Property markets in Beijing, Shanghai cooler
Updated: 2011-03-02 14:30
By Gao Yuan (chinadaily.com.cn)
The trading volume in both Beijing and Shanghai's property markets sagged in February, Chinese media reported Wednesday.
A total of 3,535 units of residential properties were sold in February in Beijing, down 69.4 percent from the previous month, the Beijing News reported, citing data from two property agencies. Last month's trading volume also reached a three-year low, as more than 7,000 apartments were sold during the Spring Festival seasons in 2010 and 2009, the report said.
The government's price-control measures were the immediate cause of the slump, said Ren Qixin, vice-manager of the Yahao Real Estate Selling & Consulting Solution Agency.
Beijing implemented new rules on property purchasing in mid-February, stating that families without Beijing hukou must have income tax or social insurance payment records for five consecutive years before purchasing.
The new regulations not only restrained demand, but made some eligible buyers more prudent as well, Ren said.
The city's average sale price was 21,810 yuan ($3,319.7) per square meter (sq m) in February, almost equal to January's level, said Zhang Dawei, who heads the third market research department of Beijing Centaline Property.
Zhang also estimated that the average price for March would continue to fall because some low-priced buildings in the suburbs have entered the market in late February.
Measures such as purchase limitation, increases in down payment and loan interest rate hikes were the reasons that caused the slump, said Hu Jinghui, vice-president of real estate agency Woaiwojia.
Meanwhile, Shanghai's property market also broke the lowest monthly sales record last month, with only 178,000 sq m of residential property sold, caijing.com.cn reported. The average sale price was 20,625 yuan per sq m, a 10 percent drop month-on-month, the report said.
Because of the tightened purchase policies, speculative investments were blocked out of the market, said Song Huiyong, head of Shanghai Centaline Property's research and consultative department. About 20-30 percent of the buyers were denied entering the market because of the new policies, Song said.
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