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Developers: We agree licences should be revoked
28/01/2005 Daily Express
Kota Kinabalu: The Sabah Housing and Real Estate Developers Association (Shareda) agreed that if developers fail to deliver their obligation to house buyers their licences should be revoked.

Its Chairman, Haji Abu Bakar M. Yahya, said the association wants only trustworthy developers to serve the public.

He said this in response to Local Government and Housing Assistant Minister, Edward Yong Oui Fah, who warned housing developers that if they fail to rectify house buyers' complaints their licences will not be renewed.

"If the developers have proven they failed to deliver their responsibility despite being reminded, their licences should be revoked," he said in a press conference before launching the Chinese New Year Property Fair 2005, here, Thursday.

Yong had said that the Ministry is empowered to take punitive measures against any developer who ignored buyers' complaints.

He said under the housing by-laws, developers are required to renew their licences every year and in the event they fail to attend to the buyers' complaint, the Ministry can blacklist the company, including the directors.

However, before action is taken against the developer, they would normally be given the opportunity to rectify the defects in their products.

Meanwhile, Abu Bakar said every developer should strive to give house buyers money-for-value products.

He said with the exception of one or two players in the industry, the rest, who are mostly Shareda members, are serious developers.

"These are professionals who have been in the industry for a long time and I have been telling them they have to be better simply because there's a demand for them to provide better products," he said.

He said the developers have an obligation to provide quality end products with good design and workmanship.

Noting that some buyers are notably dissatisfied with the prices of properties in the market, Abu Bakar said there is a wide range of products that are available for them to choose from.

"Some of the houses or apartments may seem smaller but in terms of absolute pricing they are relatively cheaperÉbut then again it all depends on the affordability of the buyer," he stressed.

Property buyers, he said, are getting smarter and choosy, which explains the grouses that have been cropping up.

Currently, there are about 160 developers throughout Sabah, with half of them being active industry players, he said.

On price increases, Abu Bakar said the situation is unavoidable since building materials such as steel, brick and sand, among others, have also considerably gone up.

This, he said, is posing a challenge to the industry to keep managerial cost to minimum so as not to affect property prices from skyrocketing.


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