Beijing luxury home prices at 17-month high

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 19 June, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 June, 2013, 4:31am

The average price of luxury homes in Beijing, excluding townhouses, jumped to the highest in 17 months in May, as wealthy buyers favoured bigger properties under the government's purchase restrictions, a local agency said.

Flats more expensive than 50,000 yuan (HK$63,000) per square metre sold for 53,329 yuan on average, 5 per cent higher than in April and rising for the fourth consecutive month, Yahao Real Estate Selling & Consulting Solution Agency said in a report. Total sales surged 28 per cent to 3.55 billion yuan, the realtor said.

New-home prices in Beijing rose by 3.1 per cent in April from the previous month, the biggest gain among the nation's four first-tier cities, as the capital's property curbs, the country's strictest, failed to deter homebuyers, according to SouFun Holdings.

Those curbs have included minimum down-payment requirements for second homes of 70 per cent and a ban on single-person households buying more than one residence.

"The super-rich buyers now like bigger, high-end properties more" as the government curbs make it more difficult to buy a second home, Gao Shan, Yahao's deputy general manager, said in the report. "The scarcity of core urban land resources is driving up the value of luxury homes."

Thirty-five out of 56 luxury projects that were already open to subscription managed to sell 323 flats last month in Beijing, compared with 325 apartments in April, according to Yahao.

No new luxury projects became available in May as local officials rejected presale permits for projects deemed too expensive and developers delayed sales, according to the report.