Second-hand home market shows signs of recovery

Cao Qian
Transactions of pre-own homes in Shanghai more than tripled in March from a mouth earlier, though volume and prices are down dramatically from last year.
Cao Qian

The city's existing housing market saw signs of recovery last month with transactions of pre-owned homes more than tripling from February, according to industry data released on Tuesday.

Citywide, about 15,000 pre-owned homes changed hands in March, a month-over-month surge of 235 percent. On a year-on-year basis, the number fell 41 percent, Shanghai Homelink Real Estate Agency Co said in a regular monthly report.

By value, existing homes worth a total of 44.7 billion yuan (US$6.3 billion) were sold, a month-over-month jump of 204 percent, but a year-over-year retreat of 41 percent.

By area, Nanqiao in Fengxian District, Pujiang in Minhang District and Sanlin in the Pudong New Area were the most popular among home seekers, with sales of 562, 382 and 343 existing homes respectively.

These pre-occupied homes cost an average 2.94 million yuan per unit, or 38,622 yuan per square meter, a decrease of 9 percent and 6 percent respectively from February, Homelink data showed.

"The price decrease was mainly due to a structural shift rather than a real cut in prices," said Yang Yulei, senior analyst with Homelink. "In fact, the local market has been regaining its strength at a quicker-than-expected pace, with March volume already equivalent to some 80 percent of the average sales registered in the last few months of 2019."

For the first quarter of 2020, around 31,000 existing homes, valued at some 95.1 billion yuan in total, were sold across the city, down 40 percent and 38 percent, respectively, from the same period a year ago. The average price of these homes stood at 3.05 million yuan per unit, or 39,151 yuan per square meter, up 4 percent and 3 percent year on year, Homelink data show.

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