Buying costs are very low in Malaysia

Taxation Researcher | April 04, 2022

How high are realtors´ and lawyers´ fees in Malaysia? What about other property purchase costs?

Transaction Costs

Who Pays?
Stamp Duty 1% - 3% buyer
Lawyer/Solicitor´s Fees 0.4% - 1% buyer
Other Fees MYR180 (US$49) buyer
Real Estate Agent´s Fees 2% - 2.75% seller
Costs paid by buyer 1.50% - 5.10%
Costs paid by seller 2.00% - 2.75%
See Footnotes
Source: Global Property Guide

How difficult is the property purchase process in Malaysia?

Foreigners can purchase any kind of property with a minimum value of MYR 1 million (US$250,250) as of 2014. They are allowed to purchase up to two residential properties - two condominiums (max. 50% foreign ownership within a block) OR one condominium and one of the following:

  • Terrace or linked houses above two storeys, but limited to 10% of the total number of units built of this type
  • Lands/bungalows and semi-detached houses, but limited to 10% of units built of these types

Malaysia luxury townhouses

The first step to purchasing property in Malaysia is to hire a real estate lawyer to assist in the transaction. Once property is selected, a Letter of Offer/Acceptance is signed, and a 3% deposit is expected from the buyer.

Within 14 days, the Sale and Purchase Agreement is signed. The buyer must pay another 7% deposit. From the date of the signing, the buyer has a maximum of three months to accomplish full payment.

The Sale and Purchase Agreement must be stamped at the Stamp Office. After the examination on the property of the valuation department, Stamp Duty is paid to the Stamp Office. The transfer must be registered at the Land Office Registry.

Be cautious when buying new property in unfinished condominium projects. Buyers may not be fully protected against default, an issue vigorously raised by the Malaysian House Buyers´ Association, which has pointed to flaws in The Housing Development (Control & Licensing) Act 2002, and the Strata Titles Act. Those buying unfinished property from developers should ensure that the developer has a valid Developer´s License and a valid Sales & Advertising permit.

Footnotes to Transaction Costs Table

The round trip transaction costs include all costs of buying and then re-selling a property - lawyers´ fees, notaries´ fees, registration fees, taxes, agents´ fees, etc.

Malaysia uses Malaysian Ringgit. Exchange rate is at US$1=MYR3.6777 as of 26th October 2006.

Stamp Duty:


Up to 100,000 (US$25,000)  1%
100,000 – 500,000 (US$125,000) 2%
500,000 – 1,000,000 (US$250,000) 3%
Over 1,000,000 (US$250,000) 4%

Legal Fee
Legal fee is based on the property value.


Up to 150,000 (US$40,541) 1%
150,000 - 1 million (US$270,270) 0.70%
1 million - 3 million (US$810,811) 0.60%
3 million - 5 million (US$1,351,351) 0.50%
5 million - 7,500,000 (US$2,027,027) 0.40%
Over 7,500,000 (US$2,027,027) negotiable on property value exceeding threshold but shall not exceed 0.40%

Other Fees:

Other fees are around MYR180 (US$49). Other fees include stamping fee (MYR10 or US$3 per document), adjudication fee (MYR10 or US$3), search fee (MYR60 or US$16), and registration fee (MYR100 or US$27).


Stamping fee (per document) 10
Adjudication fee 10
Search fee 60
Registration fee 100
Total 180

Other Fees
Other fees are around MYR180 (US$58). Other fees include stamping fee (MYR10 or US$3per document), adjudication fee (MYR10 or US$3), search fee (MYR60 or US$18), and registration fee (MYR100 or US$31).

Real Estate Agent´s Fee:
Real estate agent´s fees are regulated by the Board of Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents Malaysia (LLPEH). Commission is paid either by buyer or seller, subject to a maximum discount of 30% but a minimum fee of MYR1,000 (US$313) per case. The scale is not applicable to sale of foreign properties in Malaysia.


Up to 500,000 (US$135,135) 2.75%
Over 500,000 (US$135,135) 2%


Rian | April 13, 2010

We have recently purchased a house in Selangor. The loan has been approved and we would like to know who should pay for the valuation fees?

Thames Valley | May 11, 2010

I am trying to sell my property in Malaysia. Have a buyer but need to know who pays my lawyer's costs.Also is there capital gains tax on the sale? Selling it off without any profit. Just getting back the deposit i paid. Views appreciated.

JENNIFER | July 15, 2010

We have bought a house in JB 2 years ago.
If after a few years, one of us no longer a Malaysian. What will happen to our property in Malaysia? What should we do if the situation happen?

Teoh | July 18, 2010

I am a Malaysian. This is regarding the stamp duty on S&P. The property is an apartment costing RM530K and it is financed by a bank for 10 years. On the stamp duty on S&P, when is this payable ? Is this payable upon signing S&P or upon complete payment of the property, which is 10 years from now ? Thanks and you have a nice day. 18-Jul-10

Ah Wee | August 03, 2010

i plan to buy a house at$780K from developer. The developer will pay for the S&P legal fees.
What are the legal fees & stamp duty charges do i have to pay and how much? Do i ahve to pay the Title transfer fees?

Shahsalleh | August 05, 2010

Hi, recently I signed S&P with owner for purchase of 2nd hand house in johor.But the tenor 3+1 month had expired due the delay of obtaining my bank loan My question, can I extend the S&P with the consent of the owner ? please advise what is the best solution.Thank you

Sofea | August 21, 2010

Last month, I tried to buy an apartment and paid deposit 3% without noticing that Im not eligible to buy that property coz it was a low cost apartment. i would like to know why I'm not eligible,I'm a malaysian and owned a small restaurant. The agent did not want to refund the deposit although the sales is not done and I was slept with RM 900 for the lawer and so-called evaluation fees. Can the lawer charge me like that. Pls, advice me how to get my money back from agent. thanks.

becky | August 30, 2010

I'm planning to purchase a double storey house at Seri Kembangan cost around RM500k from my friend..What is the procedure of buying if i don't want to go through agent?

jayjay | September 01, 2010

I thought they increase the agents fees to 3% flat now?

Ah Wee | September 02, 2010

Ah Wee, have you managed to get an answer for your question? If yes, pls share with me as i am also having the same question.

YOOKMOI | March 03, 2015

Hi there, in 2009 I bought an apartment from developer directly and it was TOP on 2011. Recently my lawyer told me they are in the midst in preparing to transfer the strata title from developer. Could you please advice me do I need to pay stamp duty? if yes, at what rate? Based on purchase price or current market price ? I have another shared terrace house with my brother that bought before this apartment, do I entitle discount on stamp duty?

Shah | November 30, 2016

Hi, real estate agent's fee in Malaysia no longer 2.75% and 2%. Currently the fee is 3% and already revised around 5 years ago. thank you.

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