Thursday, November 18, 2010

Good News Ahead?

Good news for housebuyers

PETALING JAYA: Strata titles for properties like condominiums, apartments and flats will be issued simultaneously when buyers get their keys under a proposed amendment to the current law.

National House Buyers Association honorary secretary-general Chang Kim Loong said this was among its proposals, which had been approved by the Housing and Local Government Ministry, to be tabled in Parliament by March next year.

“This will prevent errant developers from not applying for strata titles after having received the full amount,” Chang said in an e-mail interview.

He said the Housing Development Act, Strata Title Act and several other Acts must also be amended to help housebuyers who were at a disadvantage under current legislation.

He said the association also proposed that there must be separate individual titles for landed property prior to the developer being granted a license from the Housing and Local Government Ministry.

Recently, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Chor Chee Heung said that his ministry was working with the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry on amendments to the Building and Common Property Act.

Chor said that it aimed to table the amendments in Parliament by March next year with the goal of detailing the boundaries, roles and responsibilities of strata title owners, property managers and developers so that the rights of home owners could be better protected.

He added that the amendments were needed because they would spell out how home owners could exercise their rights under the Act and how many votes a home owner would have if he or she owned more than one unit in a building.

Commenting on the proposal for vacant possession and strata title to be issued simultaneously, a working executive Y.H. Tee, 35, who bought a condominium in Petaling Jaya two years ago, said it was good that purchasers would officially ‘own’ their properties upon receiving the keys.

Tee said that giving strata titles to housebuyers during vacant possession could prevent cases of developers not bothering to apply for them even after the projects had been completed for many years.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Pakatan Rakyat calls for the withdrawal of the proposed amendments to the Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents Act 1981 (VAEA Act) in Bill DR 30/2010
We, Pakatan Rakyat Members of Parliament call upon the Ministry of Finance to withdraw the proposed amendments to the Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents Act 1981 (VAEA Act) in Bill DR 30/2010.
We have arrived at this view after studying the implications of the amendments and receiving input from some of the key stakeholders involved.
We call for the withdrawal of the proposed amendments because:
1. The proposed amendments would create a monopoly for valuers in property management detrimental to 2,000,000 strata titled flats, apartments and condominium owners
At the lowest scale for calculation, owners of the approximately 2,000,000 stratified properties in the country would have to pay an additional RM3 – 4 billion annually for fees which would be shared out amongst the only approximately 800 registered valuers currently.
Even now, owners of low and medium cost apartments are finding it difficult to pay their current maintenance fee. With the proposed amendments, owners may have to pay an additional RM67 per month.
2. The proposed amendments would be in conflict with the Competition Act 2010 (Act 712) and the Consumer Protection Act 1999 (Act 599)
The exclusivity granted through a monopoly will encourage corruption, rent-seeking and “back-door” activities in the property management industry. The costs of these negative impacts would be passed on to owners with no proportionate increase in service value.
3. The proposed amendments would be in conflict with the Building and Common Property (Maintenance and Management) Act 2007 (Act 663) and the Strata Titles Act 1985 (Act 318)

The proposed amendments would take away the rights of the owners and the duties of the Commissioner of Buildings and conflicts with the duties and functions of the Joint Management Body as provided for in Act 663 and Act 318 which is to give owners the right to have the final say in the management of their own properties.

The necessary powers to oversee and regulate property management are already vested with the Commissioner of Buildings via Act 663.

4. The proposed amendments would interfere with the inherent and indivisible rights of property Owners.

Property owner who have invested in their property should have the freedom to choose whom they trust to best manage their properties and protect their investment. The proposed amendment would remove this right from the owners.

5. The proposed amendments would result in a brain-drain of property management practitioners and denying entrepreneurship.
We understand that almost all our buildings in Malaysia are currently managed by non-valuers. The proposed amendments would therefore result in job losses in the building management industry. We are already losing many experienced property managers to neighboring countries.
This would therefore be inconsistent with the efforts of the Government to attract talented and capable Malaysians working abroad to return and serve the country.
We call upon the Minister concerned to consult with all the relevant stake holders and industry players before proposing any amendments in the future.
We question why the Minister is proposing these amendments which would make Malaysia the only country in the world to introduce a monopoly solely for valuers in the building management industry and at the same time remove the rights of owners to manage their own properties.
We are sure even the Barisan National Members of Parliament would have received much negative feedback from the various stakeholders including from strata property owners and would agree with our views above.

Pakatan Rakyat Members Of Parliament
YB Sivarasa Rasiah, Subang
YB Dato’ Johari Abdul, Sungai Petani
YB Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin, Bukit Gantang
YB Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud , Kota Raja
YB Chong Eng, Bukit Mertajam
YB Tony Pua Kiam Wee, Petaling Jaya Utara

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Amendments to Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents Act

If amendments are passed, it would mean every stratified property must engage a Valuer to manage their property.

This also means there will be around RM3-4 billion annually in this fee. There is nothing though in terms of additional value or services that the Valuers can provide.

Currently there are only approximately 800 registered valuers in Malaysia.

If passed, than these amendments would have created a monopoly in the building management industry.

Watch the developments in parliament.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Valuers' Board or Not?

Do you think that the Management Company managing your property should be a company registered with the Valuers' Board?

Can owner's run and manage their own property?

Your Feedbacks and comments please

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Three-day property seminar begin 24th Sept 2010

THE National House Buyers Association is having three seminars from tomorrow to Saturday at the Mid Valley Exhibition Centre in Kuala Lumpur.

The sessions are ideal for house buyers, property investors, developers, financiers, architects, engineers, surveyors, valuers, contractors, real estate agents, lawyers, accountants, stakeholders, insurance professionals and interested parties.

The topic for the first seminar tomorrow is Pemudah Focus Group on Registering Property.

There will be presentations by the Inland Revenue Board stamp duty division director Teoh Ai Suan, Valuation and Property Services Department director Huan Cheng Kee and Federal Territories Land and Mines Office director Hasim Ismail.

On Saturday, the focus will be on Tribunal for Consumer or Housing — Claims, Jurisdiction and Award Enforcement.

The session will explain in layman’s terms the workings of the respective tribunals, common cases and enforcement and prosecution of non-compliance of tribunal awards.

The speakers will be Consumer Claims Tribunal chairman Pretam Singh, Homebuyers Claims Tribunal chairman Bhupinder Singh and National Housing Department deputy enforcement director Gunasegaran Naidu.

On Sunday, the issues that will be explored include Built-Then-Sell and Sell-Then-Build concepts, legal requirements on JMB and MC, strata titles, flaws in the Building and Common Property Act and absence of regulations, and more.

In conjunction with the 53rd National Day celebration, the session will also feature a short speech by former Perak police chief Datuk Seri Yuen Yuet Leng on Merdeka: My Experience and Yesteryears.

Participation fee for each session is RM80 or RM200 for all three sessions. An extra RM20 will be charged for registration after Sept 20.

A book titled Buying Property from Developers (What you need to know and do) by Robert Tan will be given free to participants who opt for the three-seminar package.

For details, call 012-3345 676 or email

Can defaulting owners attend AGM?

Owners who have defaulted on their payments CAN attend AGM/EGM. They could also express their opinions and ask questions but CANNOT VOTE nor eligible to hold office.

Tempers flare at condo EGM

The newly elected members of Prima Setapak Condominium Joint Manage-ment Committee (JMC) have their work cut out for them after several unresolved issues were raised during their annual general meeting (AGM) earlier this year.

“Our first order of business will be to go through all the documents from the previous JMC.

“After that, we will most likely call for another extraordinary general meeting (EGM) to discuss the issues,” JMC chairman Frankie Ang said.

He said among the issues were the stalled front entrance upgrading project and the approval of allowances by and for the previous JMC members without the residents’ consent.

Tense: A resident (in pink) who allegedly had not paid her maintenance fees being asked by Rela members to leave the EGM.

“I also just found out that the JMC may be getting sued by the management company over a lift maintenance issue,” Ang said.

The previous JMC had resigned en bloc at the end of July, about three weeks after the AGM where many resolutions were not adopted after residents questioned how their condominium funds were being used.

A total of 120 unit owners from a total of 770 were present at the EGM that got off on a heated note after a unit owner who allegedly had not paid the maintenance fees had to be ushered out of the meeting by Rela members.

Many residents voiced their grouses at the event and tempers flared before the four-hour long meeting came to an end.

The meeting ended with the majority deciding on electing three unit owners from each of the three condominium blocks.

Evien Ho was elected secretary, Frankie Pek the treasurer while Benjamin Teh, Pajan Singh, Ting Sing Ho, Ting Tieng King, Tee Hui Hong and Wong King Seng are ordinary committee members.

The condominium is located in Setapak, Kuala Lumpur and has a total of 770 units with most being rented out.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Arena Green unit owners air their grouses


RESIDENTS of Arena Green in Bukit Jalil are claiming that the management corporation (MC) has mismanaged the sinking fund.

They claimed that Arena Green Management Corporation, a subsidiary of Raine, Horne and Zaki Property Management, has not informed the unit owners on the use of the fund, totalling about RM500,000.

The residents also voiced their displeasure with the MC for not serving notice to the owners before any transaction.

Resident Ron Yuen said it was a requirement for the management committee to inform the owners but procedures were not followed.

Plenty of things to say: The residents waiting to attend the AGM.

“The residents would want to know how their money is being used and for what purpose,” he said at the annual general meeting of the MC recently.

He said according to Section 41 of the Strata Titles Act 1985, the management corporation should inform the residents on the jobs carried out every year.

However, he added that the MC had claimed that the expenditure was necessary for the management of the six apartment blocks.

The residents also opposed the MC’s decision to increase the service charges and sinking fund paid by the owners from the current 0.09sen per sq ft to 0.13 per sqft.

Yuen said in most cases owners had carried out their own repairs to their units and maintenance of the blocks was low and therefore there was no need to increase the service charges and sinking fund.

There are 1,240 units in the six blocks with the owners of the smallest unit paying RM61.20 per month.

During the AGM, a new committee was elected to look into the accounts.

The MC’s head of property services, Vijayakumar Ponnusamy, said it was only appropriate that the service charges were increased as the property was located in a prime area and this was the first increase.

“The maintenance charges have also increased as we have to sub-contract some of the work. As a company, which just took over the management two years ago, we are just doing our job,’’ said Vijayakumar.

Vijayakumar said the MC was not asking the residents to contribute towards the sinking fund but accept the increase in the service charges.

He also refuted claims that no annual report and accounts on this sinking fund was furnished.

The new committee allowed the MC to increase the service charges by 0.02 sen for the present moment.