Sales rates for presale and newly completed houses in northern Taiwan averaged 45.77 percent last year, an increase of 8 percentage points from 2017, as the market continues to improve, the Chinese-language Housing Monthly (住展雜誌) reported yesterday.
While the figures reflect an improved sentiment among developers and buyers, they also suggest increased pressure to move unsold houses, the magazine said.
“The sales rate stood at 45.77 percent, not far off from the 50 percent mark indicating a bull market,” the magazine’s research manager, Ho Shih-chang (何世昌) said.
The market is likely to have bottomed out in 2016 and staged a slow recovery since then, Ho said.
Developers and builders in 2016 sought to offer price concessions, as well as free furniture and decor, to stimulate sales, but have become increasingly inflexible, Ho said, adding that buyers might no longer have the upper hand once the sales rate climbs to 50 percent.
Hsinchu reported the highest sales rate of 59 percent last year, outperforming other cities in northern Taiwan, as a technology boom raised resident’s incomes, encouraging more housing transactions, Housing Monthly said.
Hsinchu is home to the Hsinchu Science Park (新竹科學園區) and the world’s largest critical component manufacturers.
Sales rates rose to 68 percent in East District (東區) and 64 percent in Siangshan District (香山區) where house prices are relatively affordable, it said, adding that sales rates were less than 50 percent in districts with prices of more than NT$300,000 (US$9,730.78) per ping (3.1m2).
Taipei reported sales of 6,033 presale and new housing units, raising its sales rate from 33 percent to 46 percent, the magazine said.
The sales rate surpassed 50 percent in the districts of Wanhua (萬華), Zhongzheng (中正) and Songshan (松山), but hovered at just more than 30 percent in Daan (大安) and Neihu (內湖), it said.
Affordability accounts for the difference, Ho said.
New Taipei City fared similarly with a sales rate of 46 percent, or 10,870 units, the report said.
Presale and new houses in the districts of Tucheng (土城), Sanxia (三峽) and Lujhou (蘆洲) proved more popular than in Tamsui (淡水), Rueifang (瑞芳) and Bali (八里), it said.
In addition to affordability, convenient locations play an important role, Ho said.
Keelung lagged behind other cities with a sales rate of 33 percent, weaker than in 2017, the report said.
Despite better sales rates, the pressure is building to move unsold houses as their number is increasing, limiting room for price hikes, Ho added.
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