Market Overview

  • Shanghai is the largest city of the People's Republic of China and the eighth largest city in the world.
  • Shanghai is also known as the 'Paris of the East' and the 'Queen of the Orient'
  • The literal meaning of Shanghai is on top of the sea
  • In 2004, the Time magazine called Shanghai the 'world's most happening city.
  • Population: 18,455,391.
  • GDP rates (Shanghai 8%, China10% in 2010) are expected rise to 11% in 2011.

Shanghai Ready to Sizzle

The red hot Shanghai property market has seen massive surges in prices in recent years much to the delight of speculators. But now the government has decided to step in to cool things down a little.

The Government attempts to curb the Shanghai market come in the form of a trial tax on new residential property sales. This takes effect in the first quarter of 2011. Taxes are expected to be below 1% of the property value which experts say can be easily absorbed by wealthier speculators, as property prices are expected to increase by 5% to 7% in the city this year.

Trial property taxes on the luxury sector will also be introduced to the southwestern city of Chongqing.

The China Banking Regulatory Commission has also said it will prevent credit risk, liquidity risks and market risks in 2011 by controlling risk from local government financing vehicles and address risks in the real estate market.

What you need to know

To buy in Shanghai, foreigners have to prove they have lived in China for more than a year on a Z visa. Foreigners must also live in the property and are not allowed to sublet. Further to those regulations, Jing An, Xuhui, Baoshan and Pudong districts have banned second home buying to foreigners and overseas Chinese. Banks also restricted lending to buyers of third homes by increasing down payments to 50 per cent.

Property developers are not let off the hook either, they have to pay taxes of 5% on the selling price of residential buildings that are more than twice the average price from the previous year in the same area. This was imposed in 2010.

The Place to live?

Shanghai is divided by the Huangpu River into the Western Puxi and the Eastern Pudong. Foreigners have traditionally preferred to live in the Puxi district for its convenience to the business district, shopping areas and restaurants. The French Concession, Xintiandi, Gubei, Changning and Xuhui are among popular districts to live in. Popular housing to rent or buy range from new developments of apartments, town houses and villas but older properties are also popular.