Six Cities Summoned by Beijing to Discuss Real Estate Controls Ratchet up Policies

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Six of the twelve municipal governments that were recently summoned to Beijing by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development for discussions have stepped up their controls on the real estate market.

MOHURD recently met with representatives from the municipal governments of twelve Chinese cities, including Changchun, Chengdu, Dalian, Guiyang, Kunming, Foshan, Haikou, Harbin, Sanya, Taiyuan and Xi’an, in order to stress the need to maintain the real estate market controls that first kicked off in early 2017.

The real estate controls that the Beijing municipal government took the lead in launching in March 2017 have included price restrictions, purchase restrictions and sales restriction, as well as caps on property landing by banks.

Domestic media now reports that six of the 12 cities recently summoned to Beijing by MOHURD have stepped up their real estate control policies.

The Sichuan province capital of Chengdu has taken the lead, with the city’s property administration department unveiling the “Notice Concerning Further Improving Our Municipal Real Estate Market Control Policies” (关于进一步完善我市房地产市场调控政策的通知).

The Notice shifts the target of purchase restrictions from natural persons or individuals to entire households. Under the notice any commercial residential property or pre-owned housing purchased within the confines of the Chengdu municipal limits can only be transferred at least 3 years after the property title is obtained.

The Notice also lifts the bar for homebuyers, requiring that purchasers who have not held a Chengdu household registration for 24 months or more be stably employed in the city and make continuous social insurance payments for at least 12 months, in order to qualify for the purchase of new commercial residential property or pre-owned homes.

According to officials from the Chengdu municipal government, the lack of requirements that buyers have a record of social insurance payments in the city has led to some speculative demand entering the local market.

In addition to Chengdu, the other cities that have ratcheted up their real estate market controls include Changchun, Foshan, Harbin, Guiyang and Xi’an.

Municipal governments around China have already introduced as many as 120 real estate market control policies.

While in 2017 most of these controls were concentrated in first and second-tier cities, since the start of 2018 they have gradually shifted to third and four-tier urban centres.

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