Hong Kong-listed Lai Fung pays record price for Shanghai parcel

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 10 July, 2014, 4:56am
UPDATED : Thursday, 10 July, 2014, 6:48am

Shanghai sold a small residential parcel to Hong Kong-listed Lai Fung Holdings at a record price yesterday, bucking the nationwide trend of a cooling real estate market.

The 6,885 square metre property, near the Huangpu River snaking through the city's financial hub, was sold for 577 million yuan (HK$724 million).

Excluding the 30 per cent reserved for affordable housing and 2 per cent for public facilities, the floor space cost of 85,810 yuan per square metre is a record for the country.

"It is a rare parcel, given the prime location. The developer will probably hold the property instead of selling it," said Lu Qilin, research head of consultancy Shanghai Deovolente Realty. "However, the record high price will not affect the souring sentiment in the real estate market."

After a bumper 2013, the mainland's property market soured this year because of a glut and tight credit conditions, with a rising number of auctions failing to sell parcels in recent weeks.

The Shanghai government is requiring Lai Fung to finish construction and get the homes ready for delivery in four years.

No pre-sale is allowed, the first time such a requirement is written into a government land auction document.

Each building in the project is capped at a maximum of 24 metres in height, which some analysts said means Lai Fung will have to target the very high-end market to make a profit.

The previous record for a land sale in Shanghai was set in 2010, when mainland developer Overseas Chinese Town bought a parcel at a cost of about 52,000 yuan per square metre.

Mainland developer Sunac China bought a property in Beijing for 70,000 yuan per square metre in 2013, adding to the mainland property market frenzy when sales hit a record last year.