Scientex aims to build 33,000 affordable homes by 2028

The company will continue to define its affordable homes as houses priced below RM500,000, says MD

By AFIQ AZIZ / Pic By MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

Property developer Scientex Bhd plans to build up to 33,000 units of affordable homes with expected RM13 billion in gross development value for the next 10 years.

Scientex MD Lim Peng Jin said the company plans to build these units, priced below RM500,000, on the company’s existing 1,335ha landbank in Johor, Melaka, Selangor and Perak.

“We have ventured beyond building affordable homes in Johor and Melaka to include Selangor and Perak over the past two years.

“We are confident of replicating our successful business model for the next 32,500 units to be built and are actively exploring landbank throughout Peninsular Malaysia for this purpose,” he told the press at the Scientex 50th Anniversary Coffee Table book launch in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Lim said currently the company has 17,500 completed affordable housing units with 99% already taken up.

He added that the company would continue to define its affordable homes as houses priced below RM500,000.

Currently, 75% of the company’s affordable housing units are priced below RM300,000.

The packaging manufacturer company embarked on the property sector in 1995 and has delivered more RM4 billion worth of properties since.

Lim said the company is cautious in developing any project in the city centre due to the high land price.

“For the prime area, land cost is one of the important elements (to consider). Of course, we are keen to move to the prime area but it depends on the land cost,” he said.

“We started in Pasir Gudang, Johor in 1995 with a 1,000-acre (40ha) land development and we have been gaining skills on how to build affordable homes.

“For instance, in last two years, we have expanded to more city areas like Skudai, Senai (in Johor) and also Ayer Keroh in Melaka, as well as in Ipoh, Perak.

“Recently, we have launched our project in Rawang, Selangor, so we have been good in developing landed properties and some high-rise houses of affordable houses,” he added.

According to Lim, the Sales and Services Tax (SST) exemption on building materials would result in price cuts in some of Scientex projects.

“As only certain pillars are subjected to SST, it helps to bring down the house price further. As of now, our houses are cheaper by more than 10%,” he said.

On the proposed property crowdfunding mechanism by the government in the 2019 budget, Lim said the company’s decision would be pending on the authority’s guidelines.

“We would wait for the details as the scheme also guarantees a 5% return, hence we need to look on that first.

“As we are not in the scheme, but we will closely monitor on how to deal with it,” he said.