Housing market remains subdued

SHANGHAI'S market for non-new houses lost its strength for a fourth consecutive month in July as "wait-and-see" sentiment among home seekers continued to bite.

SHANGHAI'S housing market for non-new properties lost ground for the fourth consecutive month in July as "wait-and-see" sentiment among home seekers continued to bite.

Around the city, some 11,700 units of existing houses changed hands last month, down 4.2 percent from June and a year-on-year plunge of 65.3 percent, Shanghai Homelink Real Estate Agency Co said in a report released on Monday.

"It's not surprise that weakness extended in the city's pre-used housing market for another month as strictly enforced tightening measures remained effective while scorching heat also made the scenario worse," said Lu Wenxi, senior analyst at Shanghai Centaline Property Consultants Co.

"We don't expect to see any rebound until September the earliest though only moderate recovery should be anticipated."

Neither home buyers nor individual owners are appearing eager to clinch a deal, with the latter most likely offering a discount of between 3 percent and 5 percent, or a price cut of up to 7 to 8 percent in very few cases, according to Lu.

Shanghai's housing market kicked off the year with just over 9,000 units of sales in both January and February. It then jumped to 19,400 units in March — closest to the 20,000-unit threshold that is often considered the criteria for a normal performance —and has plunged southward since then.


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