Real Estate Market in China

In big cities like Beijing and Shanghai, real estate prices are sky-rocketing, and there are many laws restricting the sales of both new and second-hand property.  As of April 30th, 2010 families living in Beijing are permitted to buy one piece of real estate, according to an article published in Global Times.

I would like to go more into the question of this controversy- prices are going up, but more and more people want to buy.  There could be several explanations to this. On one hand, it could be because prices will continue to rise, and therefore it is still better to buy housing now.  On the other hand, as prices are rising, so is rent. Over the past two years, prices for renting apartments, especially in big cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, have been constantly increasing. Therefore, if it is possible to buy property now, it could be seen as the best thing to do. In the future, apartment owners could rent out the apartments for a higher price. Maybe it is because of this that many future homeowners are trying to purchase apartments now, before restrictions begin.

Another category of homeowners in China, whose count is currently increasing, are foreigners, who are looking at China more closely as a good place for investment and buying property. One drawback for foreigners in this case is the amount of paperwork that is necessary to fill out in order to buy the piece of property. According to a recent article published on the topic in China Daily, there are many procedures that expatriates have to go through before buying property here in China.

A salesman displays housing models to a customer at a real-estate expo

An important thing that foreigners have to think about id the type of visa they have and is it an appropriate one for purchasing an apartment and/or house.

“They must have lived in the city on a residence permit (known as the Z visa) for more than one year ahead of the date of purchase, according to the Opinions on Regulating the Access to and Administration of Foreign Investment in the Real Estate Market (Decree No 171) issued in 2006,” says Liu Si from the Real Estate Trading Center in Luwan district, as was reported in an article published in China Daily.

There are a number of legal documents that also have to put in order, such as proof of one’s status as a student or proof of working in China. 

Generally, the foreigners who actually purchase apartments in China are the ones who are committed to staying in the country, and the ones that are willing to go through the process. People who think that they might leave in the future generally tend to rent. However, fact is that buying property in China is becoming a more and more popular trend.

*Photo from search engine: Google.

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