Is this right time to buy an apartment?

Updated: 2013-08-06 10:25


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Is this right time to buy an apartment?


BEIJING -- As China's house prices continued rising in July, the eighth-consecutive month with fast growth, property market again becomes a hot issue.

In the latest issue "China Finance" magazine, Sheng Songcheng, Director of Investigation and Statistics Division of China Central Bank, wrote: "Some people say the high housing prices are 'printed out', this is not accurate. I rather say that high housing price was caused by 'market hype' instead of using the word of 'print-out'."

China's housing prices have continued to climb over past decade. In recent years, especially in some parts of China, unaffordable high house prices are considered a crucial problem for ordinary people.

The average price of new homes in the 100 monitored cities reached 10,347 yuan ($1,688) per square meter in July, higher than the average 10,258 per square meter in June, up 0.87 percent from June and the month-on-month growth rate was 0.77 percent in June, according to China Real Estate Index System's figures.

Meanwhile, a recent quarterly survey of 350 real estate managers in 31 of China's big cities revealed that more than half of them said they will increase supplies in the third quarter and raise prices.

A meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China's Central Committee on Tuesday vowed to "promote the stable and healthy development of the real estate market", as opposed to previous meetings' "keeping the policy of real estate market regulation unchanged".

The subtle change made property market observers believe that the government will continue the policy of "no control". Also it triggered A-share market real estate sector rebound.

Three property developers saw their prices increase to the day's trading limit of 10 percent while a total of 110 companies saw rising prices on last Wednesday.

Correspondingly, the market also appeared in a new round of panic buying, as in areas, some buyers were even willing to pay extra price to buy house.

"There is misunderstanding about policy execution and policy goal. China didn't mention to force lowering house prices, it always mentions to stabilize real estate market, and to remain stabilizing growth of prices. House price is related to real estate development, real estate development is related to the development of the economy. China is in stage of steady economic growth, it is inevitable that real estate market leading the industry growth." said Wang Juelin, former Deputy Director of Housing and Urban Policy Research Center.

Under such complicated policies and market factors, people will ask, "Is this a right time to buy an apartment?" -- a more difficult question than "Should we invest in stock market now?"

For rigid need, no matter what the national economic situation and property market trends indicate, it only makes sense to buy if it meshes with your current place in life and your future goals.

For investment, it is a dilemma of choice. If you buy house, you may encounter problems such as high property taxes or transaction taxes. If you decide not to buy house and keep money in the hands, that may still make you worry about money devaluation.

Furthermore, while no one can guarantee no loss and risk on investment products, it also applies to real estate investment. If you consider real estate as an investment product, factors such as policies risks and liquidity risks should be taken into account in order to avoid huge and unacceptable loss.

Altogether, to determine when you should pull the trigger, you should always keep eyes on what's happening in local real estate market, all factors which may affect housing prices should be considered. Try to be rational and cautious.