Islam upholds social justice that aims to ensure that every individual can enjoy reasonable living standards.
THE right to own a home is fundamental for each individual.
The Government of a country is thus responsible for ensuring that every person is able to live a life that is stable, secure, and dignified. In Islam, the house is an integral part of the maqasid al-syariah, which constitutes property preservation.
The inability of an individual to own a residence is a worrying issue for the Government that needs to be solved. In this respect, the Government is obliged to act as a protector of its citizens and safeguard victims from any consequence of problems that may arise.
Moreover, the home or residence is one of the things included in the preservation of property in syariah, termed by the Iranian theologian al-Ghazzali as “worldly goals”.
Islam also always seeks to uphold social justice, aiming to ensure that every individual human being can enjoy reasonable living standards.
Allah says, “(such assessments) that the property does not only circulate among the wealthy among you.” (Surah al-Hashr 59:7)
The verse explains that wealth is not to be monopolised within a small group of people, nor should wealth adversely affect others or fail to preserve the betterment of humans.
However, the current high cost of homes is not likely to fulfil the people’s right to own a home. The 1Malaysia People’s Housing Scheme (PR1MA) homes provided by the Government are also insufficient to meet the current high demand.
Therefore, Government intervention in determining the price of a house is a good action against the pricing vagaries of the real estate market, even perhaps against housing prices from soaring.
Yet, for those who are ready to own a home, certain criteria should be considered. Two factors need attention, namely financial and non-financial factors.
Financial factors are the most important consideration in preparing to purchase a home. Firstly, loans must be secured.
Such loans are productive loans, usually made at financial institutions in accordance with the home-buyers qualifications and abilities. The financial capability of an individual usually depends on their salary, based on median household income, and expenses.
Therefore, we need to check the cash flow and value of our assets to determine our financial comfort. In terms of finances, two common issues need to be considered, namely, prepayment and related costs.
A house usually requires a 10% deposit of the total price of the house. For example, if the house is RM300,000, the deposit needed is RM30,000.
In addition, we should also provide an additional allocation of 10% to 20% for any incidental expenses, such as legal service fees, stamp duties, furniture and safety feature installations. Therefore, at least 30% of the total sum should be at hand before purchasing a home.
Non-financial factors should also be considered. Among them is property location; that is, a strategic location that can offer basic facilities such as shops, banks, a post office, hospitals or recreational parks. In addition, accessibility to good transportation to the workplace should also be considered.
At the same time, we cannot overlook the reputation of the housing project developer. There are several important factors to note before buying a house from a developer.
Among them are to exercise caution before buying, as well as anticipate problems that may arise due to our lack of knowledge about the background of the developer.
In addition, purchasers need to scrutinise the track record of developers and understand important terms in a Sale and Purchase (S&P) agreement.
The right to own a home is a basic objective of safeguarding property in thesyariah. As such, the Government should ensure that home ownership arrangements are simplified.
In turn, buyers should be cautious when purchasing homes and not rush to commit themselves into signing an S&P. The criteria mentioned above should be considered and used as a guide.
Thus, it is better if our society is not only aware but also literate about property knowledge. In this regard, the importance of education relating to home ownership should be given priority, particularly in terms of financial management and property management.
Likewise, the ability to own a home is closely related to the level of household income required to repay loan instalments within a certain period. Youths or young adults tend to think of owning a home they are able to pay for every month, not owning a home they can afford to pay in five to 10 years.
Therefore, our ability to pay loan instalments within a length of time and our commitment to solvency should be reviewed.
Recommendations have also been made that housing programmes, such as the ‘Rumah Pertamaku’ programme, be made for younger generations, particularly Millenials, as the group represents the largest percentage of the country’s employment sector.
Providing the group with comfortable housing is an important way to improve the well-being and happiness of families and individuals, which eventually makes a great positive impact on their spiritual lives.
Nor Hartini Bt Saari The STAR Home News Opinion Columnist IKIM Views 5 April 2016