Posts Tagged ‘Survey’

Housing Income Index: RM14,500 income to buy house in Klang Valley

February 18th, 2014
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The Star frontpaged an interesting article today. How much should a family earn in order to afford a house in Klang Valley? A question that we all wonder about. Well, according to a survey done by Sime Darby Property Bhd in collaboration with the Faculty of Built Environment of Universiti Malaya, its….RM14,580!

The survey covered 1,529 respondents, of whom 1,183 were home owners at 12 locations: Bukit Jelutong, Denai Alam, Bukit Subang, Bandar Bukit Raja, Subang Jaya, USJ, Putra Heights, Ara Damansara, Mont Kiara, Melawati, Kajang and Nilai. I suppose the balance 346 respondents were (i) renting, (ii) not from those areas, or (iii) refused to divulge house ownership info.

Wonder why areas like Puchong, Cheras, Dengkil, Banting, Kapar, Putrajaya, Cyberjaya, Semenyih, Serdang, Klang, Shah Alam, Sg Buloh, Rawang etc not covered. Hope they conduct a second round of survey to cover these areas.

Average household income

Average household income

[image from The Star] [click on image to view larger size]

Some analysis of the respondents: 94% are married. 73% are male. 59% work in private sector; 20% are self-employed, and 14% work in government. No mention if the income is from both spouse or single spouse.

13% have post-grad qualifications, 40% have bachelor degree, and 21% have a diploma. 68% are Malay/bumiputra; 30% Chinese and just 2% Indians.  Looks like not many Indians live in these places. And seems like the affluent Malays/bumiputera are quite alot.

Quite importantly, the age group of respondents is missing. Show this info to any adult below age 30 and see if they fit into this income group. If the respondents are into their late 30s  or more, then the young adults can’t even think about buying houses in these places. 10-15 years down the lane, how would it be? As it is, our parents could afford to buy house in these locations when they were young. Read another article in the Star where Mr Gill (age 63) bought house in SS12 Subang Jaya way back in 1985 (age 34) for RM200k that took quarter of his combined income with wife. Now at age 34, what can you buy?

It will interesting to also identify the household size of the respondents. Does the average income consider the household size (kids, maid, parents, siblings etc)?

The other part of the survey covered their expenditure information. So, 12% of income goes into savings, translating into RM1749.60 on average.  How many percent can the rest of us save? Transportation is 16% (Rm2,332.80), Food 15% (RM2,187), mortgage 14% (RM2,041.20), another 15% for other loans (RM2,187), 13% for other expenses (Rm1,895.40), childcare/education 7% (RM1,020.60) and insurance 6% (RM874.80). Most likely these houses have two or more cars. How is your expenses like?

Ok, let’s look some other statistics from DOS and EPU which both refer to Household Income Survey (last done in 2012). All stats below refer to Klang Valley and/or urban figures wherever possible:

  • The top 20% of urban dwellers earned a monthly average of RM13,654 while the middle 40% earned average of RM5,294. Don’t bother looking at the bottom 40%, middle 40% already can’t own house in those 12 places (and I suspect many other places) even with double income).
  • 41% of urban dwellers earn RM5,000 or more.
  • The average monthly income for urban dweller is RM5,742. Selangor residents earned RM7,023 while KL residents RM8,586.

Looking at HIS statistics, using average salary earned by those staying in Selangor or KL and double it (both spouse working), then you can buy house in those areas. However taking into account that 41% earn more than RM5,000 and that the top 20% earn average of RM13.6k, then we are looking at a small pool of between 20-40% of people affording to buy houses.

The survey covers affluent areas, and I suspect its to plan for building more affordable homes for the those households who can afford to earn nearly triple the national average income.

BTW, looks like I can’t afford a house in Klang Valley if want to buy now.

Below is the article from the Star:

You must have an average household income of RM14,580 a month to afford a home in the Klang Valley, according to a recent study.

The study – spearheaded by Sime Darby Property Bhd in collaboration with the Faculty of Built Environment of Universiti Malaya – takes into account the current household spending trend, price of homes and mortgage rates.

It found that certain groups of buyers interested in strategic areas can have access to houses that are priced at 56 times their household income.

The study also found that this same group can afford to spend up to 26% of their monthly household income to service a mortgage.

It identified strategic areas in the Klang Valley that are considered not only accessible but have the potential to appreciate in value. They include Nilai, Denai Alam, Bukit Jelutong and Bukit Subang.

A report of the study said that houses in selected areas in the Klang Valley remain accessible to homeowners who may be looking to invest in a second home.

The Housing-Income Index which was launched here yesterday by Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan, who said the survey results would be useful for potential house buyers.

“The Index and its key findings had been reviewed by the ministry, and we find that the information is valuable as it can help policy makers and developers work hand-in-hand to build more houses that are not only accessible. but which can appreciate in value,” he said.

Abdul Rahman hoped that other property developers and the academia can carry out similar surveys in the country.

Based on the findings, Sime Darby said that 68% ofplanned housing schemes in the Klang Valley were in the accessible range.

“We intend to utilise the results to develop innovative, high quality products that are accessible and meet market needs,” said Sime darby Property managing director Datuk Seri Abd Wahab Maskan.

Household Expenditure
[image from The Star]

The Housing-Income Index was developed to gain a better understanding of home-owner profiles, specifically household incomes and spending patterns in relation to owning a home.

The study covered 1,529 respondents, of whom 1,183 were home owners at 12 locations: Bukit Jelutong, Denai Alam, Bukit Subang, Bandar Bukit Raja, Subang Jaya, USJ, Putra Heights, Ara Damansara, Mont Kiara, Melawati, Kajang and Nilai.


Malaysian students ranking in PISA survey for reading, mathematics and scientific literacy

January 16th, 2012
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The OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) arose from OECD policy initiatives in the latter half of the 1980s aimed at improving the quality of education throughout OECD countries.

PISA  is an international study which began in the year 2000. It aims to evaluate education systems worldwide by testing the skills and knowledge of 15-year-old students in participating countries/economies. Since the year 2000 over 70 countries and economies have participated in PISA.

PISA is an international comparative survey of 15-year-olds’ knowledge and skills in reading, mathematical and scientific literacy.

PISA seeks to measure how well young adults have acquired the knowledge and skills that are required to function as successful members of society.

Sixty-four countries or economies originally participated in PISA 2009: all 34 OECD countries plus 31 partner countries and economies. These 65 participants administered the PISA 2009 tests in 2009.

An additional 10 economies were added in 2010, under PISA2009+. Malaysia is one of the 10, along with Costa Rica, Georgia, Himanchal Pradesh (India), Malta, Mauritius, Miranda (Venezuela), Moldova, Tamil Nadu (India), and UAE.

PISA 2009+ involved testing just over 46 000 students across these ten participants, representing a total of about 1 377 000 15-year-olds.

The PISA sample is drawn from the population of students aged between 15 years and three months (completed) and 16 years and two months (completed) who attend educational institutions and are in the equivalent to Grade 7 or above.

PISA assesses outcomes primarily in the areas of reading literacy, mathematical literacy and scientific literacy.

Reading literacy: An individual’s capacity to understand, use, reflect on and engage with written texts, in order to achieve one’s goals, to develop one’s knowledge and potential, and to participate in society. Mathematical literacy: An individual’s capacity to identify and understand the role that mathematics plays in the world, to make well-founded judgements and to use and engage with mathematics in ways that meet the needs of that individual’s life as a constructive, concerned and reflective citizen. Scientific literacy: An individual’s scientific knowledge and use of that knowledge to identify questions, to acquire new knowledge, to explain scientific phenomena, and to draw evidence-based conclusions about science related issues, understanding of the characteristic features of science as a form of human knowledge and enquiry, awareness of how science and technology shape our material, intellectual, and cultural environments, and willingness to engage in science-related issues, and with the ideas of science, as a reflective citizen.

So, let’s see how our 15-year olds performed among the 75 economies which includes OECD countries:

Students in Malaysia attained a mean score of 414 on the PISA reading literacy scale. This mean score is below the means attained in all OECD countries and equivalent to the mean scores estimated for Brazil, Colombia, Miranda-Venezuela, Montenegro, Thailand and Trinidad and Tobago. In Malaysia, 56% of students are estimated to have a proficiency in reading literacy that is at or above the baseline level needed to participate effectively and productively in life. Students in Malaysia attained a mean score of 404 on the mathematical literacy scale. This mean score is below the means attained in all OECD countries. In Malaysia, 41% of students are proficient in mathematics at least to the baseline level at which they begin to demonstrate the kind of skills that enable them to use mathematics in ways considered fundamental for their future development. In Malaysia, there was no statistically significant difference in the performance of boys and girls in mathematical literacy.

Malaysian students were estimated to have a mean score of 422 on the scientific literacy scale. Malaysia’s mean score was significantly higher than that estimated for the lowest scoring OECD country, Mexico. In Malaysia, 57% of students are proficient in science at least to the baseline level at which they begin to demonstrate the science competencies that will enable them to participate actively in life situations related to science and technology. In Malaysia, there was a statistically significant gender difference of 10 score points in scientific literacy, favouring girls.

FYI, The top economy in the survey, across all 3 areas was Shanghai (China). Singapore was consistently among the top 5, while India’s two states were quite bad, occupying the lower 3 rungs. Other countries which were consistent in top 10 places were Hong Kong, Japan, Finland, Canada and Korea.

Below are some snapshots of the comparison tables.


Math: Science:     The full report (PDF) is found here. (caution: its a 13.5MB size file). sources:,3417,en_32252351_32235731_1_1_1_1_1,00.html

The Star says its poll on Bersih rally was manipulated

June 21st, 2011
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After removing the poll noon today, The Star says:

On Monday evening, The Star Online put up a poll on the proposed Bersih 2.0 rally on July 9.

The poll asked respondents for their opinion: should it be cancelled, or should it be allowed to go on.

In less than a day, it drew more than a million responses which caused the team to suspect that the results were being manipulated. The Star Online polls attract an average of not more than 30,000 responses over several days.

Furthermore, the total number of unique visitors to The Star Online is about 400,000 per day, lending further credence to our suspicion that there was manipulation afoot.

This could be done in several ways, for example through scripted routines or “bots” that come in to a site to perform the same task over multiple repetitions. Indeed, an initial examination of our site logs showed about one million submissions to the poll page from just one IP address.

Therefore, acting upon the belief that the poll results were tainted, we made the decision to take it offline just before noon Tuesday.

We regret that our effort to give the public a voice has been tainted by this act.


That begets the question, why not safeguards for their polling mechanism? At the very least, they should have been alerted when the voting numbers crosses certain threshold so that the administrator can check the logs.


The Star Poll on Bersih goes missing

June 21st, 2011
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Interesting indeed.  After I posted about the 1 million over votes in support of Bersih poll held by Star online, it seems the poll disappeared around noon, as per Malaysiakini report which also said that the votes in support reached 1.3 million. Readers can check the polls section  at and notice that the current poll is about RON95 ban for foreign registered cars.

[click to enlarge]


Does this mean:

a) The poll was tampered/manipulated and The Star closed it down?

b) The poll result is accurate but its not something that the newspaper wants to show?

c) The newspaper was “advised” to remove the poll due to national security or other reasons?

The ball is on The Star’s court.

1 million votes in support of Bersih rally

June 21st, 2011
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This is by far, the most number of respondents I’ve ever seen in a local poll. Granted The Star has wide readership, but still, 1 MILLION votes? Wow!!!! Even The Star previous polls recorded only 4  or 5 figure responses at times.

And if its true, definitely a very stinging tight slap on PERKOSA’s ugly face.