Back to the city! That is the dream of today's executives and young families. At a time when the city's traffic is heavily congested, living in the heart of the city is truly advantageous. Clearly not much time is wasted in going back and forth to one's office or school.
Indeed, staying in the city center is a luxury and can be quite costly. Most of the land in downtown
Take Puri Casablanca, for example. This strategically located serviced apartment in
The elegantly designed apartment suites are complemented by luxurious facilities catering to the needs of international business executives and their families. One can experience the luxurious comfort and convenience of a modern city living in the heart of
Nirvana Apartments stand on 4,000 square meters of land. There will be 56 units on its 14 floors, with 11 units having their own swimming pools. PT Asiana Lintas Ciptakemang, the developer, designed the apartments in the style of premium homes that have spacious rooms and imported materials. The price of each unit varies from Rp 3.1 billion to Rp 9 billion.
Also under construction in
Meanwhile in Mega Kuningan, prime apartments have been offered since the beginning of 2008. Oakwood Worldwide is a company headquartered in the
Michael Price, general manager of Oakwood Premier Cozmo Jakarta, said that the occupancy rate of Oakwood apartments in a number of countries was at least 80 percent. He voiced optimism about business in
Kempinski Residences, meanwhile, says its location is the most strategic, located at Jl. MH Thamrin No 1. The apartments are part of Grand Indonesia, which is a super block constructed on a seven-hectare area, which is the former location of Hotel Indonesia and Hotel Inna Wisata. Here one can find the largest supermarket and shopping area, said to be the most luxurious in
The 58-floor apartment block is managed by Kempinski Hotelier, a German operator that is more than 100 years old, and is very experienced at managing old historic buildings such as hotels that cater to serving heads of state and celebrities. Kempinski Residences offer several types of apartments, from two- to three-bedroom units. The smaller unit is 123 square meters in area while the larger is 261 square meters. Prices start from Rp 1.7 billion.
The aforementioned apartments are indeed intended for the high-income segment, but that does not mean that developers have forgotten about those with less to invest as this segment consists of far more numerous customers. Downtown apartments, whether high-end or low-cost ones, are indeed in high demand because traffic jams affect everyone.
Currently developers are offering more choices, such studio apartments. Many of these sell for less than Rp 100 million each. There are also subsidized apartments, which can be found in various parts of the city. They are subsidized by the government in the form of tax cuts, money advances and low interest rates. The subsidies, however, only apply to apartments selling for a maximum of Rp 144 million. At a price base of Rp 4 million per square meter, developers often build 36-square-meter units in order to get the subsidy.
The subsidy, of course, relieves much of a customer's burden. For example, one only has to pay a Rp 21.6 million deposit for a 36-square-meter unit that is priced at Rp 144 million. The subsidy given for the loan interest also makes monthly payments lower. Instead of the normal 11 percent annual rate, a customer pays between 6 and 8.5 percent. So, the monthly payment is between Rp 700,000 and Rp 1.2 million.
When the subsidy was introduced, State Minister for Public Housing Muhammad Yusuf Asy’ari made it clear that only low-income families were entitled to the housing, which is why the prerequisites for such purchases are very tight. Many well-known developers are building this type of housing, for example PT Bakrieland Development Tbk, PT Grup Agung Podomoro and PT Perdana Gapuraprima Tbk. Indeed, their reputations are at stake because they have to provide benefits for customers of low-cost apartments while at the same time ensure quality. They also have to provide attractive facilities.
The government plans to construct 1,000 towers of subsidized apartments in the country, 50 percent of which will be in Greater Jakarta, 30 percent in Java and 20 percent outside of Java. Many may foresee economic doom and gloom with the looming price increase of fuel, essential commodity prices, etc., all of which will affect the purchasing power of almost everyone. However, one marketing director of a major developer predicted that property sales would not immediately slow down.
He referred to the country's situation two years ago when the macro economic condition was not favorable after fuel prices were increased, but the property business continued to boom. He said that the demand for property was still high and would remain so because interest rates were low and it was relatively easy to get a loan. "Next year, due to high inflation, interest rates will go up. The price of building materials will also increase next year. So, this year is the right time to look for or purchase a house or apartment," he said. (Burhanuddin Abe)