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Home rates going through the roof: city dwellers
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17:03, September 26, 2009

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Shou Zhenwei, a 28-year-old working at a state-owned company in Beijing, said he felt the home prices had gone through the roof and to buy a home in Beijing was like an unrealistic dream for him.

Shou had to increase his budget from 1 million yuan (146,420 U.S. dollars) last year to nearly 1.5 million yuan this year to buy a second-hand two-bedroom apartment in downtown Beijing together with his fiancée.

A recent survey released by the People's Bank of China (PBOC), the central bank, showed that 65.2 percent of Chinese urban residents in 50 cities nationwide thought that home prices were "high and unacceptable" in the third quarter, up 2.8 percentage points from the second quarter.

About 41.5 percent of respondents predicted that home price in Chinese cities would continue to rise, said the PBOC.

Home price in Beijing would continue to rise moderately in next five years, Liu Xiaoguang, president and chief executive officer of Beijing-based Capital Group, a leading property and finance conglomerate, told Xinhua.

Shou is only one of the millions of Chinese rushing to buy an apartment this year, as they thought home prices had hit the bottom at the start of the year.

Chinese home sales volume and prices began to pick up since February, boosted by people's pent-up demands and their heartened confidence of the economy recovery.

Wang Ke, a sales manager at a Beijing-based IT firm, called himself "a housing slave", as he spent more than half of his salary on the housing mortgage every month, reported Saturday's China Daily.

Wang coughed up 1.2 million yuan for a 70-square-meter flat in Beijing within the fourth ring road by borrowing the down payment from his parents and paying the rest of the 20-year loan in equal monthly installments of 4,500 yuan.

Areas within the fifth ring road is considered the central city in Beijing.

Analysts held that home prices should not increase too quickly, otherwise it would add too much pressure to urban dwellers and hurt the long-term healthy development of the property industry.


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