China's Spring Festival home sales drop year on year

08:12, February 11, 2011      

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Home sales in China are typically abysmal during the Spring Festival holiday as people enjoy being with their family rather than selling or buying homes, but this year sales were even worse than usual.

In Beijing, the existing-home sales of the 5i5j Real Estate Service dropped about 40 percent from last Spring Festival, according to the company's vice president Hu Jinghui.

"Many people came to look at our houses, but there were very few transactions," Hu said.

In Nanjing, the capital of eastern China's Jiangsu Province, new homes bought during the holiday dropped 37.1 percent to only 39 units from last Spring Festival, a five-year low.

In Hangzhou, the capital of eastern China's Zhejiang Province, home buyers rushed to cancel their home purchase contracts.

During the holiday, a total of 55 contracts were canceled by Hangzhou buyers, which pushed sales into the negative, according to a local home sales website (www.hzfc365.com).

On Jan. 26, the central government raised the minimum down payment requirement for the purchase of a second home to 60 percent of the property's value, previously set at 50 percent, to curb property market speculation.

One day later, the State Council, or China's cabinet, approved the trial launch of a property tax in Shanghai and Chongqing.

Source: Xinhua
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