O Prop managing director Datuk Terry Tham Ka Hon pointed out that real estate investors tended to favour premium properties in prime locations.
Property prices in Malaysia had lagged considerably compared with region's, even in Kuala Lumpur and other key urban centres, notably Penang Island and Johor Baru, he told StarBiz recently.
“The fact that Malaysian properties are grossly undervalued is an investment opportunity that many are beginning to wake up to,” he said, adding that there was ample liquidity in the local and global markets.
“In terms of demand, Malaysia’s population is young and fast growing, and good infrastructure is facilitating further development and urbanisation,” Tham said, adding that E&O Prop would continue to focus on the premium segment.
Recently, too, United Malayan Land Bhd (UM Land) proposed to build a 191-unit condominium with facilities in Bangsar.
The project is expected to commence in the second half of this year and to be completed by 2010.
“With properties in Bangsar enjoying strong and sustained demand from both locals and expatriates, the development is expected to perform well,” UM Land group chief executive officer Anthony Yap said in the statement.