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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Math Quiz: 176 Apartment Units served by 2 Elevators Only

Disclaimer: I have no ill feelings towards the developer, sellers, buyers, investors or anyone directly or indirectly involved in this property. I'm only voicing my opinion from what I observed.

Last sunday we were out running errands and bumped into a property sales booth in the middle of the shopping mall and decided to check it out just for fun. With property prices soaring year after year, I did get a little tempted to buy one for investment. But THIS property in Bandar Perda is definitely OUT of the question.

Location wise, there is a prospect of development especially with the government buildings within the vicinity. Currently there are many vacant land near this property site, but according to the sales person who showed me a map with future planned developments which includes a bus station. The BM City which is under construction at the moment would be a mixed development property. The first 6 floors would consist of businesses (2 floors) and car parks (4 floors). The 7th floor would be a recreational floor for the apartment dwellers only and the remaining 14 floors is residential.
BM City Podium Floor Plan
{Image Source BM City Realty & Construction}

Personally I find the 7th floor quite captivating as it's management maintained. According to the sales person, membership is compulsory for all apartment owners (I forgot to ask about tenants membership for those individuals who rent). While maintenance fees is twelve cents per square feet (I think). Not all the apartment units are sized the same with the smallest at 619 square feet and the largest 1441 square feet. The price range per square feet also varies depending on which floor you are looking at; MYR300 - MYR350 per square feet.

So why did I say earlier that THIS property is not part of my investment idea? Well, the main reason is down to the Ringgit and not-so-common sense. When I asked the sales girl for the cheapest unit available, she pointed out to me the smallest sized unit way up near the top floor which price was a whopping MYR227,000. She this was the cheapest available. Even if I were to get a loan, it would force me to pay some MYR1,200 per month in bank installments alone!

BM City Apartment Floor Plan
{Image Source: BM City Realty & Construction}
The common sense part is circled in red in the picture above. Each tower is served by only 2 elevators and according to the sales girl, the elevator fits 13 people at each moment. Now, math quiz: Imagine every room in every apartment unit has one occupant. So if that apartment have 4 rooms, there would be 4 people, 3 rooms 3 people and 2 room 2 people. That would roughly be 102 people in each floor. Now multiply that by 11 floors (I excluded the 3 floors of designer suites which would obviously hold lesser occupants). That would make some 1,122 occupants in a single building block serviced by only 2 elevators which can only old 13 people at any one moment.

Now, question: How long would it take to evacuate so many residents in the event of emergency? And in the event of a disaster, wouldn't this flaw be a death trap? There is only two stair columns drawn in the floor plan. But imagine climbing up/down 20 floors of stairs in the event one of the two elevators is down for maintenance! Worse when both are not functioning. Can the management guarantee that it will NEVER breakdown?

Perhaps if you scrutinize their official website you'll noticed that the floor plan drawings are exceptionally small while the other images are exceptionally large. Trying to "hide" their flaw perhaps?

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Being different

While I was reading today's local daily, I came across a section where they publish news articles from other media. It quoted Berita Harian (a local Malay language paper) reporting about a certain local artist dressing weirdly ala Lady Gaga style while attending a local awards event. While Didie Alias remained unfazed by the criticisms, I'll be giving her two thumbs up.
TAKE TWO
Didie Alias at ABPBH 2012
{Image Source : One News Hub}
Lady Gaga at Brit Awards 2010
{Image Source : DailyMail UK}
Both women (I know... they look like drags) are entertainers / artists, one gets cheered for her creativity while the other gets slammed for thinking out of the box! Personally I don't know who is Didie Alias or her works but her decision to stand out from the sea of artists sure caught my attention. Probably this is the reality check for those who are in the entertainment industry - you are nobody until somebody talks about you.

I don't know about other people, but for me I see this as a good sign for creativity to grow. Many of us have complained about how boring our local advertisement industry is compared to Thailand (myself included), so why complain about someone who is bringing change to the industry? I think Didie Alias's outlandish dress is creating enough buzz for people who are not so interested in the ET-World (EnterTainment World) to take note. I do agree that her ensemble by Farell Mikhail is quite bizarre when everyone is else is accustomed to gowns and black ties, but at the end of the day, she is doing her job - to entertain people!

On the other hand, I'm not expecting every local entertainer try and out-dress Didie Alias to be the next Lady Gaga of Malaysia. Just don't be hyper-ly critical when someone is being different. Creativity has no right or wrong especially in the entertainment industry. I mean hey, cars can still drive, flip and probably blow up when the axel is missing (watch Fast 5 and you'll know what I mean). Just because you have a teacher like the one in this following clip, doesn't mean you have to grow up and be like him too...


Foot note : Didie Alias's dress is designed by Farell Mikhail while Lady Gaga's 2010 Brit Awards dress is by Francesco Scognamiglio

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Another Impulse Purchase >.<|||

Today is going to be one bizarre post. Honestly, I don’t even know why I bought it in the first place. Well, I guess parting MYR3.30 (approx. USD1.10) isn’t a pain to my purse; eat less one bowl of noodles perhaps? Anyway here’s the scoop, I’ve been stalking a local chain store for many years now. They’ve got tones of products offered at really cheap prices. Once sold out, you can almost never see that item again; unless you stalk their other branches around town or ask your next of kin or friend to stalk on your behalf. The name of the shop is MR. DIY.

Tea Light Candle Burner from MR. DIY 
They have a branch in almost every other town and the prices for their products are really cheap; selling almost every household category available (cosmetics, décor, tools, infant stuffs, stationary etc.) As their items are somewhat cheap, the quality isn’t exactly the best in town. Like the Chinese saying “一分钱,一分货” (meaning you get what you pay for). Although they do have some items sold that are really worth the buy. One item in particular that I fell in love is this burner which cost only MYR6.90. The fragrance oil is sold separately which I think it’s not worth the purchase of MYR3.90 as the scent doesn’t even last 15 minutes!

Anyhow, the main reason I love stalking MR. DIY is for their “AS SEEN ON TV” products. It is really fascinating to find some of these “AS SEEN ON TV” stuffs sold at MR DIY like the gyro bowl, baby moonwalker, garlic crusher, lint remover etc. Yes, they may be a little slow in taking some of these items (probably a few years after its hype) but the price to pay is seriously draw dropping!

Bare LiftsStickers : Front Box Packaging

So this MYR3.30 item that talked about earlier is the Bare Lifts™ stickers. It was a hot item sold by online stores anywhere between MYR20-50 (shipping included). When I first saw it was 3-4 years back (it was only available in Singapore then and the company was looking for distributors in Malaysia). The price was in Singapore Dollars and nowhere near MYR3.30 after conversion. Obviously there was no way I would pay for one but still shared the idea with hubby for fun. So when I was at MR DIY last week, I saw those stickers in the cosmetic aisle I grabbed a box without thinking twice!

Yes, I honestly admit that I still have a problem with impulse buying and am trying very very hard to control. But there are some perks to getting this box because I may still have a rare occasion where I might make these stickers to good use. And the best part is that I don’t have to pay ridiculous prices! I mean, lets’ do the math together: the box of Bare Lifts™ 10 pieces sticker cost MYR4 (round up to the higher Ringgit) plus MYR6 for post laju equals MYR10. Anything else added on top is pure profit! Those online deals shop must be laughing their way to the bank. And mind you that when I buy the stickers from MR. DIY, I’m very sure MR. DIY made some profits already!
Bare LiftsStickers : Back of the Box Packaging

So if there is anyone of you out there looking for Bare Lifts™ sold in Malaysia; or trying to find the cheap Bare Lifts™ in Malaysia, just head out to the nearest MR. DIY with MYR3.30 in hand! Let me warn you beforehand those items are available while stocks last, so don’t come yelling at me if you can’t find them. Just contact MR. DIY customer service via their official website here.

Bare Lifts
This post is NOT paid by MR. DIY or Bare Lifts™. I just felt unfair for those who pay MYR19.90 for a box of stickers which I only paid MYR3.30

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Montessori Mania

Montessori is actually a person’s name; Dr. Maria Montessori (wiki). She is an Italian medical doctor that developed a unique method of teaching for children. In 1907, she opened her first ‘Casa Del Bambini’ or Children’s House equipped with child sized furnishings; not a common sight at that era. But her methods of creating an environment favoring the children became a catalyst for the children themselves to explore and learn. It was a far better learning method than children in conventional schools of being fixed down to a chair and being forced to listen to the teacher shrieks and shrills.
Dr. Maria Montessori at her desk
{Image source: Wikipedia}
Some hundred years later the Montessori Method has been adapted into many schools and homes around the globe (though the shriek and shrill method still very much exist till this day). Personally I have tried a few methods on my daughter and have seen how much she has learned, more importantly her joys of learning fueled her curiosity to learn and understand more. At times it can be very annoying with her asking me the same question a few hundred times a day for the whole week! Nevertheless, the rewards of her doing something new is a surprise that’s worthy of it all.

{Image Source: Montessori Print Shop}
But I don’t go all out with the Montessori Method when I teach my daughter. Occasionally, the traditional method of cane, shriek and shrills (CSS) still works for me. Now please don’t start calling child services and report me. I am after all an Asian mom so the cane is part and parcel of growing up; though compared to my parents and theirs before them, I can assure you I use very much less of the cane. Whenever possible, I would most prefer a calmer environment minus the CSS.

Living Montessori Now 3rd Blogiversary Giveaway
{Image source: Living Montessori Now}
The Montessori Materials is educational and very helpful for the young ones, but at times it is very expensive. HOWEVER this month the price tags are coming off like Jessie J’s song; though you pay it with clicks rather than love... Deb Chitwood of Living Montessori Now is hosting a giveaway and a VERY LARGE one at that. 3 prizes are to be given away in total with a combined value of USD645. Am I drooling? Yes of course! Else, why would I be blogging about it right? Especially since blogging does enable me to have 3 extra entry points. It’s a lucky draw style of giveaway, and each action requires entitles you to a certain number of entry points. Thus, the more entry points the higher chances of winning. For contest details please click here. There are plenty of clicking required so you better hurry as contest ends 15 April 2013.

My favorite activity : Nomenclature cards
{Image source: Montessori Print Shop}
Well, since this is an international giveaway, competition is tight. I have an older copy of Montessori At Home by John Bowman (http://www.montessoriathomebook.com) and I have adapted quite a number of activities from that book to teach my little daughter. You may see this as me being a "kia su"(Hokkien dialect for "afraid to lose") mom. But I would rather say that since I am a full time mom, why can't I teach my own child? Why must I go of slaving myself to get a job just to pay another person to teach my child? Please excuse my sudden burst of crudeness, but I've been snubbed before for being a full time mom instead of joining the bandwagons of super working mothers. The bottom line is, I take 3 steps back to put my daughter 10 paces forward... To be a better person.

Anyway if you're not sure what Montessori is all about and how you can apply it at home, try visiting Montessori Print Shop (click here for free download link) and try out their free materials. Enjoy!