Northern Taiwan property market shows sluggish growth: poll

Taipei, The property market in northern Taiwan flashed a "yellow-blue" light again in July, pointing to sluggish growth amid caution over new sale listings, according to a recent poll published in the real estate magazine My Housing.

Citing the survey, the magazine said the housing index for northern Taiwan fell 0.4 points from the previous month to 32.2 points, remaining for the fifth straight month in the "yellow-blue' category, which is a range of 32-42 points.

The index covers major counties and cities in northern Taiwan such as Taipei, New Taipei, Keelung, Taoyuan, Hsinchu and Yilan, which account for more than 50 percent of the total residential and commercial property transactions in the country.

Under the magazine's color-coded system, red indicates overheating, yellow-red shows fast growth, green represents stable growth, yellow-blue signals sluggish growth, and blue indicates contraction.

Ho Shih-chang (???), a research manager at the magazine, said property developers appeared reluctant to put up new listings because it was the slow season for the local property market.

However, sales of newly constructed homes remained steady, propping up the broader property market in northern Taiwan, he said.

According to the survey, two of the six sub-indexes � those for listings of pre-sale residential properties and newly completed homes - dropped in July to 7.26 and 5.27, from 7.63 and 5.55, respectively, in June.

Three others -- the amount of property advertising, home price negotiations, and the number of visits by potential buyers -- remained unchanged at 4.18, 5.38 and 4.69, respectively, in July, the poll showed.

Ho said that amid concerns over the slow season, many property developers were unwilling to increase advertising spending, while some major construction firms were waiting out the slow period.

Bucking the downturn, the sub-index for home price negotiations rose to 5.46 in July from 5.12 a month earlier, the survey showed.

Ho noted that although the housing index was in a slide May to July, the score remained in the yellow-blue light category.

He said it might fall further to a blue light in the coming months, if buying is affected by political uncertainty ahead of the local government elections in November.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel