This post was guest blogged by Doug Pierce from Kuala Lumpur Property
The spotlight is on the Malaysia property market and its recent reforms. Direct investment in Asia-Pacific property totalled some $100 billion last year, up 40 percent from a year earlier, according to property consultants Jones Lang LaSalle. Malaysia wants to grab as much as it can out of this year’s inflow. For foreigners buying homes abroad, can Malaysia make it to the forefront?
A Nod from the FIC No Longer Needed
Malaysia already has the advantages of a free market economy, land ownership registration based on Australia’s Torrens system, and courts based on English common law. The government wants to make it even easier and cut red tape to encourage foreign investment. Today any foreigner who wants to buy property worth more than RM250,000 no longer requires the approval of the Foreign Investment Committee (FIC), a process that overwhelmed many would-be investors as it was time-consuming and complex and was done away with last 21 December 2006.
Property ownership in Malaysia
Going, Going, Gone – Real Property Gains Tax
Investors no longer have to pay the Real Property Gains Tax. Not an April’s Fools’ Joke, as of April 1st 2007, the only capital gains tax in Malaysia, the Real Property Gains Tax, was abolished. A burden to property owners who wanted to sell their home, you no longer have to go through the process and now get to keep more money in your pocket.
Sun, Sand, and Malaysia My Second Home Retirees Equals Profit
While most international investors look solely to the capital city Kuala Lumpur real estate market, property investment opportunities can also be found in the North Western island resorts where many second homers seek an exotic overseas home in the sun. The gorgeous island of Penang or the resort city Port Dickson are where strong short term rental rates and annual returns can be impressive.
“In Malaysia,” explains Darien Bradshaw of Colliers International Real Estate, “you’ve got a government that’s really trying to improve the environment for people looking to invest in the country.” This commitment to raising the profile of their nation internationally is what makes Malaysia an exciting and potentially very lucrative place to buy property.