Business / Economy

China's home prices, sales expected to stabilize

By Hu Yuanyuan ( Updated: 2014-04-29 21:43

China's property transactions and home prices will stabilize or see a slight increase in 2014, but a regional divergence will be more obvious, a white paper by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences said on Tuesday.

Although the country's real estate market has cooled down amid a strong wait-and-see sentiment this year, the paper said home sales are still expected to grow at a level similar to 2013, thanks to consumers' income increase and the strong demand fueled by urbanization.

The change in home prices, it said, largely depends on government policies and the capital market performance.

If the property tax could be levied, the investment-oriented purchase could be further squeezed, while the supply-demand imbalance could be improved, thereby largely reining in the price increase, according to the paper.

The property tax will probably be expanded to other key cities this year, based on the experience of the pilot program in Shanghai and Chongqing, it said.

Meanwhile, the central government will establish differentiated real estate policies. For instance, the home purchase restriction will persist in the country's first-tier cities such as Beijing and Shanghai, but could be removed in some smaller cities with an oversupply, the paper said.

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