Embedding eco-friendly and smart technology features in affordable housing for community happiness in Malaysia


Two phases of study are involved in this research: first, the sales strategies for affordable houses embedded with eco-friendly and smart technology features; and second, the impact of such houses on community happiness in Malaysia. Compared to other studies that focus on the concept of affordable housing, this study proposed a new research perspective on how eco-friendly features and smart technologies can be embedded into the affordable house to achieve community happiness. Qualitative data was collected from four focus group discussions and six face-to-face interviews. Thematic analysis was performed to generate the outcomes. It was notable that affordable price, strategic location, effective government policies, fostering pro-environmental behaviour, promotion and easy smart-home technology installation play an important role in selling the affordable eco-friendly smart house. It was further found that affordable eco-friendly smart housing will result in community happiness. This study offers new knowledge to the affordable house research area by exploring strategies to include eco-friendly and smart technology features. The urge to have these technologies was driven by the demand for current community lifestyle and happiness. This research contributes to the sustainable development goals programme by considering housing affordability, the environment, energy saving and technologies in a single study. It is also beneficial to socio-economic development as it proposes balanced sales strategies that involve social and economic aspects. The inductive approach aims to provide a theoretical framework for future researchers.

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  1. 1.

    For example: Affordable Home Programme 2016-21 in London: Housing for All by 2022 or ‘Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana in India: Inclusionary Zoning Affordable Housing Program in US, National Affordable Housing Program in Indonesia, Affordable Housing Programme (AHP) in Kenya: 2030 Youth Housing Program in Korea: Sakani Affordable Housing Program in Saudi Arabia.

  2. 2.

    In this study, maintenance include energy consumption cost such as water and electricity bills; infrastructure cost that comprise rent, insurance and assessment tax; surrounding cost which includes pest and termites treatment; and other repair and maintenance costs.

  3. 3.

    Other services include accessibility to schools, employment opportunities, health facilities, shops for marketing and recreational facilities.

  4. 4.

    Bumiputera is a Malaysian of indigenous Malay origin.

  5. 5.

    Bumiputera lots refer to housing units that can only be bought by Bumiputera. Quota refers to the minimum of 30% of all property units in a housing project being allocated to Bumiputera.


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This research was supported by Fundamental Research Grant Scheme (FRGS/1/2018/SS03/UTAR/02/5).

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Correspondence to Zam Zuriyati Mohamad.

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Mohamad, Z.Z., Yang, F.C., Charles Ramendran, S.P.R. et al. Embedding eco-friendly and smart technology features in affordable housing for community happiness in Malaysia. GeoJournal (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10708-020-10247-8

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  • Affordable house
  • Eco-friendly
  • Smart home technologies
  • Community happiness
  • Thematic analysis