Date
24 May 2017
Home prices in at least one district in Zhengzhou have risen two-thirds this year to 25,000 yuan (US$3,747) per square meter on average. Photo: Xinhua
Home prices in at least one district in Zhengzhou have risen two-thirds this year to 25,000 yuan (US$3,747) per square meter on average. Photo: Xinhua

Three Chinese cities restrict property purchases

Three Chinese cities have announced new restrictions on property purchases in a bid to cool soaring home prices stoked by property speculators.

Residents of the inland city of Zhengzhou who already own two properties and non-residents who own one will now only be able to buy homes larger than 180 square meters (1,938 square feet), Reuters reports, citing a notice posted on the local government’s website over the weekend.

In Chengdu, the capital of southwest Sichuan province, prospective buyers will only be allowed to purchase one property in certain city districts, and those buying their second property will need to place a down payment of no less than 40 percent of the purchase price, the news agency said, citing a local government announcement.

The Chengdu government also said it will penalize developers who are sitting on land without starting construction on time as promised and will clamp down on rumor-mongering in the property market, the report said.

The eastern city of Jinan said residents who already own three properties cannot buy more and increased down payment requirements for those buying their first home to 30 percent from 20 percent, among other measures detailed in a document on the government’s website.

Pictures of hopeful homebuyers queuing up in Jinan to obtain spots in a lottery-like registry system during the public holiday weekend was widely published in state media before the new restrictions were published.

Such cities have become the target of property speculators looking for the next big thing beyond China’s major cities.

Other cities such as Tianjin, Hefei and Suzhou have also recently introduced measures to limit purchases as home prices jump.

Home prices in at least one district in Zhengzhou, which became a symbol of China’s property excesses because of rows of empty housing developments, have risen two-thirds this year to 25,000 yuan (US$3,747) per square meter on average, a sales manager told Reuters on a recent visit to the city.

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