Existing home index dips again in September

Second-hand residential market mostly flat, despite jump in transaction volume. Properties under 3 million yuan account for majority of sales.

Shanghai's existing housing index lost steam for the third straight month in September, despite moderately recovering sales.

The index, which tracks month-on-month price changes in 130 areas across the city, dipped 0.15 percent, or 4 points, to a reading of 3,918, the Shanghai Existing Housing Index Office said in its regular monthly report released on Thursday.

Citywide, about 21,220 pre-occupied homes changed hands, an increase of 8.3 percent from August. On a year-on-year basis, the number jumped 52.7 percent.

Pre-owned homes costing less than 3 million yuan (US$421,777) accounted for 64.9 percent of total transactions. Those worth 5 million yuan or more made up 12.1 percent.

Prices of existing homes rose in 45 areas, fell in 56 and were flat in 29.

"September's performance was kind of flat considering the single-digit increase in transactions, with no major recovery in demand being expected," the office said. "Stability, as the main tone of the market, will probably prevail."

By area, Pujiang in Minhang District, Sanlin in the Pudong New Area and Nanqiao in Fengxian District were the three most sought-after areas among home seekers, with sales of 510, 490 and 440 existing homes respectively.

On the inventory side, a total of 62,937 units of pre-occupied homes were available on the market as of the end of September, a month-on-month decrease of 1.6 percent and a year-on-year drop of 18.3 percent, according to the office.

Between January and September, a total of 184,000 pre-occupied homes were sold across the city, an increase of 50 percent from same period a year ago. The average cost of an existing home stood at 38,304 yuan per square meter, a year-over-year dip of 4 percent, according to an earlier report by Shanghai Homelink Real Estate Agency Co.

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