Property
LBS Bina marks entry into Ijok with new township
Ang Hui Hsien 
The township incorporates facilities such as a community centre to encourage interaction among residents
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LBS Bina Group Bhd has joined the band of developers currently in Ijok, Kuala Selangor, with the unveiling of the first two phases of its 190.2ha township LBS Alam Perdana earlier this month.

LBS Bina group managing director Tan Sri Lim Hock San is confident its offerings in the township will be fully sold within the next six months.

“The township uses the industrialised building system (IBS) which is of better quality. Purchasers need not worry about the project not being completed as LBS Bina has never failed to complete a project,” he says.

The first phase of the RM2.7 bil development comprises 980 units of townhouses called Simfoni Perdana which are priced from RM368,000.

Lim says of these, 512 units come under the 1Malaysia Civil Servants Housing Programme (PPA1M).

The second phase – Irama Perdana – consists of 673 double-storey terraced homes with an average built-up of 1,208 sq ft and priced from RM479,900.

Metro Homes Sdn Bhd director See Kok Loong believes LBS Bina’s entry into Ijok comes at the right time, especially with a host of developers establishing their presence there.

“The project is timely since other major developers such as KLK (Kuala Lumpur Kepong) Bhd and Eco World Development Group Bhd are already promoting in the market,” he says.

He points out the type of properties offered at the price range has already attracted strong interest due to their limited supply.

“The interest is strong as landed housing is still in demand if priced affordably, such as below RM500,000,” See explains.

LBS Alam Perdana’s first two phases carry strata titles, which Lim says will meet the needs of today’s homeowners who prefer to live in a gated and guarded community.

He reveals that the company is also looking at the possibility of strata titles for its future phases comprising terraced homes, semi-detached houses and apartments.

With the completion of the townhouses and double-storey terraced homes targeted for April and February 2019 respectively, Lim says the township’s concept was modelled on the same three pillars as LBS Bina’s other township projects.

“The most successful project we have to date is Bandar Saujana Putra (in Kuala Langat, Selangor), which is already more than 90% developed.

“It was built based on three pillars – affordability, connectivity and community – which we are replicating in LBS Alam Perdana,” he says.

To encourage an active lifestyle as well as interaction among residents, the developer incorporated amenities such as an outdoor gym, jogging trails and a community centre housing a badminton court, kindergarten and public library.

In terms of connectivity, the township is accessible via the Kuala Lumpur-Kuala Selangor Expressway (Latar), Guthrie Corridor Expressway (GCE) and New Klang Valley Expressway (NKVE), among others.

Metro Homes’ See believes the new township will appeal to certain types of buyers, specifically young families and local residents.

“Single professionals might not be keen because they would still prefer to choose somewhere near the city where there is a high supply of serviced apartments, SoHo (small office home office) units and others,” he says.

However, he points out the convenience provided by the expressways and the entry of established developers such as LBS Bina which will thrust Ijok into the spotlight as the next focus area.

“The area has been neglected for some time because so much focus was placed on the southern part of the Klang Valley. Accessibility-wise, it was also considered far before the highways came in,” See says.

He believes more buyers from nearby places such as Shah Alam and Sungai Buloh will be attracted to relocate to the area.

Lim reveals the developer is looking at launching more projects next year, including another township in CyberSouth, Dengkil.

“That township will be launched earliest in the second quarter of 2018, and will also follow the same three pillars as LBS Alam Perdana and Bandar Saujana Putra.

 “We are also launching in Bukit Jalil, tentatively in January. There will be 1,360 PPA1M units and 1,342 medium-cost apartments with a total GDV (gross development value) of RM1.3 bil,” he adds.

Lim also says LBS Bina is on track to achieving its sales target of RM1.5 bil for this year.

“I’m expecting the country’s GDP (gross domestic product) growth to be more than 5.5% this year. Hence, if the economy does well, properties can sell,” he reasons.

He adds that the economy is on the right track with the implementation of national transformation plans and investments flowing in from China.

Lim says LBS Bina remains resilient despite the soft market sentiments due to its strategy of being in medium-cost housing from day one, and acquiring land bank for this type of housing.

 

Some caught in a bind

“When many people failed to secure loans due to the new Bank Negara Malaysia ruling and went for mid-cost housing instead, many developers who had bought land for high-end developments were caught in a tight spot.

“They cannot convert their land bank to medium-cost projects as there would be a loss, so they have no choice but to keep buying other land for mid-cost housing,” he explains.

LBS Bina also owns land in Johor, including 485.6ha in Kulai for which a launch is planned next year, as well as a smaller parcel in Batu Pahat.

Lim reveals the developer does not intend to acquire more land in the state and will focus on the Klang Valley due to its catchment population.

However, he believes the Johor market holds much potential and should not be underestimated.

“More investors will come in and in two years’ time, Malaysia will be different. I believe the economy is on the right track,” he says.

Focus Malaysia writer bags top prize in CIDB media award

BUSINESS weekly Focus Malaysia came out tops in the 2017 Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) construction media awards held on Oct 13.

Its writer Ang Hui Hsien won the top prize in the print category, walking away with a trophy, certificate and RM5,000 cash.

From left: Deputy Works Minister Datuk Rosnah Abdul Rashid Shirlin, Fadillah, Works Ministry secretary-general Datuk Seri Zohari Akob, Ang and ‘Asri 


Her submission, A river of opportunity, focuses on the government initiative, River of Life which was launched in 2011 to clean up and beautify eight rivers in the Klang Valley.

The article also shines the light on the progress and issues plaguing the project, as well as the property developments leveraging on the opportunities and benefits from the initiative.

In total, 12 members of the media were honoured across three categories – print, electronic media and online broadcasting, and photography. They received their prizes from Works Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof.

The awards is an annual affair jointly organised by CIDB and the Malaysian Press Institute to recognise journalistic pieces highlighting issues related to the construction industry.

CIDB Malaysia chief executive Datuk Ahmad ‘Asri Abdul Hamid stresses the importance of the media in disseminating public information on the national transformation agenda under the Construction Industry Transformation Programme 2016-2020 (CITP), which is part of the 11th Malaysia Plan.



This article first appeared in Focus Malaysia Issue 260.