SUDDEN changes to borrowing rules in China have left buyers nervous and cooled the general markets in Beijing and Shanghai. The government must inspire confidence that financing restrictions would not be enforced overnight, said Karen Wong, Colliers Jardine's managing director, China. This was to ensure the long-term stability of the Chinese property market, she said. ''People are afraid of a full stop to mortgage financing, or a change, such as a 50 per cent lending ceiling by the banks, which is making them nervous,'' Ms Wong said. ''Very few banks are doing mortgaging in China at the moment. They may introduce new laws which will be beneficial to buyers, such as stopping all sales in a given year.'' Bank mortgaging in China was very tight and developers would soon be forced into bigger down payments instead of relying on funds from pre-sales as before. Recent research by Colliers Jardine, which has a joint venture in China with CITIC, showed a climb in the market. ''Two to three months ago, prime Shanghai office rentals were US$1.60 per square metre per day - that's quite expensive,'' Ms Wong said. Rent was now US$2 per sq m per day, or US$60 per square foot per month. In Shanghai, there was virtually no supply to meet high demand, Ms Wong said, but with several new buildings about to come on stream, this would change. Beijing was equally as tight, with top-quality city centre condominiums hard to find. Serviced apartments in condominium blocks were at a premium after a glut 18 months ago. ''Now, if you want a serviced flat there is virtually no choice, and a long waiting list,'' Ms Wong said. Top-class, serviced furnished apartments of 2,000sq ft in well positioned Beijing office buildings rent for US$6,000 a month. There were several Beijing housing projects being marketed in Hong Kong, but most were far out of town, Ms Wong said. ''The suburbs in Beijing are not overly convenient. Some of the projects are miles from anywhere. Public transport is not good, though taxis are relatively easy to find and inexpensive.'' By Christmas, several new city centre condominium projects should be ready, and would ease the situation. Ms Wong said relocating businesses in China was also a hot market. ''Whatever your company wants to do in China it needs to get approval, and that all happens in Beijing, so businesses need to have people there,'' she said.