|By George Betz, Fortune International
Real Estate Investments
China’s property “import & export” market-looking at
real estate investment in china and abroad.
Articles and descriptions of China, her
market and business potential tend
to use superlatives and generally an
expression of awe, sometimes fear, often
euphoria, but, never indifference.
The latest edition of the UK-based
magazine OPP (Overseas Property
Professional) will focus on Chinese
investors buying property abroad. Before I
draw conclusions, I thought, let’s first take
a look at the opposite and glimpse at the
data about buying property in mainland
China is a vast nation, with thousands
of years of history and a rich cultural
heritage. For property investors, much
of the interest is focused on Beijing and
Shanghai. China’s economic growth has
been staggering, and this has convinced
many to try and invest in the country,
despite the tight controls the government
likes to keep on the market. How has this
growth and subsequent state intervention
impacted the market?
House prices in China are on the rise,
with real estate web site ehomeday.com
reporting a 9.8 percent average increase in
the year to April 2010. According to official
government statistics looking at 70 cities
across the country, real estate prices rose
by 12.8 percent in the same period.
The government has introduced a
string of measures aimed at reducing
property speculation. Those wishing to buy
second homes must have a down payment
of at least 50 percent, and face mortgage
rates at 110 percent of the benchmark.
Obtaining mortgage finance is almost
impossible for non-locals, who must prove
at least one year of tax payments and social
security contributions. In November, it was
announced that foreigners would be limited
to one mainland property each.
The success of these measures
has been limited so far, with National
Statistics Bureau figures showing an 8.6
percent increase in urban property prices in October, the 17th consecutive
month of year-on-year gains........
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