Malaysia’s best new areas to live & invest

The Peak, March 2014 issue

If you’re looking for the next Damansara Heights, Bangsar or Mont Kiara, you’re hardly alone. The continual buzz on the property market has meant that interested homeowners, as well as investors, are sizing up the best bets to put their money down. The Peak speaks to a trio of leading experts from the property market to glean valuable, targeted insights into the next wave of white-hot growth areas in the country.

Klang Valley: Quite naturally, the Klang Valley is still best bet for living and investment. Fernandez identities its stable, large population as indicative of it being Malaysia’s number one investment destination. Klang Valley residents enjoy higher household incomes – RM7,805 as per 2012 figures – and built infrastructure over the years with more in the offing, such as the MRT. This is echoed by Ho, whose mantra for the property-hunters is to ‘follow the infrastructure’, be it the already announced blue MRT line, the possible Putrajaya and circle line, and the slew of highways in the pipeline, led by the Government’s recent announcement of RM11.5billion worth of contracts to Prolintas, for the Damansara-Shah Alam Elevated Expressway (DASH) and the Sungai Besi-Ulu Klang Elevated Expressway (SUKE).

The establishment areas of the Golden Triangle are naturally a good starting point. Tang Chee Meng, COO of Henry Butcher Malaysia, says that factors which work in the established areas’ favour is the scarcity of land and a good record of appreciation. The mammoth Tun Razak exchange financial hub – estimated at a development cost of RM26billion – will serve as a major catalyst for the areas bordering it; at Jalan Tun Razak, Jalan Sultan Ismail and Bukit Bintang. For Tang, it is a matter of time before the supply runs out, which will translate into existing properties fetching good values. Other established areas identified by Tang include Bangsar, Damansara heights, Bukit Tunku, Ampang Hilir, U Thant, Mont Kiara, Sri Hartamas, TTDI, Bandar Utama and Mutiara Damansara.

The Sentul and Jalan Ipoh nexus is also identified by Tang as a potential hot-spot, primarily because of its location at the periphery of the city centre, invariably shortening the commute into Kuala Lumpur to between 15 and 20 minutes. Recent grandiose residential projects by YTL, such as the Fennel and The Capers, provide an iconic backdrop, while the Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre in the heart of the Sentul West Park offers culture ventures a creative haven.