Real estate market gathers steam in April

Cao Qian
New home sales by area in Shanghai jumped by more than 62 percent last month. Average prices also gained by over 5 percent, recent market data show.
Cao Qian

Sentiment among home seekers and real estate developers built steadily in April as the city's new housing market continued to restore normalcy, the latest market data showed.

By area, the amount of new residential properties sold, excluding government-subsidized affordable housing, jumped 62.3 percent from March to 612,000 square meters in April, according to a regular monthly report released on Wednesday by Shanghai Centaline Property Consultancy Co.

"Sales of new residential properties climbed week by week in April with luxury projects recording outstanding performances," said Lu Wenxi, Centaline's senior research manager. "The market strength is expected to extend through May amid rapidly recovering new supply across various segments."

The average price of a new home, as a result, rose 5.3 percent from a month earlier to 59,992 yuan (US$8,444) per square meter.

Across the city, one development in downtown Putuo District dwarfed all last month after selling 23,063 square meters, or 235 apartments, for an average price of 101,992 yuan per square meter. It was most immediately trailed by two projects, one in outlying Baoshan District and the other in the remote Nanhui area, which unloaded 176 and 244 units, respectively, both for an average price of around 60,000 yuan per square meter.

Notably, three other projects in last month's top 10 list, including one each in Huangpu, Hongkou and Xuhui districts, bore price tags of over 100,000 yuan per square meter. The cheapest one, which ranked No.5 and was located in remote Fengxian, unloaded 140 units for an average cost of less than 22,000 yuan per square meter, according to Centaline data.

On the supply side, about 949,000 square meters of new homes covering all segments from luxury to low-end were launched into the market last month, compared with merely 43,000 square meters released in March and zero new supplies in February.

For May, new home sales may reach 800,000 square meters, according to Centaline's forecast.

During the recent Labor Day holiday, some 157,000 square meters of new houses were sold around the city, Centaline data showed.

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