Wed, Dec 03, 2014 - Page 13 News List

Property transactions fall on election uncertainties

SUSTAINED LOW:Given the election results and the Cabinet reorganization due to take place, real-estate transactions seem unlikely to pick up in the near future

By Crystal Hsu  /  Staff reporter

Property transactions contracted 24.1 percent last month from a year earlier as potential buyers adopted a wait-and-see attitude ahead of the nine-in-one elections on Saturday last week, government data showed.

The cautious sentiment might persist as the Cabinet reshuffle unfolds, bucking earlier expectations of a quick recovery following the end of the elections, analysts said.

Real-estate transfers totaled 17,871 units last month, down by 24.1 percent from the same period last year and 4.8 percent from October, as the local elections dampened buying interest, said Andy Huang (黃舒衛), a researcher at Evertrust Rehouse Co (永慶房屋), the nation’s largest broker by number of offices.

While some sellers are more willing to soften prices following the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) drubbing at the polls, others are breathing a sigh of relief after the government have put a halt on pushing major policies, including plans to raise income taxes on capital gains from property deals, Huang said.

Property transactions dropped to 2,286 units in Taipei last month, shrinking 23.4 percent from the year-earlier level and 7.7 percent from October, city government data showed.

Small, old and relatively affordable apartments underpinned trading in the capital’s Zhongshan (中山), Neihu (內湖) and Wenshan (文山) districts, Evertrust said.

New Taipei City fared weaker with a year-one-year plunge of 37.9 percent last month to 4,431 deals, though the completion of new projects raised the month-on-month comparison by 2 percent, according to government statistics.

More new home projects in Sinjhuang (新莊), Tamsui (淡水) and Sijhih (汐止) districts of New Taipei City are due to be completed in coming months, which would be favorable for the city’s property trading figures, according to Sinyi Realty Inc (信義房屋), the nation’s only listed broker.

The annual decline eased to 13.4 percent in Taoyuan County with 3,299 units, or a 6.2 percent increase from October, as the county gains popularity as a home location, Sinyi said.

The county is slated to be upgraded to a special municipality on Dec. 25, making it more attractive and relatively affordable for potential home buyers, Sinyi said.

Property transactions retreated 15.8 percent year-on-year to 3,666 units in Greater Taichung last month, government data showed, as home prices grow increasingly unaffordable in central Taiwan.

Home deals dropped 26.1 percent to 1,433 in Greater Tainan and 17.4 percent to 2,756 in Greater Kaohsiung last month, compared with last year’s figures, separate land agencies said.

The market might consolidate in the short run until the Cabinet shakeup settles, Taiwan Realty Co (台灣房屋) said.

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