Mies Van Der Rohemay be an unknown name to Malaysians, but not his influence. His architectural style: Bauhaus, is the leading design in use for many property developments nowadays in Malaysia. UM Land’s projects, notably, has a very strong influence of Bauhaus design.
One of the most important factors these days in property investment is the design. It functions as a selling point especially for the concept of sustainable living. The function of design these days is to optimise the occupational value of the property.
A veteran architect who declined to be named, views design as the most important part of selecting a property, after its location. “The design defines its function as a living space; the confinement that we are in will influence our state of mind and way of life.”
UM Land’s non-landed property designsare both symbolic and definitive for investors and buyers, exemplified by SuasanaSentral, SuasanaBangsar and SuasanaBukit Ceylon. Furthermore, the locations of these three developments are very strategic and accessible to public transport.
SuasanaBangsar and Sentral are both within walking distance to LRT stations and serviced by normal taxi route. It is worthy to note that Suasana Bukit Ceylon is located within a stone’s throw away from Changkat Bukit Bintang and within walking distance to Masjid Jamek LRT station.The take-up rate is more than 70 per cent indicating vibrant demand.
All of these properties have glass and steel design with strong minimalist influence andare surrounded by waterfalls, recreational decks and pool pavilion with large garden landscapes. The design of these properties highlights the creation of lush greenery within the building which is complemented by modern facilities.
JonathanCarre, a Canadian chemical engineer living in SuasanaSentral, likes the design and its ambience. “The modern design concept really maximises living spaces, while its high floor to ceiling glass windows give ample light and warmness to the home.”
UM Land has been very consistent and conservative in expanding its development projects avoiding hotspots like Mont’Kiara, but concentrating on single-themed high-rise developments in different locationswithin Kuala Lumpur’s business centre. This is viewedas a good strategy because it diversifies the developments to cater to the middle to upper high-end property market; secondly, it avoids the intensity of building property within hotspots where the supply could be more than the demandespecially around Mont’Kiara and Damansara, and thirdly, it focuses also on the township segment allowing future valuation to build up.
Furthermore, the strong mix of township developments of Bandar Seri Putra, Seri Alam and Seri Austin in Johor, is a testament of UM Land’s focus on middle to high-end income earners. These developments must be noted for its affordability and accessibility with excellent design.
Its financial figures are however a mixed baggage, translating existing demand and sales at a slower pace. Its profitability rose to RM56.9 million in 2011 from RM51.6 million in 2010, riding on a revenue of RM323.5 million compared to the previous year of RM316.9 million.
Its profitability is dampened by the delays inPuteriHarbour and Bandar Seri Alam, and it is widely believed by analysts’ consensus that the two projects would contribute up to RM410 million in gross development value. The forecast growth from niche developments and townships would be 20 percent for 2013 and the expected results should translate into RM511 million GDV.
Fadhli Zil Ikram, is the Head of JupiterIslamic, Jupiter Securities Sdn. Bhd. He can be reached at email@example.com