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clock 10-10-2019
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China's 'Golden Week': Property Sales Plunge in Major Cities

There has been nothing glittering in China's property market as sales in major cities of the Middle Kingdom experienced "one of their worst 'golden week' holidays in years", reported the South China Morning Post (SCMP) today.

Used to describe the week long holiday after China's National Day, sales of new homes in the capital of Beijing (pictured) fell to their lowest level since 2014's national day golden week, SCMP reported using figures from property information portal Zhuge.com.

The week-long holiday period is "traditionally" a peak period for property sales but there was scant interest from buyers this year as many Chinese were reluctant to "pursue big investments" as China's economy sails into choppy waters owing to a trade war with Uncle Sam.

The report also stated that things were made worse by stricter mortgage conditions and laws to curb property prices   

The Hong Kong-based daily also revealed that only 190 transactions took place in Beijing's primary residential market during the holiday period. This represents a drop of 19% compared to last year.

Over at the secondary market, just 41 homes were sold, "the second poorest golden week sales performance in the capital in the past five years", wrote the SCMP.

“People do not want to commit in big investment now, like purchasing any homes, as market sentiment has cooled quickly since March.

“Most owners prefer travelling during golden week holiday instead,” Clement Luk, a director for east China at Centaline Property, said.

“Potential buyers will find it more difficult to apply for mortgage loan from banks as their quotas have been met or nearly full,” he added.

Could Chinese property buyers be enticed to put money in Malaysian real estate instead?

Early last month, Housing and Local Government Minister Zuraida Kamaruddin proposed the Malaysia My Second Home MM2H scheme be used to attract buyers from China and Hong Kong.

She said this could be a solution to the issue of surplus of high-end homes in Malaysia.

Chinese property buyers are also heading to Singapore. Apartments in the Lion City worth at least S$10 million (RM30 million) are proving to be very popular with Chinese nationals, according to a report by Reuters.

The report stated that that sales of such homes have hit an 11-year high, driven by “increased demand from Chinese millionaires seeking safe-haven assets”, according to property consultants OrangeTee & Tie.

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