• Tue
  • Jul 29, 2014
  • Updated: 5:15am
NewsHong Kong

Mainland buyers account for 20pc of deals in two New Territories projects

Land Registry check of deals at two projects suggests mainland buyers remain active, say greens, who urge more curbs on sales to them

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 03 October, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 03 October, 2012, 5:22am

Mainland buyers accounted for almost 20 per cent of the sales in two new private residential projects in the New Territories that offered almost 2,700 luxury flats, a green group says.

Green Sense spokesman Roy Tam Hoi-pong said that, despite the recent government's policy of giving preference to local property buyers, the figures showed "many of the new homes built in Hong Kong are not for locals to live in but to satisfy the investment interests of local and mainland billionaires".

Tam said that in its searches of the Land Registry, Green Sense had found 19 per cent of 1,333 flats sold up to the middle of last month in The Beaumount went to customers with pinyin names as opposed to names written using Hong Kong romanisation. The Cheung Kong development in Tseung Kwan O has 1,777 flats.

In The Riverpark, a 981-flat Sha Tin project by New World Development and MTR Corp, buyers with pinyin names accounted for 18 per cent of 555 sales.

Both are marketed as luxury projects. For example, The Riverpark was sold at an average HK$8,500 per square foot, which this week went up to HK$9,000.

According to Tam, a sign in The Riverpark's showroom read, "selected mainland buyers are given priority in the queue".

Tam said: "We found someone to pose as a Putonghua-speaking visitor, but he couldn't get the priority because he did not have a mainland travel document."

He urged the government to expand its recently announced "Hong Kong property for Hong Kong residents" scheme. For now, this applies to only two sites at the former Kai Tak airport that will go on sale early next year.

The pilot scheme restricts the sale of new homes - and their resale for the following 30 years - to buyers who have Hong Kong residency.

Tam conceded that judging buyers' identities based on only the spelling of their names was not entirely accurate, but believed that this was nevertheless valid as a way of providing a rough estimate.

Real estate agencies including Centaline give regular estimates using a similar method.

However, the method cannot distinguish between speculators and mainlanders who have acquired residency in Hong Kong, and also misses people who buy through companies.

Tam's findings tally with property group Centaline's earlier records, which indicated that for flats worth less than HK$12 million the market share of mainland buyers rose from about 10 per cent in late 2009 to nearly 30 per cent in the past year.

For properties costing more than HK$12 million - including both new and second-hand homes - mainlanders featured in 27.3 per cent of the deals in the July to September quarter.

Tam suggested the government require developers to record buyers' place of residence and submit the data to officials, and assess the housing demands of different groups.


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Mainland buyers account for 20pc of deals "everywhere" these days...
People, first please read the article thoroughly. Then, it seems many really do not understand the property market and on purpose spread populism and fear. You would expect most of them are educated but it seems not. The object of high demand from Mainland are in the luxury segment and who in HK can afford proberties in such higher segment? Can you with an average income afford a 12 Million or more home? Fact is, the main middle class population are looking for the middle class properties or the public housings. The luxury property market are not of the concern of the the ordinary people but only the rich and wealthy ones, who regard those objects rather as investment than for living (how it ever has been in HK).
Mixing everything up makes your arguments not better.
That is rubbish. The mainland buyers have increasing come to Hong Kong to speculate because of all the restrictions put on the mainland property market by a government trying to cool it down. In just a few years prices have doubled, so what was no necessarily high end is now considered "high end" luxury even though its only 975 sq/ft.
You get it right the luxury property market is the concern.
The issue is that property developpers are given the choice to build affordable property and luxury properties who usually have a premium.
In the past years, most of new properties are so called luxury property. Hence the new supply is oriented in this way as well as the prices.
But the problem is that first hand property prices are driving second hand in this direction.
The price increases in the second hand market is due to the fact that there are people able to buy at such prices ie only a very few percentage of HK population and a lot of cash loaded mainlanders.
It's simple demand and offer principle. The same happened for basic product at cross boarder, private hospital services.
That is why CY wants to introduce new policies to fight against inflationary price rises. New lands for development which can satisfy all segments, new public funding housing to take off the burden for the low income families. There is still much land able to be developed if there weren't the negative attitudes from parts of the society, who do not want those lands to be developed (for personal reasons? or fear that Mainlanders want to grab those as well?). And there has been always people able to buy luxury properties, not matter from where they come. Trade goes in both direction. HK companies at all levels are buying products from Mainland to trade and supply the world. Shouldn't the Mainlander as well be complaining about this as their own supply is affected? Go to Shenzhen and ask the locals how much the costs for dental and other services used by HKners there increased.
Yes at least 40% as pretty much of all statistics : birth, flat buying, visitors etc.
In a blink of a decade, Hong Kong has been turn into a bipolarize country.
do not believe this 20% lie
more like 50%
This is "Socialism with Chinese Characteristics", meaning "let the few get rich first".
I suppose the government's plan is to sit on their hands until there is a full scale revolt. Well educated people with good incomes, earn too much to be granted public housing and too little to afford anything other than a shoe box, far away from their place of work. The writing is on the wall. There is going to be a massive brain drain at some point as such people begin the march toward the exit door in search of a decent and comfortable life. Letting housing turn into casino chips for speculators while leaving hard working families in the cold in un acceptable. Especially when the government has the power to take the problem.


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