Changzhou Denies Ghost City Reports

There are some positive articles on real estate in China in the mainland press, refuting the narrative on ghost cities.

Here's a good foreign report from late in 2013. This article is a good summary of all the reasons to be skeptical about ghost city claims. China has been building ghost cities, ghost highways, ghost malls and ghost airports for years, but in most cases they eventually filled up. Many foreigners mistook empty buildings for disasters, but the disaster did not arrive. Eventually though, if demand doesn't come to the rescue, there will be a disaster, and that's the trillion yuan question being debated today.

How A 4.5 Million Person City Was Named A Ghost Town
One of the pitfalls of journalists covering China’s “ghost cities” is that just looking at apartment complexes is not enough to tell the story of them. I discovered early on in my ghost city investigations that just because an apartment complex or city district looks finished doesn’t mean that residents are being permitted to move in, and it’s far too easy to call a place deserted long before it’s even opened its doors. Back in March, I went into real estate offices in Xinyang posing as an expatriot with a Chinese wife who was looking to buy property. I was taken seriously, I was shown around, and then I was told that I wouldn’t be able to move in until 2015. Even though properties were being bought and sold nobody could actually live in them yet — they were more like stocks being traded than places to live, which is something that has come to characterize China’s housing market at this juncture.

Here is a recent Chinese report. The city and residents deny ghost town reports, but some of the explanations for only seeing 30% of the apartments lit up are not positive for the long-term, such as parents buying a house as a wedding gift for their child years in advance.

鬼城常州探秘:"不存在泡沫 楼市根本都没疯过 (Changzhou Ghost Town Invesigation: A Bubble Does Exist, No Madness Here)
In early 2014, caused by pieces of the satellite photos, a lot of reports about China "ghost town" appears in many foreign media reports. In these photos, a lot of new urban district was empty, no commercial support, no flashing lights at night, from the surface, the "ghost town" of the title is indeed very image.
Out about the Chinese media named "ghost town" in Changzhou City, Jiangsu Province, impressively.

So, Changzhou City real estate market is what kind of operating conditions, media coverage of the issue whether the vacancy rate is the economic bubble burst, or otherwise it due? Recently, the "economy" reporter walked into the legendary New "ghost town" - Changzhou City, Jiangsu Province, to find out.
Prices to collapse?

In previous reports on the real estate market in Changzhou, Agile project Xinghewan sales price of concern. This is known as Changzhou top luxury items, on the basis of its pre-sale price of 11,000 yuan per square meter of a direct price to almost half of the opening, even down to the individual floors of more than 5,000 yuan, which is almost 60% discount. How such a change is not astounding. Thus also, came the news of the collapse of housing prices in Changzhou.

The collapse of housing prices often mean the local real estate market bubble has been very serious. So how do the actual situation? This is a project in Changzhou individual behavior or a sign of the collapse of the real estate market as a whole?

Agile Star River project is located in Changzhou Xinbei, Changzhou City in recent years focus on the development of a high-tech development zones as the basis of the administrative area. The project is located in the bustling commercial district. However, a substantial price cut February 21, 2014 announced to the outside world, and for a time had Changzhou printing market "to collapse" speculation.

Reporters repeatedly to contact Mr. Shao Qing, director of marketing of the project, in its reply to the outside world in the unity of the media, the project price Shao Ching characterized as "an isolated incident" and that the move is just the company's strategic plan, aimed at quick return of funds.

Shao Qing mouth "isolated incident" with the real estate Changzhou independent observers in mountain views are consistent, in addition Yue also believe in Agile actual manipulator, the project location of the project was doomed to the fate of the price, "product type design too large, in the face of a single target customers and narrow. "

In an interview with reporters, removing more high-end projects currently taking markdowns means, the Changzhou City in the sale of real estate projects, mainly to owner-occupied residential real estate sales have started a price war, the new disc is more concentrated in Wujin District REF markdowns advertising everywhere, but the margin of preference are in the hundreds of dollars.
According to data provided Changzhou Soufangwang data monitoring center show that in March 2014, Changzhou, 4398 sets of real estate transactions, closing an area 471,900 m2, the chain rose to 31.28%, representing a decrease of 22.34%; prices, March traded real estate transactions Price 6904 yuan / m2, the chain rose to 6.91 percent, down 1.18 percent year on year.

As can be seen, Changzhou property prices in March rose significantly qoq volume, price changes are not large floating. Visible, individual behavior Agile Xinghewan Changzhou did not have the related impact on the overall operation of the real estate market.
Cool the real estate market as a whole
So, the real estate market is currently Changzhou what operating conditions?
According to data Changzhou City Housing Authority to provide housing support and show that in just the last in 2013, the city's real estate sales 8,311,000 m2 (82356 units), an increase of 4.44% and 8.22% respectively. Average transaction price, in 2013, the city's real estate transaction price of 7070 yuan / m2, an increase of 1.46%; Among them, the city's commercial housing transaction price is 6883 yuan / m2, an increase of 3.53 percent. Urban real estate transaction price of 7237 yuan / m2, an increase of 2.23%, respectively.
"Over the years, the real estate market in terms of volume Changzhou or transaction price, it has been in a relatively stable state." Soufangwang Changzhou Wang, general manager positions in an interview with reporters expressly.

Another set of data provided by the Housing Authority of Changzhou, in 2013, the city approved the sale of commercial housing area 12,493,100 m2, an increase of 22.61%; commodity housing pre-approved area 9,866,500 m2, an increase of 25.54%. Among them, the urban real estate pre-approved area 10,244,200 m2, an increase of 16.33%; commodity housing pre-approved area 7,949,700 m2, an increase of 17.67%. New supply of urban housing in the province ranked third, behind Nanjing, Suzhou.

"According to our statistics, last year the property market are basically Changzhou month 240,000 m2 of sales area, the average in recent years, such a data almost Changzhou property market has always been such a situation, we Mopai situation at the end of show opened in the beginning of 2014, the real estate market inventory Changzhou housing stock is more than 10 million m2, properly told, is a period of two years to go. "Wang said positions.

Period of two years to go for a real estate market, it is a normal operating state controlled, but the data has been questioned on the mountain, "the source of this data is based in Changzhou City Housing Authority official data, but there are a a statistical note that Changzhou City Housing Authority data inside, in fact, contains a salable area of ​​Changzhou City in the demolition process is also part of the residents moved listings, this part of the procedures for transfer as long as no listings will be displayed in the Pre-sale and sale listings there, but in fact, this part of the housing stock should not belong in the sale area. "

But anyway, the real estate market is currently Changzhou oversupply phenomenon does exist. Latest statistics in March 2014 showed Changzhou city's housing new supply of 838,600 m2, the chain increased by 524,300 m2, rose as high as 166.86%, where housing supply 656,700 m2, the chain increased by 349,700 m2, rose to 113.86% , closing an area of ​​380,800 m2, oversupply is very obvious. Supply and demand ratio is currently 1.72:1.

"Changzhou City real estate market is too competitive, especially. Locals to buy a house this year, demand has gradually decreased in the small town of Changzhou, foreigners accounted for less than half the house harder to sell." In an interview with reporters , a lot of the sales office sales staff expressed such thoughts.

For this, the real estate industry in Changzhou also does not mince words, Wang positions in view, the development of Changzhou, although in recent years the real estate market has been in a steady state, but appeared weak state this year has been very obvious.

"But this being can explain the situation in Changzhou with Erdos, the tree are two completely different types. Erdos is obviously caused by the bursting of the asset bubble, and in Changzhou, basically there is no bubble." Wang said positions.

Similarly, in the mountain, also holds a similar view, "there is not a demand falters bubble appears, Changzhou property market had not even mad."

"From the demand is concerned, Changzhou city in recent years as a result of the construction, resulting in many farmers Wujin District, in the demolition process, are given a set of basic or more housing units, this part of the house is vacant is understandable, but in the case of the real estate market overall demand does not have a big increase, the cumulative supply of a large area of ​​land, the status of the real estate market will certainly exacerbate the oversupply. "in Yue said.

Changzhou eyes of the "ghost town"

"About the 'ghost town' reports, we Changzhou municipal government attaches great importance to the relevant departments of our organization specifically on this issue conducted a survey and analysis, in our view, a number of foreign media coverage and national media is biased. Basic Changzhou 'ghost town' phenomenon is not true. "Changzhou Municipal Party Committee Propaganda Department, Deputy Director of Information Services, Xue Jing in the" economic "reporters clearly put forward their point of view.

According to the reporter field survey found Changzhou building construction projects on sale in the new disc is relatively concentrated with the new North Wujin two vacant urban phenomenon does exist, and the corresponding low lighting at night is already evident in some cell Check the delivery status for some time, but the whole building down was observed, the number of air-conditioning plug assembly machines will also be able to reach two or three percent, a large number of houses or in uninhabited vacant.

Interestingly, in Changzhou, about the "ghost town" is almost one-sided presentation of a critical attitude. In an interview with reporters, whether it is independent observers or participants in the industry project, or an ordinary citizen, buyers are considered "ghost town" title Changzhou can not afford.

Changzhou Jetta taxi drivers master Yu'e company in Changzhou, a taxi driver has been nearly a decade in her impression of the new district in recent years have really a lot, and some cell "really did not see a few night lights of. "She even told reporters that, in some locations is good, the whole disc sold, turnkey cell has two or three years, only 30% or so of night lighting rate.

"But, as you may not know Changzhou outsiders who buy a house characteristics." Yu'e said. In Changzhou, the average family will buy the marriage room early to spare the children, "the children to school when he had bought, impossible within this house a few years to live." In addition, Li Yu'e also introduced, Changzhou people buy a Obviously features, even if their own homes, it will not be finished immediately after buying to stay, take at least six months or a year to put the house, "in addition to taste, scattered formaldehyde."

This phenomenon has also been an independent researcher in Changzhou Real Estate Yue mentioned many times, in his opinion, this should be submitted to the new site in Changzhou district after lighting rate is less important or even the main reason.

"Some indeed exist inside the cell phenomenon investments, but very seldom., After which some people buy a finished room will certainly be placed, will not even be leased to decorate simple, because this place is very strange Changzhou, if After buying the house you lived people, then certainly we should sell devalued, even not sell. "in Yue said.

In the eyes of Changzhou, Changzhou vacant property is a naturally occurring phenomenon, with Changzhou geographical location, urban culture are closely linked, and can not hang up the "ghost town" hat. "If you say 'haunted house', it does exist, but the 'ghost town' certainly does not exist." Yu Yue joked.

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