MM2H = Malaysia My Second Home: good retirement or vacation home option?

A colleague of mine was telling me today about a program the Malaysian government runs that he might take advantage of. The MM2H program is designed to encourage foreigners to either buy a vacation home or retire in Malaysia.

This Malaysian article (it’s a business article) says that many MM2H people are buying in Penang. I went to Penang and have no real desire to go back (though the hotel was very nice). Partly that was because the taxis stressed me out (they don’t use the meter so taxis in Penang are always more expensive then in Kuala Lumpur (assuming you take the time in KL – different KL link – to find one who will use the meter).

In the article, people predict that real estate in both Penang and KL will go up. That’s one possible reason to buy a vacation or retirement home in Malaysia but it’s not enough.

This article lists some more reasons:

1. It’s always hot. Obviously this won’t thrill everyone but if you hate winter…

2. There is no language issue. Almost everyone speaks English, unlike in Charles de Gaulle Airport…

3. Good health care – Malaysia is a medical tourism destination.

Then the article gives you the basics of MM2H:

To attract affluent retirees, the Malay government operates the Malaysia My Second Home (MM2H) Programme to allow foreigners to stay in Malaysia for extended periods. Participants over 50 must deposit a minimum of RM150,000 (or about $43,000) in a Malay bank account (yes, you get interest and you can withdraw part of it after a year) or have access to a monthly pension of at least RM10,000 ($2,900), as well as having at least RM350,000 ($102,000) in liquid assets back home. In return, you get a 10-year pass that allows you to come and go. The pass is renewable and you pay no tax on income derived outside of Malaysia. Property prices in Malaysia are reasonable: you could buy a three-bedroom, 100-sq-m condominium in Penang for RM300,000 to 330,000 ($86,000 to $94,000) or pay about RM1,000 to 2,000 ($285 to $570) per month to rent the same space.

So basically they want people who have money moving there. I guess you can’t blame them for that. Most countries prefer people with money…

The other interesting thing is that the program is for people 50 and over. I don’t have any idea why they would prefer people 50 and up. Isn’t a 40-year-old with money just as good?

If you don’t have money, maybe Long Beach would be good (no electricity bill).

Filed Under: Vacation property

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  1. […] I’m lucky in that most of the time I like my work. So where would I consider retiring? Malaysia comes to mind – People speak English, Cheap Indian food all over, warm, exotic, […]

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