Home Sweet Home

Today 30th May 2010 marks a historic point in my family's life when we finally moved into our very own home at Casa Riana apartment in Taman Puncak Jalil, Seri Kembangan. After weeks of preparation, we moved in this morning with the help of the 3 movers guys plus my 2 brother in laws. Thank you everyone who made this happen - my lovely wife, my parent, family, relatives, employer, friends, our real estate agent Mr. Lim and of course Allah The Al-Mighty for His blessings and generosity.
It all started late last year around December when we thought of moving away from our rented place at Taman Universiti Indah. While searching for a better place to live, we thought why don't we buy a house instead. At least we'll be paying for our own home. So we looked high and low in Seri Kembangan, Puchong, Serdang, Putrajaya, Bangi and even Sepang for a house that is nice, suits our budget and strategically located for both of us. In the process we kept passing by this newly finished apartment in Puncak Jalil which caught our attention called Casa Riana. To cut the story short, we searched around the Internet and the many for-sale ads around the place, got in touch with Mr Lim, agreed with the 115K price and started the ball rolling to purchase our future home.

One thing for sure, buying a house proved to be a really expensive and lengthy process for us. First we paid RM500 as booking money to the agent so that he can get the owner to agree for the proposed sale price and sign the offer letter. After that we paid the remaining 2.8% of the house price (around RM3,400) with our own pocket money. Lucky for us the owner kindly agreed to wait until we got the EPF withdrawal money for the remaining 8% of the house' price.

The EPF withdrawal was surprisingly an easy and quick process which took just over a week. The house loan and legal process though took months, 5 months to be exact. Either it is always that long or we got a really lousy loan officer and legal firm because a neighbour of mine here moved into his house in about a month's time. Anyway, after securing our loan (which the bank agreed to finance 95% of the house' price), we had to pay for the loan's insurance which is around 5,000 ringgit. The legal fees costs us about RM3,500. We took out personal loans, spend our bonus money and sold stuff to come up with all that money. All in all, to purchase a house that costs RM115,000 you need to prepare around 13,000 ringgit in cash to pay for everything. That's not counting the RM1,500 we had to fork out for the grills and another 900 for fans and lamps and a little wiring. And oh yeah, the movers costs a cool 300 ringgit for a 10 kilometers journey. So you see, buying a house is quite easy actually. All you have to prepare is the money. Boot-load of them.

I choose Casa Riana because it is strategically located half way between my office and Puchong, Bukit Jalil and Kuala Lumpur. From Puchong and PJ I can pass through Kinrara and from KL I can drive through the Selangor Turf Club, Bukit Jalil stadium or Seri Kembangan. It has security guards, a community hall, surau and the building is fairly new. The swimming pool and play ground is of course, a bonus. One parking lot is designated at random for each tenants but you can pay RM75 a month for an extra spot although I believed they are all sold out right now. From now on I only have to pay RM431 for the home loan plus RM143 for maintenance and sinking fees (whatever that is) which brings us to RM574 every month till long after I'm retired.
Tonight, we spend the first night in our new home. It's quite cool up here on the 5th floor with the cool night breeze and fantastic view of Taman Lestari Perdana. No need to worry about mosquitoes or cockroaches anymore although somehow the ants managed to find their way up here. You must commend them for their hard work. There are 8 homes here on the 5th floor and only 4 of them are occupied at the moment. We have and online discussion group at Yahoo Groups and 2 Facebook pages here and here. You can check them out for the latest happenings or for more information about the property and neighborhood. If you are interested to join us here, the market price starts from as low as RM125,000 at the moment and you can contact my agent Mr Lim at 012-3824280 (just don't take the lousy Public Bank loan officer that he recommends). But you'll have to be quick though because they are going up as with every other property here in Selangor and also because of the future LRT line that is passing through here.

Six months ago I wouldn't have imagined sitting here in our very own home. It's a complicated and expensive but if you want something bad enough and you put all your energy, focus and commitment into it you can make just about anything possible. 830 square feet is by no mean big but it is our home sweet home.

Previous related entries here and here.