Apartment rents drop with falling demand
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Apartment rents drop with falling demand
Author:   Article source: Shenzhen daily  Hits:962  Add time:2009-5-28  
APARTMENT rents in Shenzhen are decreasing despite the steady increase of property prices over the past few months.

    Rents in April dropped by 2.4 percent compared with March due to increased apartment vacancies and decreased demand for leases, according to statistics released by Shi Hua Real Estate Co. Ltd.

    The company said that the leasing market would not recover in the near future.

    Many new apartments were built in 2007. Some tenants gave up their rental homes and moved into their new homes at the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009, which resulted in increased vacancies, according to a report by the Shenzhen Jiajiafa Housing Financing Center.

    Moreover, closures and layoffs at companies also resulted in vacancies because some employees left Shenzhen after failing to land another job, the report said.

    For example, in the Huaqiangbei area, Futian District, the number of people giving up rental units from January through April increased by 30 percent compared with the same period last year, said Yuan Jianmei, a manager at Jiajiafa. In addition, the length of time rental units remained empty after being vacated had gone from 15 days to a month, Yuan said.

    “If owners didn’t reduce their prices, the waiting period would be even longer,” Yuan said.

    Drops in Bao’an and Longgang District were even sharper than inside the special economic zone, said Lin Jiale, general manager of the Shi Hua Real Estate.

    “There have always been many new houses built outside the special economic zone so apartments were normally more difficult to lease, taking one to two months to find a tenant,” Lin said. “But it’s now become even harder, and the vacancy period has grown to about three months.”

    Even the owners of much cheaper apartments built in urban villages have found it difficult to lease, which made the situation for commercial residential buildings even worse.

    “Three of my six apartments have been empty this year,” said a landlady, who only gave her name as Yang and owns apartments in an urban village in Longhua, Bao’an District. “I was asking 600 yuan (US$88) a month for a three-room apartment, larger than 70 square meters, but tenants still wanted me to drop the price. This year’s leasing market is really difficult.”

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