Presale and new housing projects available for sale last quarter expanded 11.7 percent nationwide from three months earlier to NT$378.7 billion (US$13.65 billion) amid price hikes aided by a healthy economy and low interest rates, a survey by Cathay Real Estate Development Co (國泰建設) showed on Tuesday.
Asking prices picked up 9.11 percent on average across Taiwan, with the pace of growth exceeding 10 percent in New Taipei City, Tainan, Hsinchu City and Hsinchu County, it found, reflecting solid demand and rosy sentiment on the part of developers and builders.
The volume represented a 16.6 percent increase compared with a year earlier.
Photo: Hsu Yi-ping, Taipei Times
Heightening inflation expectations also led companies to raise selling prices for commodities, including building and decoration materials, and supported price hikes, despite waves of credit controls to cool the property market.
“Property transactions gained heat last quarter on the back of strong economic showings, excessive liquidity, low interest rates and worry over inflation,” the quarterly survey said.
However, concerns over fresh tightening measures and expectations of interest rate hikes later this year would help tame the market, it added.
Potential transaction prices averaged NT$345,800 per ping (3.3m2) during the October-to-December period, while concession rates shrank by 2.56 percentage points to 7.62 percent, it said, adding that the 30-day sales rates gained 0.56 percentage points to 17.07 percent.
By geographic breakdown, housing prices in Taipei grew 9.06 percent to NT$968,200 per ping and rose 11.2 percent in New Taipei City to NT$45,500 per ping, it said.
Tainan reported the biggest advance of 11.21 percent in new housing prices to NT$267,100 per ping, trailed by a 11.02 percent rise in Hsinchu City and Hsinchu County to NT$309,100 per ping, the survey said.
Retired land economics professor Chang Chin-oh (張金鶚), who helped conduct the survey, said housing prices rose to record highs nationwide, confirming property fever.
While housing prices might not see a correction in the near term, the uptrend would not last long, as global central banks are to reverse loose monetary policies and Taiwan’s government would take further measures to induce a soft landing, Chang said.
H&B Realty Co (住商不動產) said the latest price hikes have the backing of economic fundamentals and real demand.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co’s (台積電) announcement to build new plants in Tainan, Kaohsiung and Taichung would create well-paid jobs in those areas, causing housing prices there to surge by double-digit percentage points, H&B head researcher Jessica Hsu (徐佳馨) said.
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