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Shanghai’s home buyers have improved sentiment

REBOUND in sentiment among home buyers continued to extend in Shanghai last week but overall momentum in the market still remained lackluster, latest industry data showed.

The area of new residential properties sold, excluding government-funded affordable housing, rose 10.3 percent to 180,000 square meters during the seven-day period ended Sunday, Shanghai Centaline Property Consultants Co said in a report released today.

The outlying district of Jiading maintained its leading position for another week after recording sales of 35,000 square meters.

"Though sentiment improved for the second straight week and reached its year-to-date high again, momentum in general was still sluggish with month-to-date sales standing at around 540,000 square meters, a rather low figure for March which usually sees the first notable rebound in a year," said Lu Wenxi, senior manager of research at Centaline. "Weekly sales should pick up continually as new home supply is expected to rise over the next couple of weeks."

The average cost of new homes sold last week climbed 3.6 percent to 47,521 yuan (US$6,898) per square meter, Centaline data showed. More than 75 percent of the new houses sold last week cost 60,000 yuan per square meter and less, according to a separate research released by Shanghai Uwin Real Estate Information Services Co.

Notably, an apartment project in outlying Jiading District remained the most sought-after development for the third consecutive week after unloading 253 units at an average price of 31,142 yuan per square meter. So far in March, the project managed to sell a total of 670 units, compared to some 130 units registered at its closest counterpart.

On the supply side, some 76,000 square meters of new houses spanning three projects, majority of which costing around 40,000 yuan per square meter, were launched in the city last week, a drop of 24.2 percent from the previous seven-day period, Centaline data showed.


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