Suggestion: Watch the 5 minutes video tutorial before reading this article
It’s easy to understand why Kuala Lumpur is ranked as one of the most liveable cities in Southeast Asia.
It’s developed, has great medical care, nice weather, and is one of the best cuisines in Asia. Besides, you have no issues communicating in English, which is an official language.
Most importantly, property is surprisingly cheap with prices incomparable to places like Singapore, Mainland China, and Hong Kong. Prices are on par with Manila and Ho Chi Minh City, at the same time as yields average at around 5%.
In this article, we cover the most important topics for investors who want to buy condominium units in Kuala Lumpur.
- Minimum Investment Requirements in Kuala Lumpur
- Kuala Lumpur’s Property Market
- Best Areas to Buy Condos in Kuala Lumpur
- Real Estate Agents in Kuala Lumpur
Minimum Investment Requirements in Kuala Lumpur
Malaysia has some of the most preferable foreign ownership regulations in Southeast Asia. Foreigners can buy and own almost any kind of real estate on a freehold basis, including landed houses and commercial property.
With that said, many foreign property buyers look for condominium units in Kuala Lumpur. The projects come with facilities and amenities that suit the needs of buyers, at the same time as the buying process is swift.
Worth mentioning is that each Malaysian province has minimum investment requirements for foreign property buyers, to protect local buyers.
In Kuala Lumpur, the minimum price was RM 1 million (around USD 250,000) before the pandemic started in 2020. Unfortunately, prices have decreased since.
The average price of housing is a bit more than RM 750,000 in Kuala Lumpur, around twice as much compared to Malaysia as a whole.
Therefore, the minimum requirement of RM 1 million leaves you with the option to buy a condo that is well above the average standard.
You’ll have no difficulties buying a 1-2 bedroom condominium unit in any of the central areas for this price.
Kuala Lumpur’s Property Market
Property prices have been in decline in Malaysia since 2012, Kuala Lumpur has been hit hard too. With a new government in place, the future looks a bit brighter though.
Still, we cannot expect extraordinary price increases in Kuala Lumpur during the coming time. Hopefully, the property market will improve after the pandemic and beyond, during a time when the market was affected badly.
Rental yields are still fairly high and average at around 5% usually. Having said that, the property market declined and took major hits due to reduced demand for real estate among investors.
Thus, don’t stare blindly at price appreciations, buying a condo unit in Kuala Lumpur can bring in good rental incomes.
Best Areas to Buy Condos in Kuala Lumpur
Foreigners tend to buy property in areas that have more security and other foreigners. Examples of such places include Bangsar, Mont Kiara, and KLCC.
With that said, properties in these areas are usually sold with a higher price tag, but are still affordable compared to properties in Singapore and Shanghai, for example.
Buying Condos at Bukit Bintang
The downtown area of Bukit Bintang is a popular area among both locals and foreigners.
You can find everything from shopping malls, bars, and restaurants here.
Simply meet up with your friends or family at the Pavillion, take the escalator to the 6th floor, and arrive at Tokyo Street where you can find all-you-can-eat restaurants for as little as RM 50 (USD 12).
Even if Bukit Bintang is quite touristy you also meet many locals that enjoy going out here.
One of the most popular bar streets, Changkat, is also located here and many foreigners look for condos that offer a view of the spectacles that happen on the street.
If you pass through Changkat, you’ll most likely end up at Jalan Alor which is a huge food street, offering everything from deep-fried durian and coconut ice cream to seafood and Thai delicacies.
Bukit Bintang Condo Prices
According to PropertyGuru, 1-Bedroom condos and small 2-Bedroom condos can start from as little as RM 400,000 (USD 98,280), while prices go up to RM 5 million (USD 1.25 million).
Just keep in mind that the minimum investment requirement is RM 1 million (USD 250,000) for foreigners in Kuala Lumpur, which leaves you with the option to buy more high-end or bigger units.
Agile Bukit Bintang is an off-plan luxury condominium project set to finish in 2023. Here, you’ll be able to buy a 108 square meter unit starting from RM 1 million (USD 250,000), or RM 9,260 (USD 2,310) per square meter.
Compare that to Bangkok where new condos often cost as much as USD 7,000 – 8,000 per square meter around Asoke.
Buying Condos at KLCC
If you have never visited Kuala Lumpur before, KLCC is the area where Petronas towers are located (in the Northern parts of the city center).
You’ll be able to find many high-end hotels and luxury condos in this area, with walking distance to the major attractions in Central KL, including Bukit Bintang and one of the most popular bar streets, Changkat.
Kuala Lumpur is expected to grow much in the coming decade. Increasingly more foreigners from the Middle East, East Asia, and the West see the investment potentials here.
This leaves you with an option to also rent out your property, earning decent rental incomes. A condo at KLCC can bring you RM 5,000 or more in rental income a month.
KLCC Condo Prices
KLCC is one of the most expensive areas to buy real estate and many developers build luxury condominiums here.
For example, Aria Luxury Residence is a luxury condominium project finished in 2019 where units average at around USD 4,500 per square meter.
Stonor 3 is another project built in 2019 and where the price per square meter is around USD 4,300.
Buying Condos in Bangsar
Bangsar is located in the Southwestern parts of Kuala Lumpur and is more relaxed compared to the above-mentioned areas. It’s suitable for foreign families who want to live in more tranquil areas.
Many of the people living here are wealthy locals and expats, therefore, you’ll have no issues finding high-end facilities and amenities, including diners and shopping malls.
While Bukit Bintang has Changkat road, Bangsar has areas like Telawi, having one of the best bar streets in KL.
Bangsar Condo Prices
Bangsar is comparably expensive and a popular area among expats and wealthy Malaysians. The Establishment is a condominium project finished in 2018 and where the price per square meter is around USD 3,800 per square meter.
ViiA Residences is another high-end project to be finished in 2020. Here, the price is around USD 4,200 per square meter, which is considerably high compared to average prices in Kuala Lumpur.
However, the investment requirements and higher living standards make Bangsar one of the most preferred districts for foreign residents.
Real Estate Agents in Kuala Lumpur
Some of the biggest and most popular real estate agents in Kuala Lumpur are:
- Henry Butcher
- AVID Estates
- RE/MAX Malaysia
- Huttons OneWorld Property
- Knight Frank
- IQI Realty
- Dutama Properties
- CBD Properties
You can contact a handful and see what they have to offer. You have no issues communicating in English or find a real estate agent that can offer services in Mandarin if that’s what you need.
KL is one of the most developed cities in Asia but is surprisingly cheap compared to places like Hong Kong, Singapore and the big cities in Mainland China.
You have no issues getting around in the city and communicate in English. This makes Kuala Lumpur a popular option for expats and foreign investors in Asia.
If you buy a property in Kuala Lumpur, be prepared to pay at least RM 1,000,000 (USD 250,000), which is the minimum amount foreigners need to use when investing in a property.
I hope that you found this article interesting and recommend you to read my separate country guide that explains how foreigners can buy property in Malaysia.
Below you can find some commonly asked questions and our replies. If there’s anything you wonder about, feel free to write a comment below.
Can foreigners buy freehold property in Malaysia?
Yes, foreigners have no issues buying freehold property in Malaysia. It’s one of the most foreign-friendly countries in terms of ownership regulations in Southeast Asia.
Are there any long-term visas in Malaysia?
Yes, Malaysia has the Malaysia My 2nd Home (MM2H) visa that allows foreigners to stay in the country for up to 10 years. It costs around RM10,000 for a couple to apply for the visa with the help of an agency.
How many units can I buy as a foreigner?
There are no official restrictions on the number of units that foreigners can buy. However, there are minimum investment requirements that differ depending on where you buy property in Malaysia. In Kuala Lumpur, the amount is RM 1 million.