Beijing to help with purchase of homes
In a new measure to stabilize the housing market, Beijing is planning to introduce homes with joint property rights shared between the government and buyers.
A document published by l ocal authorities on Thursday to solicit public opinion says that individual buyers will be able to buy a share of a house but still have the full “right of use.”
Chen Zhi, secretary-general of Beijing’s real estate association, said the new homes are meant to be part of the city’s long-term housing controls, making the system fairer by allowing more people to buy their own homes.
The policy has several restrictions. Buyers and their families cannot already own homes in their name. Single buyers must be at least 30 years old, and a family can apply for only one home.
“The new housing policy clearly targets households that have difficulties in purchasing a home,” said Liu Weimin, a researcher with the State Council Development Research Center.
Deng Liang, a Beijingbased lawyer, said the new homes would better satisfy housing demand while curbing speculation. The government offers support in areas such as land prices and policies, while holding a share of the property rights, and buyers must pay a portion of the price according to their share of the rights.
Five years after purchase, owners can sell their shares based on market price, but the government or its assigned management agencies have right of first refusal to buy them back.
Zhao Xiuchi, a professor at the Capital University of Economics and Business, said while it is more economical to rent, considering current high prices, people still prefer to buy.
The new policy will also help ease traffic in Beijing as people with local hukou (residence permits) or those that work within a district would enjoy priority in buying new homes within that district, according to Zhao.
Liu Weimin said the policy was key to Beijing’s plan to create a world-class, harmonious and livable metropolis, as it stipulated that at least 30 percent of the homes would be offered to “new Beijingers”, referring to people without a Beijing hukou but stable jobs in the city.
China has recently taken a set of measures to stabilize the housing market and curb speculation. On July 17, authorities in Guangzhou decided to give tenants and homeowners equal rights to local education resources.
In many cities, the right to attend schools is limited to homeowners’ children rather than those of tenants. Guangzhou is the first top-tier city to grant such rights to tenants.
On July 20, a notice was issued by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development and other government departments saying that measures would be taken in cities with net population inflows, including increasing rental housing supplies and setting up a government-backed home rental service.