Thu, Jul 15, 2010 - Page 12 News List

Fights over land in Taipei continue to push prices up

Mixed bag While the value of land sold so far this year approaches the total value for last year, commercial properties are seeing much slower sales

By Joyce Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

The fight over land in the greater Taipei area among land developers and construction companies will cause further price hikes for well-located properties, contrary to what the central bank hopes to see, executives of real estate consultancy DTZ Debenham Tie Leung (戴德梁行) said yesterday.

“The central bank’s efforts to contain property prices [in Taipei City and Taipei County] only work among small-sized property investors, never with big-time developers,” Charlie Yang (楊長達), director of real estate appraisal for DTZ, told a media briefing.

20 percent jump

For example, among land deals in Taipei County’s to-be-­developed subcenter of Sinjhuang (新莊) for the first half of this year, the closing unit price for both residential and commercial land has jumped by more than 20 percent on a quarterly basis, he said.

In Taipei City, plots of residential land auctioned off in the first quarter closed between NT$950,000 and NT$1.2 million (US$37,319) per ping (3.3m²), which further jumped to between NT$1.3 million and NT$1.5 million per ping in the second quarter, he said.

Record High

Such record high prices will translate into a unit price of up to NT$600,000 per ping in the satellite city for some to-be-built housing projects, he said.

If the pace of land price hikes continues, commercial land in Sinjhuang at future auctions will possibly net up to NT$2 million per ping, up from its range of between NT$1.3 million and NT$1.4 million per ping in the first quarter, he said.

Competition

Yang forecast stiff competition at an auction to be organized by the Taipei County Government next Friday to liquidate 12 parcels of residential land in Sinjhuang.

The 12 plots of land, totaling 7,887 ping with a combined asking price of NT$7 billion, are likely to close for more than NT$14 billion, or an average unit price of NT$1.8 million per ping, he said.

The realtor’s statistics show that in the first half of the year, plots of land with a total value of NT$56.9 billion have been auctioned off nationwide, close to last year’s total of NT$57.5 billion.

The fight for land in Sinjhuang has showed no signs of easing, while that in Taipei County’s Linkou (林口) is also building up steam, Yang said.

The agency’s statistics also showed that a total of NT$53 billion in commercial properties had changed hand as of Tuesday, which Yang said is still far from last year’s full-year value of NT$100.3 billion.

Its statistics also found that the monthly rental of Grade A offices in Taipei saw flat growth to average NT$2,320 per ping in the second quarter, with the vacancy rate climbing slightly to 12.1 percent.

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