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This article first appeared in Malay Mail Online, on April 1, 2017

KUALA LUMPUR, April 1 ― Finance Minister II Datuk Seri Johari Abdul Ghani’s suggestion that Malaysians put off home ownership to avoid long-term debt is valid advice, according to a wealth advisor.

Financial advisory firm Harveston’s Annie Hor, who concurred with the minister, also added that Malaysians who buy homes before they are financially ready may not be aware of the total cost of home ownership.

“Maintaining a property can be a concern when the house starts to show signs of aging and you have no funds to fix them,” she told Malay Mail Online.

This article first appeared in Personal Wealth, The Edge Malaysia Weekly, on January 8, 2018 - January 14, 2018.

Issues surrounding inheritance have been at the heart of an increasing number of family feuds in recent years. Industry experts say these incidents, coupled with the increasingly global and complex nature of wealth, have spurred the demand for multigenerational wealth planning and transfer solutions.

Today, ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) and high-net-worth (HNW) individuals in the region are more open to discussing details of their wealth. This is a vast difference from how the previous generation used to approach this matter, says Carolyn Leng, head of CIMB Private Banking.

“We are seeing a trend in Malaysia where the patriarchs are more willing to sit down and acknowledge the fact that they need to plan. I think that’s a huge step forward compared with maybe six or seven years ago, when they would consider such matters a taboo subject,” she says.

The increase in importance of wealth planning is in tandem with the rise in HNW individuals’ wealth in this part of the world. The largest HNW individual market is in the Asia-Pacific, according to the World Wealth Report 2017 by Capgemini. There are also massive intergenerational wealth transfers occurring in the world as baby boomers prepare to hand over their assets to their heirs.

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on May 7, 2018.

KUALA LUMPUR: There is an urgent need for more holistic planning solutions in Malaysia’s wealth management industry, said wealth management firm Harveston Financial Group executive director Phang Kar Yew.

According to Phang, the term wealth management in Malaysia is often perceived as investment advisory services.

However, wealth management is more than just investment, encompassing retirement planning, life and health insurance, education funding, tax planning, estate planning and succession planning.