KUCHING: The state government and Housing Ministry’s new Mutiara housing loan scheme will cater to the low-income group’s financial needs to purchase and own houses.
Sarawak Housing Minister Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg said over the past years, close to 40% of first time house buyers applying through the Housing Development Corporation (HDC) programme were not able to secure loans from local banks.
He said further complication arose when the ready housing stock provided by the government for the targeted groups were not sold due to inability of applicants to secure loans.
The basis of the Mutiara scheme comes from countries such as South Korea, Turkey and Japan which have established housing financing agencies to provide loans for their citizens to own houses.
The scheme, funded by the state and Federal Government with the support from the Finance Ministry and Bank Negara, targets applicants with a gross household income of RM5,000 per month and below.
The scheme allows inter-generational loans among family members to ensure they can afford monthly repayment. Applicants who are single and aged 30 and above are also eligible for the loan.
“The financing limit is up to 95% as we want to see some commitment among borrowers to pay a minimum upfront to secure the loan,” said Johari during the launch of the loan scheme.
Initially, the scheme is only opened for the people housing programme in Lambir, Sungai Tengah, Matang and Petra Jaya. It is managed by Mutiara Mortgage and Credit Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of HDC.
Coverage of the scheme will be expanded once additional funding has been secured. With the high demand of the loan in mind, Mutiara Mortgage may also explore the possibility of obtaining funds from the money market.