Chinese homebuyers vent rage at Country Garden for slashing prices at two residential developments by up to 30 per cent
A decision by Country Garden Holdings, the mainland’s largest developer by sales, to cut prices by up to 30 per cent at projects in two cities during the week-long national holiday, has sparked angry protests by scores of buyers who paid full price ahead of the discounts.
The protesters, some seen holding Chinese-language placards that read “return my hard-earned money”, gathered at a Country Garden residential projects in Shangrao, Jiangxi, and at another project by the developer in Pudong, Shanghai on Saturday.
The demonstrations comes after Country Garden lowered the selling prices of its residential project, named Xinzhou Mansion , in Jiangxi from 10,000 yuan per square metre (US$1,883.43) to 7,000 yuan per square metre.
The Pudong project, One Mansion, saw prices slashed by 25 per cent to 26,000 yuan per square metre.
A spokesman for Country Garden said the price cuts were a regular promotion during the week-long national holiday in October.
“The discounts will only apply to loyal customers who buy one more flat in the two projects during the promotion period. It is a common practise in the industry to launch promotion activities at the so called ‘golden September and silver October’,” the spokesman told the Post on Sunday.
The spokesman acknowledged the protests had taken place, but said its facilities had not been damaged.
Country Garden cut the selling price at one of its residential developments by 1/3. Those who paid full price smashed the sales office. Similar incidents had happened before, and will again. It’s impossible to remove “the guarantee of principal”（刚性兑付）in China. pic.twitter.com/UxHFODYxmc
— Hao Hong 洪灝, CFA (@polarmcbear) October 6, 2018
Other property developers including China Evergrande Group and China Vanke also staged promotional activities during the holiday to drum up buying interest.
Developers in first-tier cities have adopted a number of marketing strategies to capitalise on the holiday season, which spans the Mid- Autumn Festival to the National Day holiday week beginning October 1, the traditional peak season for property sales.
These include the distribution of discount coupons worth as much as hundreds of thousands of yuan off that can be used to offset the price of a home purchase, referral schemes where a buyer gets a discount for introducing a second buyer, and an outright reduction in selling prices.
As developers roll out incentives, sales of second-hand homes in smaller mainland cities have tumbled in the past three months, signalling the end of a two-year market boom.