Real estate curbs begin to hit home

China Daily 2017-10-10

Newly introduced restrictions help curb market during peak sales season

  

Property sales in the country's major cities dropped to a three-year low during the recent National Day holiday, as the intensive launch of restrictive measures began to bite.

 

Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou all saw plummeting property sales during the weeklong holiday.

  

According to data from the real estate section of 163.com, an online information portal, only 134 new homes were transacted during the first eight days of October this year in Beijing, a decrease of 70 percent year-on-year.

 

In Shanghai, 178 properties were sold between Oct 1 and 8, down 82 percent year-on-year.

 

In Guangzhou, 541 properties were transacted in the first eight days of October, a decline of 89 percent year-on-year.

 

"It is expected that such a situation will continue for the rest of the year," said Zhang Dawei, a Beijing-based researcher at Centaline Property,

Analysts said that decline in transactions is not surprising even during the conventional peak sales season.

 

More than 100 cities have launched over 150 policies to curb speculative home purchases since the end of September in 2016.

 

Beijing is one of the cities which was most affected, with both prices and the sales volume experiencing a sharp decline.

  

According to data from BICIC, a property market services provider, 20,600 preowned homes were sold in the third quarter in Beijing, down 43.7 percent quarter-on-quarter and 73.7 percent year-on-year. The average price was around 55,000 yuan ($8,267) per square meter, about 10 percent lower than in the second quarter this year, according to property information provider anjuke.com.

 

Hainan province also launched a new policy to suspend the development of small apartments below 100 square meters in specific coastal regions, generally purchased as second homes or holiday homes.

  

Investors who bought properties in coastal cities in Hainan province may only live in property for a couple of months, and leave the property empty for the rest of the year, which may put great pressure on public resources, and cause a great waste of land resources.

  

Squeezing this unreasonable demand out of the market will spare resources for local residents, creating a more rational property market, said local housing authorities.

  

More cities further tightened conditions for transactions in the housing market before Oct 1 to prevent a sudden overheating in the peak season.

  

New rules in Chongqing and Nanchang said that in central districts, buyers of newly built properties will not be allowed to sell the properties for at least two years. In Guiyang, the limit is three years.

 

"More cities are taking steps to curb speculative demand in the housing market, an initial step toward a long-term solution allowing for the sustainable and steady development of the housing market," said Deng Yusong, a researcher at the Development Research Center of the State Council.

 

Ouyang Shijia contributed to this story.