Housing policy easing, falling yuan to attract young Hongkongers to 'Greater Bay Area' cities of Zhuhai, Zhongshan and Guangzhou

By Pearl Liu pearl.liu@scmp.com / https://www.scmp.com/business/article/3015040/housing-policy-easing-falling-yuan-attract-young-hongkongers-greater-bay?utm_medium=partner&utm_campaign=contentexchange&utm_source=EdgeProp | June 21, 2019 11:57 AM SGT
More young Hongkongers looking to get on to the property ladder are expected to seek homes in the "Greater Bay Area" cities of Zhuhai, Zhongshan and Guangzhou, as a result of policy easing and a depreciating yuan, property agents have said.
The agents said they have witnessed a twofold year-on-year increase in home sales in these cities, while enquiries from Hong Kong buyers looking to buy apartments in 70-year-lease projects have also gone up.
"We are seeing more inquires from young Hongkongers in their 20s and 30s, who are considering working in mainland China and would like to buy a home here," said Andy Chan of Qunxi Properties, a Zhuhai broker that focuses on Hong Kong clients.
In just two weeks this month, Chan has sold seven new homes in Zhuhai to buyers from the special administrative region. "Previously, seven deals would qualify as best monthly performance," he said.
Guangzhou, on June 1, removed a requirement of handing in proof of the payment of one year's social insurance for Hongkongers looking to buy property.
On May 5, the Zhongshan Housing and Urban-Rural Development Department said that as long as homebuyers from Hong Kong and Macau paid half year's social insurance they could buy a 70-year-lease apartment.
Home sales in Zhuhai saw a 77 per cent week-on-week increase to 1,404 units for the week starting May 27. The home purchase policy relaxation, announced three days earlier, is expected to boost these numbers.
"Projects close to the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, for example in Hengqin or those within 10-20 minutes ride to the bridge, are particularly of interest to Hong Kong buyers," Chan said.
He said he expected better sales in the coming months as the yuan is expected to weaken further. "It is a good time, as a stronger Hong Kong dollar will stimulate spending on mainland China property. We can see at least 5 per cent more buyers from Hong Kong, as there is a lot of pent-up demand in the market," he said.
The yuan has devalued by 8...