The country's property market has gotten off to a slower start this year than in 2013.
The number of homes sold in the first quarter in tier-one cities – Chinese property market jargon for the major cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Guangzhou – was more than 40 percent lower than during the same period last year, data released by China Index Academy on April 1 shows.
Transactions in the capital fell the most among the four cities, by 51 percent, followed by Guangzhou (43 percent), Shenzhen (38 percent) and Shanghai (36 percent).
Despite this, home prices in three of the four first-tier cities rose from the previous month. Home prices in Shanghai increased the most, by 0.99 percent. Beijing and Shenzhen also saw prices go up, by 0.93 percent and 0.77 percent respectively. The average price in Guangzhou fell by 0.29 percent.
Home prices in the large cities will increase by around 10 percent this year mainly because credit is harder to get than in recent years, Zhu Haibin, chief economist at JPMorgan China said in a recent report.
The property markets in second-tier cities – provincial capitals and the larger cities in each region – were also cooler in the first quarter than they were in the same period last year. The number of apartments sold was down 25 percent, the real estate research institution CRIC Group said in a report.