Preferences of Security Criteria in Low-Cost Housings among Malaysian Residents

Radzi Ismail, Ha Chin Yee, Khoo Terh Jing, Mohd Wira Mohd Shafiei


Malaysia has developed rapidly, and more youngsters have moved to urban areas to seek better working opportunities. However, the competition in cities is intense. Those with low income and intending to stay in urban areas must purchase low-cost houses as their shelters. Low-cost houses often come with lower specifications due to the limitations that arise from their prices. This caused more crimes happened in these high-density and low-security-level areas. Thus, improving the security criteria to protect the residents at a low cost is necessary to reduce their fear of crime and improve the security level. This study has collected opinions from residents on the preferences of security criteria from several in-depth interviews. These respondents were selected based on a convenience sampling method in three main cities in Malaysia such as Kuala Lumpur, Pulau Pinang, and Johor Bahru, and responded that respondents are the ones who feel the limitations of low-cost housing. The results confirm that tangible criteria, such as surveillance, access control, territoriality, and target hardening, and intangible criteria, such as sense of community, management, and maintenance, are worth to be applied. The residents of low-cost housing prefer these criteria as the initial cost and maintenance cost for these criteria is comparably lower, which is more affordable for the low-income group. The results can be the foundation of future secure low-cost residentials planning by property developers and authorities.


Low-cost housing; security criteria; Malaysia; residents; preferences

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