PETALING JAYA: Buyers want more recreational facilities to be included in their housing projects.
“Environment and lifestyle now play an important role in their decision-making process.
“The days when landlords just wanted a roof over their heads are over,” said the chairman of the Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents, Chan Ai Cheng.
The three main facilities that buyers would look for are a swimming pool, a well-equipped gymnasium and a playground, according to Chan.
In a gated and guarded community, buyers also want security, walking and biking trails, and extensive landscaping for that “resort feel,” she said.
In a high-rise development, extensive facilities including rooftop gardens, car parks, impressive entrances and lift lobbies are highly sought after.
To impress buyers, developers are building new and improved facilities.
“Developers are setting a new standard in terms of the number of facilities in a development.
“They are key to attracting future owners and as such, developers would do anything to impress buyers,” she said.
However, Chan said the leisure facilities might not be enough, especially for teenagers who need more space for games and sports.
In the city, there is a problem of space due to the high cost of land, she said.
“This is where gaming centers could come in.
“The centers could house tennis or badminton courts, swimming pools and other activities under one roof,” Chan said.
Acting President of the Malaysian Real Estate and Property Developers Association (Rehda), Datuk NK Tong, said: “There is a trade-off between providing more facilities and making homes more affordable.”
Tong said equipment also has maintenance costs.
“We don’t want to install something that’s too expensive to maintain,” Tong said, adding that open green spaces have remained a popular requirement among homebuyers.
“Trends change all the time, but for young families, open parks are always very popular,” he said.
For land development, developers are required by authorities to provide parks, but there are also larger township developers who go the extra mile by providing additional facilities, he said.
For development in city centers such as Kuala Lumpur, Tong said there are many public amenities such as KLCC Park, Perdana Botanical Garden and Titiwangsa Park.
“Our parks are generally not crowded and the recreational facilities are there for people.
“Our cities have no shortage of green and open spaces, so it’s up to people to take advantage of them,” he said.