Friday, 4 December 2015

Why I Think Kepong 5 (UOA) Might NOT Work Out


I almost did it again. Bought into the sweet words of a property agent and book a unit at Kepong V Residences. I’m glad I did not. As you all know I have been looking around for a property. My main intention for this purchase is for INVESTMENT. And then this popped up. Kepong 5 / Kepong V / Kepong Square, by UOA.

Yes UOA! UOA is quite a reputable property developer that has been building projects after projects even before I was born. So I have no doubt about the quality of the project. If you haven’t heard of UOA because you are just a newbie like me or you haven’t been actively looking around for property, the entire Bangsar South is the masterpiece of UOA.

So far so good. Now here’s the deal: Currently it is still at the soft launch period, or pre-launch mode if you like. For a soft launch project initiated by such a reputable developer, nothing can go wrong, right? Let’s delve into it further, shall we?

Here’s the background: The project site is located at Jalan Lang Emas, next to Taman Segambut Aman. It smacked right in between Kepong and Segambut, and it is only 8 minutes off Mont Kiara and Desa Park City. There will also be a KTM station right behind the condo, which is fantastic! In addition, the construction of Duke2 Highway is already on-going, right in front of the project site.

The best part of it? It would be a MIXED DEVELOPMENT, i.e. a shopping mall with Cineplax embedded within, food and beverages, entertainments etc. Just like Publika, Tropicana, Paradigm, Mid Valley and so on. You get the idea.

There are 3 layouts and the one I chose was the middle one with 962 sqf, and its costs range from RM556k to RM620k, depending on the floor level of your choice. Through a simple calculation, you will arrive at RM578 per square feet. Not bad at all, right? Riggghhhttt?! Maybe..

OMG WHAT MORE DO YOU WANT?!

I was ready to be sold. Seriously the moment I stepped out from the UOA showroom at Bangsar South last Saturday, I was so convinced this was the best deal I had ever came across. I was merely a lazy bloke ready to be sweet-talked into making a 6-figure purchase. Costly and foolishly.

But the thing is this, it is just okay, nothing too great to shout about. I’m extremely thankful for my seniors who kept asking me to reconsider my choice. Which leads me to…


5 Reasons NOT to Buy Kepong 5 Residences

1) Mixed Development. “How can this even be a reason for you not to buy this property?! I can’t believe you just said it.” Yes, I just said it. This should have been one of the biggest, if not the first, reasons why I should not buy into this project. Is there anything wrong with having a mixed development just below your condo? Let’s see. The targeted segment was high income earners from Mont Kiara and Desa Park City, but seriously when you come to think of it, Mont Kiara has their own shopping malls (1 Mont Kiara and Plaza Damas), while Desa Park City has 1 Utama and The Curve nearby. Why should they come to your shopping mall then? No reason? So again, this project would attract mainly middle income group. Think in the perspective of the potential crime rate.

2) The current state of Kepong and Segambut. I may be a little myopic on this, but despite the close proximity to Mont Kiara and Desa Park City, I don’t see the Segambut and Kepong areas growing fast enough to become high-end locations any time soon. It would take at least a few more decades, if ever, for Segambut and Kepong areas to be pulled up to the luxury standard. Plus the current residents are mostly middle income people who stay in landed properties. Again this are just my two cents, feel free to take it with a pinch of salt.

3) KTM service 100m behind the condo. This is a good thing right? I mean, seriously?! Not necessarily. If you look at the existing quality KTM offers, it has not been up to the satisfactory standard. Not only the timing is awfully inaccurate, the KTM users mainly comprise low to middle income groups, and even low-skilled foreigners. I’m not trying to offend anyone here, especially if you are a frequent KTM user. But I am speaking objectively. Of course there is always a chance of KTM management to significantly improve their services by say increasing frequency and improving timing of the train services. Again, this is merely a chance.

4) Duke2 Highway smacked right in front of the condo. Great? Maybe not. Think again. Currently the Jalan Lang Emas is already congested. Would it be a blessing for this Duke2 Highway to come in at this point of time? Or would it be a curse to the existing traffic? Again, it remains a possibility for the latter to happen. Imagine the 3-lane Duke2 Highway converging into the small Jalan Lang Emas in future. The sight is not going to be pretty, isn’t it? Think of yourself enduring this every day for the next 20-30 years, if you bought it for your own stay.

5) OXIDATION POND is just 1km away. For those who don’t know what an oxidation pond is, Google is just at your fingertips. Basically it is used for simple secondary treatment of SEWAGE effluents. Imagine the bacteria that could potentially spread to your property. 



So there you go, my reasons for not buying this project.

And because of this project, it has changed the way I viewed property investment. The next time similar opportunity arises, I would definitely ask myself this one golden question:

“Why shouldn’t I buy this property?” 


Always make it a point that if you managed to find even one flaw you are not happy about, you shall not proceed. Ignore that flaw and you risk it coming back to haunt you in future. 

Because every agent would want to tell you only the good things, but not the downsides of it. Always, I mean ALWAYS, remember that agents would ultimately prioritise self-interest. Their earnings are based on commission and that would only come through when the deal is sealed, that is when the SPA is signed by you and you paid the 10% downpayment. 

NOBODY TAKES CARE OF YOUR MONEY MORE THAN YOU DO. 

Think for yourself to avoid making all the costly mistakes! You wouldn't want to regret for the next 30 years just because of your impulsive decision.

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