JOHOR BARU: Those renting rooms and houses here are concerned that the general rise in the cost of living could also extend to rented accommodation.
Student management assistant, 35, Nurul Aisha Mohd Yusoff, who is currently renting a two-bedroom house in Taman Perling, said she and her husband went to great lengths to find a rented house that fit their budget.
“We are very lucky as after months of searching, we were able to find a two-storey house that is only for RM450 a month.
“The house has not been renovated and there is not even a gate, but it is one that we can afford,” said the mother of two.“I am very worried that the landlord would one day increase the rent as other houses around this area are being rented out for RM700 to RM1,000.
“The only difference is that the house I am renting currently is not renovated,” Nurul Aisha said.
She noted the rate for the house she and her husband used to rent in Skudai had increased from RM400 a few years ago to RM600 earlier this year.
“We have been renting at the previous apartment for about a decade, and over the years, the rental slowly increased.
“I hope that the house we are renting now would not see a similar increase anytime soon,” she said.
Preacher Yohanes Tijon, 28, is currently paying more than double after moving to a new place about a year ago.
“My previous landlord wanted to sell his house and told us to look for another place. I used to only pay RM350 for the house but I could not find another place with a similar rent these days.
“I ended up getting a double-storey house with a monthly rental of RM800 per month, which is an extra RM450,” he said.
Yohanes is also worried that the rent would increase in the next few months.
“So far, my landlord has not told us anything, but I am still worried if that happens. It will be a great burden to me since the prices of goods are high these days,” he said.
Meanwhile, Lim Sie Yan, 40, who owns several properties for rent around Johor Baru, said the reopening of the border with Singapore had caused an increase in demand for rental properties.
“When the border was closed, we had to reduce our rental by at least half. We were operating at a loss as it cost a lot to maintain the properties.
“However, demand is now high again, and we can rent out the rooms at pre-pandemic rates.
“We are not hiking up the price, but merely reinstating prices to how they were before the Covid-19 pandemic,” he said.