The current pandemic COVID-19 situation has changed the way most people live. Even now, many are in trouble because some had to have their salaries cut and worst of all, they have to lose their jobs. There may be some of them who have a long-planned to buy a house or real estate. According to Fernandez, 2020 had been a turbulent year for Malaysia due to economic uncertainties which had led Malaysians to rethink their plans, including buying a property and such.

If you are ready or plan to buy a property during this pandemic you have to think of all the amount of money you will need to spend throughout the buying process. Some important aspects need to be emphasized during the buying process including upfront payment including cash deposit or booking fee as well as the housing locations because it will affect the price and value of land later on.

Is Now Really the Right Time to Buy House or Property?

According to Lim, Hartamas Real Estate Group Founder and Managing Director of Eric Group, the pandemic is a period that can be a good opportunity for Malaysians to buy residential properties due to developer steps offer more attractive packages including additional discounts, rebates and furniture to attract buyers. This way you could save around 10 to 20 per cent according to their respective packages. Sound promising right?

In another way, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a detrimental effect on the residential property market as property developers were had to close their sales galleries and show houses during the Movement Control Order (MCO) starting from 18 March 2020. Therefore, as a buyer, you might not have the opportunity to visit and see the house interior and structure. Some potential buyer they might delay their decision process to own a house or property. To encounter such a problem, there are some innovative made by the developer including virtual showing the house or property program that allows the potential buyer to see the house in detail online.

Monthly Debt Repayments :

Okay, now we have seen the state of the house and satisfied with it. Without any hesitation we would like to buy the house but what about the cost? How much you will need to spend a month to cover the house loan? To estimate your monthly instalments, you can calculate by using the mortgage payments calculator. It will provide the sum of monthly payment rates including principal, interest, taxes and insurance that need to be bear along the years committed. 

Although the current purchase might be suitable for those who have the financial strength as a developer aggressively compete for attention from buyers, we still need to do a monthly and annual financial review and balance. Not to forget you will need to pay a commission called Closing Fee to the agent after all the important documents are signed which happened if you buy a property through them.

Also, do not forget the renovation fees if you want to upgrade the house up to your taste, hazard insurance as well as maintenance fees. From my own experiences of buying a house, the maintenance fees will cost you a lot throughout the years. You will need to take into account the cost of repairing the house after the warranty expires and it’s drained your pocket out. Like a lot of money. 

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What I Learned from Buying my First Home :

  • The amount of cash needs to be available to pay the deposit, legal fees and stamp duty charges for the loan agreement. But as announced by the Government during Budget 2021: Stamp duty exemption on instruments of transfer and loan agreement for first time home buyers is extended until 31 December 2025.

  • The size of the lot and the house. Do you need extra space to park the car? Or do you need the extra backyards space for your kitchen to be renovated later? Just to keep in mind all those may be a luxury desire NOT the needs.

  • The most important thing is the location. The more strategic the better. Things that need to be looked at are the neighbourhood, near retail necessities and emergency services such as a clinic or hospital as well as the mosque. And if you plan to start a family you should look for nearby school and nursery which are needed for your kids later.

  • What are the upcoming projects around the residence? If there are projects such as supermarkets, playground, hospitals or even suggestions to improve the transportation system it will increase the house prices later.

  • Consider the distance from home to your workplace. With the petrol price factor fluctuations in the market and the cost of living raising children, this is also possible to be one of the factors that you want to think about more deeply.

In conclusion, buying a house or a property is a process that requires patience and we should determine whether can afford the monthly payment, in addition to adjusting to other expenses. Everyone deserves the house of their dreams. 

With constant effort, you will be able to afford to buy your first home.