Budget 2023: Reactions from property sector


Below are extracts of the reactions of the property sector to the recently tabled Budget 2023.

Tan Sri Leong Hoy Kum, Mah Sing Group Bhd founder and group managing director

Mah Sing is optimistic that Budget 2023 will inject a huge boost to the overall economy, on the back of the largest ever budget allocation of RM372.3bil. We can see the Government's efforts to improve people's well-being, particularly the Rakyat’s income and social protection, as well as to improve business competitiveness and value chain.

Budget 2023 revolves around three main objectives: reinforcing the momentum of economic recovery, strengthening economic resilience, and implementing comprehensive reforms.

This year, we see many practical measures which will benefit the M40 including RM100 ewallet credit, and more significantly, the personal tax rate will be reduced by 2% for Malaysians earning between RM50,000 to RM100,000 annually.

This is a much-awaited wishlist which has finally been granted this year. Not only will it make Malaysia a more attractive labour market, it will also put more disposable income in the Rakyat’s pockets, which allows them to spend on value-accretive assets like properties.

Another welcomed measure is the exemption of 75% of stamp duty on the sales and purchase agreements of properties priced between RM500,001 to RM1mil (signed by 31 December 2023). For instance, a 75% exemption on an RM750,000 property purchase will save the buyer up to RM15,000. This will pique the interest of middle-to-upper income first time home buyers as well as those who are looking to upgrade their property.

The 100% stamp duty exemption for first time homebuyers remain, applicable for properties priced RM500,000 and below, RM6,500 savings on an RM300,000 property purchase.

The Government has made various allocations homes in rural areas and People’s Housing Projects, and private developers like Mah Sing can continue to serve the market with its affordable range of high rise and landed homes. These measures would be a timely catalyst in hastening the property industry's recovery, in line with the general consensus that 2023 will be a better year for Malaysia.

With the government steering the direction, we believe that all industry players and stakeholders will work together to ensure that the incentives ultimately benefit home buyers and propel the Malaysian property market to better recovery.

Datuk NK Tong, president of Rehda Malaysia

The Real Estate and Housing Developers’ Association (REHDA) Malaysia places high hopes in the responsive, responsible and reformist agenda as defined in today’s Budget 2023 announcement in its biggest allocation yet at RM372.3 billion.

Presented by Minister of Finance, Yang BerhormatSenator Tengku Dato' Sri Zafrul b Tengku Abdul Aziz with the theme ‘Keluarga Malaysia, Makmur Bersama’, the Budget aimed to improve the quality of life for all Malaysians across all industries and walks of life, post-pandemic, and with proper and careful implementation, REHDA believes that this objective is obtainable.

We applaud the measures announced by the Minister to further ease homeownership amongst first-time homebuyers with the increased stamp duty exemption to 75% from 50% for residential properties priced above RM500,000 to RM1mil, which will end on 31 December 2023.

This will complement the previously announced 100% stamp duty exemption for the memorandum of transfer for houses priced RM500,000 and below until end of 2025.

The Government’s generosity to only impose a RM10 stamp duty for transfers made by way of gift between family members is also deeply appreciated, and is expected to provide positive impact on the housing sector.

Currently, only transfers between husband and wife is given a full 100% exemption, while transfers between parent and child is given an exemption of 50%.

Future homebuyers will also benefit from the RM3 billion allocation for Syarikat Jaminan Kredit Perumahan Bhd (SJKP) for 12,000 borrowers, which will surely provide some relief to those without a fixed income, such as gig economy workers.

REHDA also welcomes the Government’s renewed commitment for the lower income group with RM367mil allocation for new Program Perumahan Rakyat (PPR) projects in Terengganu and Perlis, and RM358 million for Program Rumah Mesra Rakyat.

Collectively, this will benefit more than 16,000 B40 households.

The measure to increase the allocation to construct and repair houses in rural areas from RM361mil to RM460mil, the increased ceiling rate to build new homes and the construction of 3,000 new homes including in Sabah and Sarawak further prove the Government’s dedication to ensure quality living and homes for all Malaysians.

The Association would like to express our gratitude to the Government for its inclusive Budget 2023.

However, we appeal to the government to consider extending the 75% stamp duty exemption to all buyers and not just first-time house buyers as it will benefit wider pool of buyers especially the upgraders.

Given the myriad of issues facing the construction and property industry as outlined in our Budget 2023 Memorandum to the Government, we had also expected the Government to take bigger measures to alleviate some of these concerns, such as the hike in building material prices and labour shortage issues which are adversely affecting the industry.

Despite this, REHDA pledges to continue our engagements and discussions with all industry players, and will still march ahead in our nation-building role of providing quality, affordable homes for the Rakyat.

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