Home ShoppingPosted: June 23, 2008
Hubby and I have been house-hunting for a while, but more aggressively (read: paying visits) in the last couple of days – house hunting in the middle of your PhD?? Yeah, I’m losing my mind . I must say, unsurprisingly, that it makes me even more depressed that I would’ve been with just my research progress. So why bother getting all depressed? I thought I had my reasons:
- The price of properties in the Klang Valley has skyrocketed in the past few years that I fear if we wait till I complete my studies, we would end up not affording to buy any landed properties at all. Now, although this statement seems to indicate that I plan to stretch the duration of my studies, trust me, I’m not. From very early on, I came to realize that studying/researching for a doctorate is very different from our first two degrees so I’m not gonna lie and assume that everything will be according to plan that I’d be able to do it on time. So this is basically just in case I drag my leave a bit. If landed properties are so expensive, why not choose a condominium or an apartment? Well, not that they’re bad, it’s just a matter of preference. With little kids running about in the future, plus the fact that we both had some nice kampung background as children adds to our penchant for wanting to have some soil around our home.
- There are just so many awesome (blame ‘Kung Fu Panda’ for this word seems to stick in my vocab) new townships around now that I can’t resist a peak. I think I’ve mentioned about these two developments before, and as expected, there’s no way in hell that we could afford such places, at least not until we triple our household income. Desa Park City is a beautiful township, with superb location and natural (planned) surroundings that seem great to raise a family. However, an average terrace unit costs around RM 600,000 to RM 850,000 and corner lots reach over a million ringgit. On top of that, you need to pay some more for monthly maintenance (good-looking neighbourhood and security certainly don’t come cheap). Another cool township is the homes at Precint 18, Putrajaya. It’s only recently launched so the price of each unit is still unknown, but with a tag line “A Dream. A Lake. A Home”, one could anticipate a price that costs an arm and a leg. Daydreaming aside, we’ve decided to be more realistic and open our option to second-hand homes. Alas, the decent ones cost at least RM325k in the area(s) that we want. With those sorta price, we might as well get a brand new house… but
- .. while there are equally beautiful new developments that fit our budget more around Puchong, Shah Alam and Bukit Tinggi (Klang), they are just too far off our (my) way.. Newly built homes in Cheras are also nice and a shorter distance away but the mere mention of that area makes me see red, as in terrible and heavy traffic (jam!!!).. So to avoid future cursing by yours truly who hates long drives and massive traffic (don’t we all?), we’ve decided that it’s best to stick to living somewhere nearer. Having said that, I’m blessed to have such an understanding partner who doesn’t mind sacrificing his time, effort and petrol for very long drives to and from work (Cyberjaya). In fact, it was he who suggests that we settle down around here i.e. around Gombak/Ampang/Melati/Wangsa Maju etc. But I gotta tell ya, new properties in these areas are soo expensive -think half a million ringgit for an intermediate terrace unit. We really liked the design and surroundings of Sering Ukay but unless we want to have some part-time jobs as birthday clowns or cleaners (hey, they actually make good money) after office hours, it’s a no-no. And although houses in the second-hand market aren’t too bad in their costs, there are other factors to be considered like the age of the house (most homes in Sri Gombak, Greenwood and Melawati are over 20 years old. Now, we wouldn’t want our dream home to collapse earlier then our dear selves), the tenure (nice homes in Sec. 5, Wangsa Maju are mostly leasehold -dang), security (*sigh* with the new recent trend of gated and guarded communities, the absence of a guard house in our residence is weird. But this is just me being mengada.. we can actually make do without this, hehe..) and whether it’s too far up in the highlands (nice homes around the Bukit Antarabangsa area such as Ukay Bistari and Ukay Perdana have nice designs and pleasant surroundings but the incidence of ‘tanah runtuh’ are ever so often now that it spooks us). Guess there’s just not enough good land around here. That, and because these suburbs are quite close in proximity to K.L. Hence, they are expensive. Bummer. And here I thought where we live is quite hulu..
- I enjoy googling ‘houses for sale’, much more than my literature.. which confirms my earlier statement that I’m probably nuts.
So what’s the verdict? After our brief episode of house visits, we might end up waiting after all.. There’s some talk about the appreciation in value of homes (minus prime areas like PJ and D’sara) being a bit slow in the next few years. So if all goes well and we could save some more in the next 2-3 years, hopefully we could afford decent second-hand homes in these areas. As much as I’d like to secure for ourselves a good home right now, I think more funds will save us from making drastic (i.e desperate and wrong) decisions. Who knows, maybe we still have a chance of owning one of ’em units at Sering Ukay.. Heh.