It can be hard keeping up with the ever-changing dynamics of Phnom Penh’s real estate market. However, most industry experts concede that now is the time to buy.
Kuy Vat, CEO of Century 21 Cambodia, told Post Property this week that in turbulent times like the one Phnom Penh’s property market is currently experiencing, investors see it as a lucrative buying opportunity because buyers have the upper hand in negotiations.
Vat went on to say that, at present, some real estate agents are clamouring for a commission fee higher than three percent.
He further continued, “In this situation, some builders have delayed construction projects and are turning their head toward strengthening their business instead.”
“Even though investors continue to invest; we notice that in the present situation, there are many choices for buyers to choose from rather than a situation in which there are limited options and many buyers,” Vat noted.
Thida Ann, deputy director of CBRE Cambodia, said the current climate in real estate made it an ideal time to invest in land and property because of the high probability they will be priced below market value.
“If investors have a lot of money on hand, they will have great opportunity in dominating the market, and Cambodian investors should target an average-sized market or investment if the market is in such state.” She added, “What we should look for the most in each project are quality, location, and value.”
Ann said land values were remaining stagnant because of increasing supply combined with lacklustre demand.
Meanwhile, Cambodian Valuers and Estate Agents Association (CVEA) president Kim Heang said that right now is the time to buy land and property.
“If you really have money, it’s easy to find suitable property, since there are more sellers than buyers at this point,” he said,
He continued, “Right now, people with money should seriously consider buying land and property because the price is not as high as it should be right now and there aren’t many buyers.
“Before this, you can bargain with the seller for about a three to five percent discount; however, you can now get a much higher percentage discount than what you could get previously.”
However, Noun Rithy, CEO of Khmer Foundation Appraisal, is of a different opinion, asserting that the real estate transaction activity is not stagnant.
“In this situation, buyers are still buying and developers are still developing. Cambodia is still a hotspot for investors from Hong Kong, Singapore, and from some European countries as it’s clear to them that Cambodia’s economic development is very sturdy,” he said.
According to Rithy, buying and selling activity remains unchanged.
“In fact, at the end of this year or the beginning of next year, Sear Rithy will start construction of affordable housing for people with low to average income while the value of land property keeps increasing; even when some land owners have changed their business strategy,” he said.
Nevethertheless, a recently released evaluation by the Ministry of Economy and Finance showed that investment in real estate seems to be slowing down; with some construction projects either decelerating or being delayed.