Affordability a big concern for M’sians settling in JB

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 29 May 2024

PETALING JAYA: Johor Baru is attracting many Malaysians who wish to settle down in the state, especially after marriage, but finding an affordable home in the city centre poses to be the biggest challenge.

High rentals in the city centre is also why many who are planning to reside there prefer to buy their own home.

Housewife Nur Diyanah Zainuddin recently moved to Johor Baru with her husband who had to relocate to Singapore for work.

“We want to settle down, especially now that our kids are starting primary school.

“The cost of renting in JB is high, with the rate of above RM2,000 monthly, so we think it is better that we spend the money to own a house here,” she said.

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The 33-year-old said they preferred a central location in the city centre, specifically near Bandar Baru Uda as it is close to schools, shops, parks and malls.

“However, the price of houses in this location is too high even for smaller ones,” said the 32-year-old mother of two.

She said that for a cheaper alternative, they had to look for homes outside the city but it will not be convenient for the family.

“For homes in the city centre, the range is about RM700,000 for a 20x70 square feet terrace house.

“Outside the city centre such as in Senai or Kulai, we can find a bigger home at almost half the price but we will need to travel for an hour to get to the city centre, considering the traffic jam.

“Good schools would also be limited as the location is on the outskirts,” she said.

She said they may consider exploring sub-sale houses to see if they were better priced.

Freelance trader Nur Alyaa Diniah Sailey said she and her husband had bought a house in Permas Jaya in Nov 2022, as they preferred to own a home instead of renting long-term.

“The aim for us is for the money that goes out to rent to be transferred to own an asset. At the end of the day, we can have our own home,” said the 33-year-old.

She added that the property is expected to be completed in 2024.

“The house is located near the river, but close to the city and near Midvalley mall.

“It is also just a few minutes to the Johor-Singapore causeway so it is convenient for my husband who works in Singapore to get to work,” she said, adding that the only disadvantage is the traffic jams during peak hour.

She added that owning a house in JB is also good for investment as it is easy to find rental tenants.

“However, we’ve put off the idea of buying another home for investment as we’re already paying a high price for rental and the progressive payment for our new home,” she said.

Meanwhile, 31-year-old doctor Ldinesh Kumar Sanjivi said he has plans to buy a house in JB, as his wife and him are both currently working in the city centre, and rental prices had gone up by more than 50%.

“Our preferred location to buy a house will be Gelang Patah, Bukit indah or anywhere within 20-30 mins drive from our workplace,” he said.

However, he said the main challenge that they are facing is high prices.

“Properties here are mainly targeted towards Malaysians who are working in Singapore so for us working in the government sector, we are unable to afford these properties that typically starts at about RM750,000.

He said they could try to find a house outside town, around Masai or Pasir Gudang area.

“However, it would be troublesome because it will take an hour drive to JB during peak hours.

“As we have night shifts, it's difficult and not safe to travel far at night,” he said.

He said for now, his wife and him has decided to wait and continue to rent, until they are able to find an affordable property that is up for sale.

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