Real Estate for the Dead

Nowadays, almost everyone can venture into small time real estate and many are having a go at it by investing in residential property. The rules are simple; locate properties that you predict have potential of growth, buy it, rent it to get instant returns or hold on to it and sell it a few years later to make profit from its valuation. If done correctly, the investment will almost always be a sure fire way to earn some extra bucks. Recently though, people interested in such investment measures are provided with another potentially lucrative albeit unconventional alternative; investing in burial plots.

Nirvana Memorial Park Burial Plot

Of late, more and more people are ditching the taboo involving discussion about death and as such, more people are concerned about where their loved ones will be put to rest once they pass away. Even for those who opt for the more space-efficient method of cremation, a slot at a columbarium to permanently place an urn can easily cost up to thousands of ringgit these days. Hence, one can only imagine how prices of burial plots might likely soar considering that there will always be a demand from those who grasp tradition closer to their hearts paired with the fact that the amount of empty land decreases over time due to development.

The investment potential in burial grounds was recently covered in the local media whereby the center of attention was on one of Malaysia’s most widely known corporations in this business; Nirvana Memorial Park. In an interview by The Star, CEO Au Kok Huei mentioned that prices of burial plots in Nirvana Memorial Park started at about RM20,000 around 5 years ago. Even today, that is a substantial amount of money to lay someone to rest but 5 years on to the present, Au mentioned that these prices have increased to RM30,000 to RM35,000.

This situation is the same at another ‘high-end’ memorial park known as Blissful Memorial Park whereby its cheapest plots back when it first opened cost RM19,000. Seven years on and the price of this entry level residence for the deceased has now inflated to RM30,000. Basically, we can observe a trend here whereby the value of a burial plot at one of these major memorial parks can increase in value by a whopping 50% in about 5 years. To put things to scale, that is like buying an apartment for RM200,000 and selling it for RM300,000 5 years later.

Obviously, this seems like a great business proposition and it is no wonder that people are taking to investment activities involving these burial plots, evident when the management executive of Blissful Memorial Park revealed in an interview with the Star where one of their customers have recently purchased 12 burial plots for the sake of investment.
Basically, these burial plots are just tiny plots of land that obviously cost more per square feet than the average house but at what they cost, they are probably more attainable than residential property and as an investment, they are almost risk free and give great returns in short periods of time so what are you waiting for?

In fact, for those who want to venture further into this method of real estate, it would also be possible to take things up a notch and purchase your own plot of land instead of a single burial plot at a memorial ground and either sell the land to memorial ground developers or develop it into one yourself. Either way, it is safe to conclude that there is a lot of money involved in the afterlife these days, regardless of whether you are the buyer or the investor.

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