Finding gems in mature areas

Even as the dust starts to settle after the implementation of the goods and services tax (GST) that kicked in last month and the vision on the ground gains greater clarity, it is becoming obvious that while some developers are choosing to delay their launches, there are still some savvy ones who are tilting towards more positive sentiments. These developers are willing to take the bull by the horns by launching their projects to the market in these uncertain times.

Admittedly, if one were to compare the slew of launches this time round to last year, having coursed mid-way through round the second quarter of 2015, it is obvious that there are way fewer property launches now, signalling a cautious approach being adopted by most developers.

And yet, there are a handful of the more optimistic developers who are putting no stops to their launches as in the case of Trinity Group Sdn Bhd. “Investment in properties is a good hedge against inflation. When GST was first implemented in Singapore and Australia, their inflation rate went up in the first two years,” observes Trinity Group CEO (chief executive officer) Datuk Andy Khoo Poh Chye.

He says that to have a sustainable property market, it would be prudent to “control the flame but not put out the fire.” By this, he means that although it is good for banks to be stringent in granting end-financing to purchasers, he maintains that they should exercise greater flexibility in not over-tightening the loan eligibility, especially for the affordable and mid-range properties priced below RM700,000.

However, having said that, Trinity Group continues to forge ahead with its launches in confident assurance that there is still benefit for purchasers, in view of anticipated future capital appreciation on its properties. As it is one of the savvy developers riding on the emerging global trend of rejuvenation and the redevelopment of mature townships, Trinity Group is looking with renewed interest at such locations as part of its value creation strategy.

Discovering hidden gems
Mature neighbourhoods such as Puchong, Seri Kembangan and Bukit Jalil have proven to be property gold mines for the company in overcoming challenges such as land becoming more scarce and hence, increasingly in cost. It helps that connectivity has already been established with a ready network of highways and infrastructure readily in place in these mature townships.

Having already built a solid reputation for carving a niche in terms of “bringing affordable luxury living” to its buyers, it is also looking for hidden gems in mature townships and is not oblivious to the fact that there is much potential in these neighbourhoods. “We launched The Zest @ Kinrara 9 in Bandar Kinrara, Puchong, six years ago and Zeva @ Equine South in Puchong South, Seri Kembangan, and Z Residence in Bukit Jalil three to four years ago and prices there have since doubled. I see KL South representing Puchong, Seri Kembangan and Bukit Jalil as unpolished gems waiting to be discovered. In fact, if you look at the wave of properties launched some five to seven years ago in these locations, you will see that property prices have since doubled,” he observes.

Zeva @ Equine South, which is spread across 3.7 acres and expected to be completed in June, has a gross development value (GDV) of RM282mil. Being the first-of-its-kind, integrated development in Seri Kembangan comprising 446 serviced apartment units and 320 studio units (ranging between 454 sq ft and 1,536 sq ft) with 12 shops and boutique retail units occupying a total gross area of over 250,000 sq ft, about 95% of its units have already been sold.

The growth potential for this development is expected to be high as its location provides ideal connectivity to Cyberjaya, Putrajaya and even to the city via Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong (LDP), South Klang Valley Expressway (SKVE), Besraya Highway (Besraya), Maju Expressway (MEX), North-South Expressway (PLUS) as well as the proposed Serdang-Kinrara-Putrajaya Expressway (SKIP) and Kinrara Damansara Expressway (Kidex).

Its close proximity to upcoming infrastructure, such as the LRT station (Ampang Line) and the proposed MRT Line 2 (Taman Sri Serdang), further helps to maximise capital appreciation and rental yield.

“We foresee much future potential in these areas due to the infrastructure (upgrades) and other upcoming facilities. On the other hand, parts of Seri Kembangan/Puchong South which were once rubber and oil palm estates have today been transformed into thriving townships surrounded by popular hotspots which include shopping malls, hypermarkets, educational hubs and a host of eateries, food joints and restaurants, financial institutions and places booming with commercial activities.

“Even property expert Ho Chin Soon recommends Zeva as having the potential to rise in value appreciation within the first-tier radius of the investment centre of gravity of Greater Kuala Lumpur,” he maintains.

Trinity Group’s The Zest @ Kinrara 9 development in Puchong with a GDV of RM250mil that was launched in 2009 comprising serviced apartments with an average built-up area of 1,205 sq ft also recorded good capital appreciations, showing an increase from its original selling price of about RM276,888 hovering at RM230 per sq ft to around RM675,000 in terms of its sub-sale price or approximately RM560 per sq ft.

Trinity Group’s innovative integrated marketing approach ascertains upcoming trends to set it on the cutting edge of new concepts to enhance the lives of its purchasers and the community at large. It is for this reason that as a niche boutique developer, its ability to stay agile has enabled it to venture into the mature neighbourhoods of Puchong, Seri Kembangan and also Bukit Jalil in a quest to unlock the potential of the land.

In Bukit Jalil, it unveiled its freehold Z Residence @ Bukit Jalil development comprising 1,136 condominium units with built-up areas ranging between 1,032 sq ft and 1,407 sq ft spread across 6.7 acres. The development that has a GDV of RM580mil, which was completed on scheduled in June last year, achieved a capital appreciation of 168% as of January 2015 compared to its launch in 2011.

Commenting on the key catalysts taking shape in mature townships such as Bukit Jalil in terms of redevelopment and rejuvenation, he anticipates property prices in this mature precinct to appreciate. This is a far cry from the early days whereby Bukit Jalil was once a secondary jungle.

“Today, Bukit Jalil has grown into a bustling township with key amenities and conveniences located in the established neighbourhood. Furthermore, with the upcoming Pavilion 2 in Bukit Jalil, the mall will bring new excitement and a fresh alternative, which will attract a large catchment area that will bring up the value of the surrounding properties. This will transform the classic high-rise residential area into a shopping hub,” he says drawing a parallel to Mont’ Kiara some 10 years ago, which has transformed from a lush jungle park to an affluent township.

Having just launched Trinity Aquata KL South in the suburban enclave of Sungai Besi on approximately 3.58 acres following an overall water theme, he says the fact that it is a KL address and freehold, and being located in close proximity to Puchong holds the development in good stead for capital appreciation.

He extols the fact that this development bears a KL address with good connectivity. Already, another project is being planned for kick-off in the first quarter of next year comprising serviced apartments in Serdang that will be located near the new station in Puchong.

Pride of Puchong South
Another developer which has also ventured further to develop its project is Titijaya Land Bhd.

3Elements @ Puchong South, developed by its subsidiary Safetags Solutions Sdn Bhd encapsulates the ideal work-live-shop lifestyle in a city experience located in one of the most happening areas in Puchong South. Touted as one of the most innovative mixed developments set on 6.3 acres of prime land in Puchong South, it is strategically located in the rapidly developing commercial zone of Puchong South adjacent to Seri Kembangan and Putrajaya.

The mixed-development with a total GDV of RM429mil comprises four- and six-storey shop offices, two towers, flexi suites and serviced apartments.

“The two office towers were designed to face the main road for maximum exposure while the serviced apartments are located further away from the main road for privacy and security,” says Titijaya executive director Charmaine Lim of this project that was launched two years ago and which is currently under construction.

Since its launch in 2012 with the flexi suites being priced at approximately RM508 per sq ft, the average unit is now valued at approximately RM555 per sq ft.

Sharing her take on this huge growth area that is waiting to explode, she believes that the previous perception of Puchong being located far away has now been shed thanks to the rapid progress of infrastructure.

“Puchong South is a good address. It is very well-developed so we decided to venture further to Puchong South in Seri Kembangan to meet the needs of people who could not get a property there. Instead of being in the center of Puchong which is already developed, those who have purchased our flexi suites at more affordable prices now have the address they want while enjoying the conveniences and amenities in this area, not to mention benefiting from the easy accessibility here,” she says.

Besides that, she says that the infrastructure connected to the highways such as MEX extending to other parts of the Klang Valley and Selangor and onward to Subang Jaya, Klang and Petaling Jaya makes its location in Seri Kembangan more easily accessible while being situated near Putrajaya and Cyberjaya. - By The Star