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Additional packages for affordable homes are optional and not a must


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Buyers of the state government’s affordable housing schemes, particularly low-cost houses, should not be forced to sign up for developers’ ‘renovation packages’ to hike prices.

Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow said whatever additional packages should be optional and not forced upon buyers.

“The state government has fixed the prices (for affordable housing schemes, particularly low-cost housing), and developers must stick to it.

“From time to time, we do receive complaints.

“But it must be stressed that all this should be done on a ‘willing buyer willing seller’ basis. Buyers can choose to add on or not,” he told newsmen at his office in Komtar this afternoon.

Yesterday, Penang Parti Rakyat Malaysia (PRM) vice-chairman Ravinder Singh told the Penang government to put its foot down on backdoor practices that were hiking up the price of low-cost housing in the state, adding that such practices made a mockery of the state government’s low-cost housing scheme.

He said the state government offered houses at certain fixed prices (RM42,000 for two-room units, RM72,500 for three-room units and RM150,000 for bigger units).

He, however, claimed developers refused to sell at the offer prices and instead called the shots by compelling purchasers to sign up for ‘renovation packages’ that cost as much as or even more than the offer prices, charging extra for higher floors starting at around RM1,000 from 5th floor upwards and increasing by each floor and also charging extra for corner units.

Elaborating, Chow said the prices of affordable housing, particularly the low-cost housing, were heavily subsidised, way below the construction cost.

“However, some developers provide renovation packages and even car parks, which go beyond the selling price.

“Again, all this is optional and not a condition for developers to accept or not accept successful applicants (of such housing schemes). That should be separate,” he added.

Source: NST Online

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