China Housing

After limitations failed to dampen buyer sentiment, China’s housing prices rose at their quickest rate in eight months in April.

New condo prices in 70 cities, not including state-subsidized housing, jumped 0.48 percent last month, compared to 0.41 percent in March, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Monday (May 17). Values on the secondary market, which is less influenced by the government, increased by 0.4 percent, the same as a month before.

Investors are embracing real estate as a hedge against global inflation, fueling buyer excitement. As a result, officials have issued a barrage of remarks aimed at lowering pricing expectations. According to China Real Estate Information Corp, year-to-date residential sales in cities such as Shenzhen, Shanghai, Hangzhou, and Nanjing have more than quadrupled compared to the same time last year.

When chairing a meeting of China’s 25-member Politburo, the Communist Party’s highest governing body, Mr. Xi reiterated his slogan that homes are “for living in, not for speculating.” Last week, policymakers hinted that they would try again to implement a long-delayed national real estate tax via a pilot program.

Before the numbers were revealed, Yang Kewei, a research director at China Real Estate Information, stated, “The property market has remained somewhat out of control; the broader the limits, the more robust the market gets.” “As a greater show of policy strength, a trial of a house ownership fee may come sooner than planned.”

Developers hastened project debuts during a normally fast season for sales to repay capital, accelerating price growth across major and small cities. According to a separate statistics release, property sales increased by 35% year over year.

Given their comparatively looser constraints and stronger demand as centuries-old “hukou” dwelling licenses were progressively relaxed, price increase was especially pronounced in tier-two regional centers. Wuhan, the previous epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic, and Haikou, the provincial capital of tropical Hainan, are among the cities where house prices have increased by at least 1% since March.