Mainland properties continue to be the most transacted in Penang for the first half of last year (H1 2021) despite the movement control order impacting the volume of transactions.
Ayer Itam and Jelutong are the only island locations to appear in Penang’s top five transacted areas in H1 2021, and have regularly ranked in the charts since 2016.
Bukit Mertajam, with 168 transactions, has remained the most transacted area for residential properties since 2016, and ranks top among first home buyers (FHBs) and investors.
Terrace houses were the most popular property type in Bukit Mertajam with a median price of RM372,500, followed by flats with a median price of RM70,000.
Butterworth, the closest town to Bukit Mertajam, emerged second-most transacted in Penang for the first half of last year.
Simpang Ampat, Ayer Itam and Jelutong ranked third, fourth and fifth, respectively.
In terms of median prices, Butterworth recorded the most drastic growth, with 50.48% in the first half of last year compared with the same period the year before.
Given that the volume of transactions in Butterworth reduced from 176 in H1 2020 to only 87 in the same period last year, the dramatic increase in median prices could be attributed to the purchase of larger and more expensive properties.
On the other end of the spectrum, Simpang Ampat was the only location among the top five areas to record a negative change in median prices in H1 2021.
High-rise preference in Penang
While landed properties have consistently been the most favoured in Malaysia, Penang is an exception. Residential transactions there were balanced between high-rises (50.9%) and landed properties (49.1%) in H1 2021.
Terrace houses were nevertheless the most popular property type this half, followed closely by flats and condominiums or apartments, which outnumber landed properties via transaction volume.
Transactions for H1 2021 were also nearly balanced between investors (48%) and FHBs (52%). The marginal difference in FHBs and investors when compared with other key states shows that investors were most interested in Penang’s properties.
The data, however, is unable to indicate what investors aim to do with their properties, be it for rental or their own stay.
But Penang has consistently been named among the best places in the world to retire in by international travel magazines, and last year was ranked the third-best island in the world for retirement by “International Living”.
Hence, the possibility of investors looking to retire in Penang could be a strong factor behind the number of purchases.
This article was written by Vigneswar Rajasurian of PropertyAdvisor.my, Malaysia’s most comprehensive source of property data, property analytics and insights.