“It is our very first step to turn our focus to mass-market offerings with affordable housing projects in Myanmar. We will go step by step to further develop that kind of development for middle class people here,” he said.
Targeting middle income families living in Myanmar’s commercial hub, the development will be built on a 55.6-rai (8.9-hectare) site at StarCity in Yangon’s Thanlyin Township. City Loft will be developed in phases, with units in the first phase to be handed over to buyers by April 2020, he added.
“We believe the demand is much higher than our ability to supply, as hundreds of people are now waiting for our public sales next month. Currently, we have opened sales to FMI shareholders and our employees. To date, around 70 per cent of the residential units in the first phase have been sold out,” he said.
“We have not set any limitation for our mass-market offerings. This means that we will continue to heavily invest in affordable housing as long as the demand is there. First, we started with luxury developments. Now, we are launching the City Loft for middle-income people. Later, we may develop more affordable housing projects for low-income families. It may take time, but we are doing it step by step.”
According to Pun, sales will be open to the general public in January 2019 through a sales gallery and showroom located within the StarCity compound. More than 2,000 apartments are offered in four styles – open-plan studio, one bedroom, two bedroom, and three bedroom. With sizes ranging from 310 to 850 square feet, apartments in the first phase will range in price between 42 million kyat (Bt870,000) and 160 million kyat (Bt3.31 million) depending on size and specifications.
All studios and apartments will be designed in line with the firm’s commitment to security, community, environment, services and convenience. Residents will enjoy various commercial, recreational and social amenities, with plans in place to construct a swimming pool, gymnasium, garden area, retail plaza and YBS bus terminal, he said.
The top executive said City Loft combines a competitive price point with mortgage repayment terms of up to 25 years, making homeownership accessible to many people who would traditionally be priced out of Myanmar’s real-estate market.
“Until recently, local banks provided limited lending with mortgage repayment terms – typically just five years. With this lack of financing and the relatively high cost of housing, new home ownership has traditionally been out of reach for most people. We are eager to pioneer in changing it,” said Pun.
“Doubtlessly, our favourable mortgage and deposit arrangements will change it, allowing young working professionals to get on the property ladder and secure their financial futures.”
The development combines favourable mortgage repayment terms with domestic banks. Interest rates are set in line with the Central Bank of Myanmar and buyers are able to make a 30 per cent deposit with the remaining 70 per cent payable over 25 years. Once the deposit is made, buyers can own a studio apartment for as little as 400,000 kyat per month.
In this respect, Pun considers the launch of the development as a major milestone not only for Yoma Land but also for Myanmar’s real estate sector as a whole.
“Community is at the heart of our masterplan for City Loft. This development has been carefully curated to facilitate modern living standards, as well as to allow an inclusive community to thrive. This is evident in the space set aside for commercial, communal and recreational areas, and is very much in line with our wider mission to build better communities for the future of Myanmar,” he said.
Nowadays, thousands of middle class families in Yangon do not possess their own apartment and this leads them to extra costs for living. Thousands of Myanmar’s young adults have an average income of more than 800,000 kyat per month, but they have to spend a lot of it to rent an apartment.
The firm aims to provide them with quality apartments at an affordable price which they can pay monthly for two and a half decades, said Pun.
“For our young and energetic workforce in Myanmar, it is time to ensure that they have their own shelter to live in. If they cannot buy an apartment now, there is no way to do it in the future,” he said.
Published : December 26, 2018
By : KHINE KYAW THE NATION YANGON