HULU LANGAT – The Employees Provident Fund (EPF) and its members will be allowed to put in their money in privately driven property crowdfunding platforms, which iss an additional financing option for first-time house buyers.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said EPF members for example, would be allowed to withdraw their savings to be invested in a peer-to-peer purchase.
“EPF can invest if it sees a potential in property appreciation.
“You see, properties or land usually will appreciate. One of my drivers bought a house at RM25,000 some years ago and now someone is offering RM130,000 for the property.
“Back then, you can buy land in Kuala Lumpur for RM100 per sq ft. Now, it can go up to RM7,000 per sq ft,” Dr Mahathir told a media conference after launching the Fund My Home Programme.
Also present were Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng; Deputy Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Raja Kamarul Bahrin Shah Raja Ahmad; Selangor Menteri Besar Amirudin Shari; The Edge chairman Datuk Tong Kooi On, Eco World Development Group Berhad founder Tan Sri Rashid Abdul Manaf; Maybank Group Chief Executive Officer, Global Banking Datuk Muzaffar Hisham and CIMB Investment Bank Berhad Chief Executive Officer Datuk Kong Sooi Lin
The peer-to-peer financing framework, which was announced by Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng during the 2019 Budget tabling, allows buyers to purchase or acquire selected properties at 20 per cent of their respective price.
As for the remaining 80 per cent, it would be funded by potential investors in exchange for potential appreciation in value over a period of time.
The Securities Commission has been tasked to facilitate and regulate the process.
When asked, Dr Mahathir said: “EPF members too can withdraw their money and use it to invest (in the peer-to-peer scheme).”
At the same time, Dr Mahathir admitted that he was initially sceptical of the peer-to-peer initiative, but opted to remain positive of its outcome.
“It is a scheme which can provide returns to investors in the property sector within a certain period of time upon selling their shares.
“This is truly a fantastic scheme, so fantastic that I can’t believe it. Maybe I’ll believe it when it yields success,” Dr Mahathir said to laughter.