Housing Affordability In Metropolitan China Economics Essay


In 1998, the authorities of People ‘s Republic of China is believed to hold abandoned the “ work-unit ” lodging allotment system and entirely privatized the lodging market. This resulted to increased residential monetary value which affected shanghai the most. Harmonizing to statistics taken in April 2011, new residential flats sold at around RMB 15,802 ( $ 226 ) per square metre in 10 chief urban metropoliss of China. In Shanghai, they were sold at around RMB 26,356 ( more than $ 376 ) per square metre. This is manner to much higher than in a batch of large metropoliss in many developed states. Many low and in-between income earners in China who live in Shanghai are challenged by the rise of lodging monetary values.

This thesis serves as a beginning to discourse the efficiency of low-cost units in Shanghai by utilizing certain standards which include

Offer and spread out the handiness of high quality units ;

Housing being readily available at a lower cost ;

Economic diverseness publicity in vicinity ; and

Encourage balanced growing in metropolitan.

Although the late released lodging plan in Shanghai has successfully targeted the low income group, set uping more assortments of lodging programs like inclusionary lodging will assist Shanghai profit in the coming old ages.


Research job

In 1998, China lunched its lodging market and made residential units commercial. The reforms were brought frontward so as to increase the handiness of houses to people. This resulted to increased standard floor per capita plus homeownership. China ‘s booming existent estate market captured a huge consideration from enterprisers and investors in the past decennary. Because of this, the purchasing monetary values of residential flats increased by 10.6 per centum and 31.4 per centum rise on existent estate investing annually. As a consequence, China was faced with overheated industry and lodging crisis.

Shanghai ‘s market value of new residential units accounted to 22 per centum of the gross value of entire lodging in the state in 2005. This metropolis has been the priciest lodging market place in China. The mean lodging monetary value in Shanghai was RMB 20,995 ( $ 300 ) per square metre in 2010. Many families in Shanghai have to set aside their one-year incomes for about 11 old ages before they can do first episode for a market rate unit. Thankss to the late released low-cost lodging plans, Shanghai abodes will non hold to salvage for that long.

Purpose and Research Question

The chief intent of this thesis is to detect some valid thoughts and schemes for the development of Shanghai ‘s low-cost lodging market. The thesis analyzes the current state of affairs of Shanghai ‘s development bespeaking what could assist the authorities and investors have an apprehension of the sensible lodging market.

The inquiries to be answered are ; why is it difficult for low and in-between income earners to come in existent estate market in Shanghai metropolis? What challenges does the authorities face when developing this market? Why is it indispensable to develop low-cost lodging? What substitutes does the authorities have when seeking to work out the incompatibility of low-cost lodging?

Choice of Study

Housing in Shanghai has been of great concern and this Drew my involvement sing the population of the metropolis. Bing the biggest metropolis by population in China, Shanghai is seeking to come up with low-cost lodging so that the low income earners can bask the privileged enjoyed by high income earner. The new lodging policy which encourages low rent is a new development in Chinese lodging market and I believe this will play an of import function in the coming old ages. I choose the subject to happen out how China can do this undertaking successful and how the whole state is traveling to profit as a whole.

Relevance of the job to Field of survey

Sociology being the survey of the society is relevant to the above job as human societal activity is being questioned and we try to acquire the solution as to why some people should populate in a hapless houses while we can come up with a program to assist do them populate in comfy houses at an low-cost rate. It besides tries to bridge the spread between the hapless and the rich. At the terminal of it all, everybody deserves to populate in a comfy house to minimise twenty-four hours to twenty-four hours emphasis.


This research is about the present economic factors in Shanghai existent estate market presuming that they will be no alteration in environment conditions during the period of the research. Because a batch of market state of affairss have non been incorporated in the survey, analysis consequence may merely be used in metropoliss like Shanghai. Since it is non possible to predicate internal and external economic system factor, a batch of premise is used when covering with existent estate market in the coming old ages.

Shanghai is one of the most urbanised metropoliss in China but it has a figure of factors that are really are barely found in other metropoliss for illustration civilization background and life style. This research is fit for Shanghai authorities civil order ‘s execution but can be difficult to use to other authorities of other metropoliss. It is difficult to come up with a lodging program that will work out the lodging job to the full and that will fulfill every individual.

Purposes and Aims

Purposes and aims act as the guiding tools for carry oning and completing the research so as to run into the projected intent of the survey. The chief purpose of this survey is to discourse the efficiency of low-cost lodging program for low and in-between income lodging system in Shanghai China. It besides aim at demoing the rating of ‘provider ‘ and ‘enabler ‘ attacks to grok the cardinal instrument in the alteration of lodging policies in the development states. Another purpose is to measure Shanghai ‘s lodging policy to demo how by adopting combination of schemes, affecting mutable steps, resources from private and public sector, it has struck a steadiness in lodging the metropolitan population. It has besides surfaced as an constituted existent estate industry in Far East.

The research will take on a instance survey of Shanghai ‘s low-cost lodging scheme that was late released and use the standards created from the lodging scheme of the old literature reappraisal in planetary model to measure the efficiency of the instance. The survey will get down by lucubrating on the advancement of lodging schemes in China and this will function as a background overview of low-cost lodging scheme growing in China.

Research Design

In this research, a questionnaire will be used to analyze the market rate of lodging and the mean net incomes of families in different groups who are the chief mark in Shanghai metropolis. The questionnaires will be given to tie in friends who work in infirmaries and existent estate companies because they fall under the immature family and go on to hold direct experience about Shanghai lodging position.

The questionnaire will be divided into four parts, where the first portion will be about the present lodging position of families. The inquiries will seek to happen out the present life position of different households. The 2nd portion will seek to acquire the ideal lodging system of the families while the 3rd portion will cover rental lodging. This is because many homeowners will prefer to lease impermanent before they can afford to acquire a house of their ain. The last portion will cover personal background and information.

After the questionnaire information is sorted out, an analysis will be carried out in 3 stairss which include

Calculating how many old ages a in-between income family would take to salvage the first episode for a house and how long it would take for all the payment to be made harmonizing to the information gotten from questionnaire.

Analyze how the payment period can be shortened and by how much.

A sensible period of hosing payment will be set up harmonizing to the computations and questionnaire information.

Chapter Two

Literature Review

Housing Affordability in Metropolitan China Overview

Since China ‘s economic reform in 1978, dramatic alterations have been experienced in the lodging market. Housing sector was non entirely privatized until early 1998 when public lodging system was terminated by the Cardinal Government. This resulted to dining in existent estate all over China and this tendency seems to go on for long despite there being planetary fiscal crisis.

Investings in lodging as a per centum of China ‘s gross domestic merchandise ( GPD ) stood at below one per centum before 1990s harmonizing to the estimations given by Goldman Sachs. This rose to around six per centum of gross domestic merchandise by the twelvemonth 2003 and has been the same up to now. Statistically, place ownership rate was around 84.3 per centum by the terminal of 2010, which surpassed the rate of a batch of developed states like 69.8 per centum in the United Kingdom and 68.2 per centum in the USA. Nonetheless, the rate may differ from 34.5 per centum to 97.6 per centum across China. A good illustration is a metropolis like Shanghai which had 36 per centum of the population owing places they lived in, in the twelvemonth 1997 which has presently risen to about 82 per centum of the population owing places. Because of the increasing rate of occupants having houses, the floor country of building houses has non been lest behind as it has increased. This has alleviated the relentless job of congestion and deprived populating status of urban people. In 1978, China had an norm of 3.6 square metres of floor country per capita, which is around 38.75 square pess. In 1998, it had 9.3 square metres which is about 100.1 square pess. Today, China has about reached 31.7 square metres which is about 341.22 square pess of floor country per capita. This is illustrated in figure 1.1

Average Floor Area

Per capita

Figure 1: China ‘s past 30 old ages mean floor country per capita

The drastic addition in lodging system available and rapid development of lodging market in China has non been in the same scope as the lodging demand, largely in the east coastal are and large metropoliss ( Zheng and Ren, 2011, pg 43 ) . Monetary values of houses grew at a high rate as compared to existent disposal income doing it about double between 1997 and 2007. In the twelvemonth 2009, the standard monetary value of houses increased from RMB 3,625 per square metre as it was in 2007 to RMB 4,600 per square metre, with a annual addition of 12 to 15 per centum. Market rate feasible lodging histories for about 40 per centum out of the entire suburban lodging stock and a farther 34.3 per centum are old “ work-unit ” lodging. Public rental houses and financed houses account merely for 7 per centum and 3.8 per centum severally ( Zheng, Man and Ren, 2009, pg 46 ) .

Metropolitan Renewal and Urbanization

The rate at which migration is taking topographic point in Chinese metropoliss is outstanding in modern times. Urbanization has extremely increased in China since the 1978 economic reforms. As figure 1.2 demonstrates, urbanisation has risen from 18 per centum in 1978 to a high degree of 30 per centum in 1995. In 2008, it had reached 46.6 per centum doing it possible for one to experience the speed of urbanisation when walking about busy metropoliss of China. Urban substructure programs, new residential edifices, elephantine Parkss and concern edifices are coming up at an exceeding high rate, reshaping the urban landscape of China drastically.

Figure 2: Urbanization Level in China

The urban population of China in 2000 was 454 million, which approximately 36 per centum of the state ‘s population was. It is expected that by 2030, the population of China will raise to around one billion and two-thirds of this population will be shacking in the urban countries. Urban population in China is turning by around 15 million people annually harmonizing to UN estimation. The urban country is besides increasing at a high rate of 43,200 square kilometers per twelvemonth. It is expected that by 2020, the land country of China ‘s urban Centres will make about 15, 013, 000 square kilometers. This is about 107 per centum of cultivable evidences in China ( Angel et al. , 2005, pg 77 ) .

Since China is among states that have the lowest per centums of cultivable evidences in the universe, the authorities had to come in and be strict on preservation of cultivable evidences so as to protect nutrient security and autonomy utilizing quota system ( Lichtenberg and Ding, 2007, pg 97 ) . The quotas have restricted land supply for urban development resulting in scarce supply of cheap lodging in a figure of urban countries ( Bertaud 2007, pg 64 ) . There being deficiency of equal land quotas for developing new lodging, a batch of local authorities focused on urban revival undertakings. A good illustration is when Beijing launched about 168 lodging revival undertakings between 1999 and 2000. It is estimated that about 5 million square metres of old adjustment infinites were substituted by about 14,500,000 square metre of building which were new. Entire investing in this undertaking was around RMB 46.9 billion ( Zhou 2002, pg 35 ) . 700 million square metres of residential houses were substituted and around 280,000 families ‘ resettlement took topographic point in Shanghai between 2000 and 2005. Most of the conformist urban revival undertaking derelict lodging affordability. Developers obtained the land at the market rate which was there by so and the local authorities did non step in to give developers any inducement to carry them to encompass low-cost lodging system in the new undertakings which they were working on.

Approximately all new lodging systems are presently put up for sale at market rate. In add-on, the booming existent estate market raises the cost of traveling proprietors populating in old place and in bend, the general capital status for urban revival procedure becomes really expensive. Because of the high market rate, most of the original occupants can non afford to come back to where they lived before the reclamation undertakings took topographic point despite holding been given a significant resettlement sum.

Affordability of Housing in China

In malice of the speedily increasing existent estate charges, Chinese authorization has failed to come up with its ain affordability arrows to estimate how moderately priced houses are in the state. Most of the developed states employ two cardinal arrows to measure the affordability of lodging. These arrows are Housing Price to Earning Ratio ( PE Ratio ) and Housing Affordability Index ( HAI ) .

Housing Price to Earning Ratio ( PE Ratio )

The Housing Price to Earning Ratio can be defined as the ratio of average house cost to the median of family earning. Table 1.1 outlines the four groups of affordability that is based on the rate of RE Ratio between

RE Ratio


Equal to or more than 5.1

Relentlessly unaffordable

Between 4.1 and 5.0

Critically unaffordable

Between 3.1 and 4.0

Reasonably unaffordable

Equal to or less than 3.0


Table 1: RE Ratio arrow and group of affordability

Housing Affordability Index ( HAI )

Since 1981, Housing Affordability Index ( HAI ) is published monthly in the USA by National Association of Realtors ( NAR ) . Borrowers make a first episode of 20 per centum and the bound mortgage instalment happens to be 25 per centum of the gross monthly earning of the family. When the HAI index is 100, this indicates that middle-income family can comfortably purchase a middle-priced house. In simpler footings, this means that the higher the index figure, more households can afford to buy houses.

China missing the proper affordability arrow, research workers often borrow the arrows of PE ratio and HAI to clear up the state of affairs in China. In 2010, a Large-Sample Metropolitan Household Survey was carried out by Man and her squad in 2010. The squad calculated PE Ratio for 265 prefecture-level metropoliss and China as a whole. From the consequences, the average Housing Price to Earning Ratio was 7.07 countrywide and the mean was 8.8 ( Man, Zheng and Ren, 2011, pg 69 ) . These consequences fall in the group of unrelentingly unaffordable.

Man and her squad besides analyzed the HAI for the metropoliss of China with the undermentioned premises ; the fist episode is 20 per centum, the limited mortgage episode is 25 per centum of the gross monthly earning of the family, the adoption rate is 6.84 per centum and adulthood length is 30 old ages. The HAI was 70.7 for 265 prefecture metropoliss which is much lower than 100. This shows that families in those metropoliss are grim unaffordable ( Man, Zheng and Ren, 2011, pg 70 ) . Nevertheless, with no better option, the two arrows show us how the state of affairs is when it comes to lodging affordability in China.

Degree of income and Eligibility

A batch of developed counties have acknowledged definition as a manner of finding lodging affordability, unlike in China where descriptions of low-income, middle-income and high-income are really obscure. Different states frequently use different footings and definitions. It is necessary to hold a brief reappraisal of conventional description of income groups. We will utilize the US system as our illustration.

System in US

In the US, three rules are given for mensurating the affordability of lodging units. They include country average income ( AMI ) , just market rent ( FMR ) and poverty income.

Area average income ( AMI )

Housing cost in this group is the most low-cost and it has five income criterions. They are 30 % , 50 % , 80 % , 100 % and 120 % AMI and they partition the occupants into six income classs.

Income Category

AIM ( % )

Exceptionally Low-income

Less than 30

Very Low-Income




Average- Income


Reasonable- Income



More than 120

Table 2: Income class and AMI per centum

AMI has two intents which are categorising households on the footing of net incomes received and categorising house units harmonizing to the affordability rate. House affordability in relation to AMI can be defined as the per centum of AMI required to pull off to pay for the monthly rate associated with that house ( Vandenbroucke, 2011, pg 96 ) . Therefore, the chief relationship is:

Fair market rent ( FMR )

This can be defined as the payment benchmark for lodging support plans and it is often used as a substitute for the cost of units which are low-cost in lodging literature. House affordability in relation to FMR is reached by specifying the monthly rate of lodging as a per centum of FMR. Family gaining is normally calculated in relation to FMR to set up the maximal sum a household may perchance afford to utilize on lodging.

The System in China

Chinese authorities does non utilize the average income to categorise income degree ; instead, it takes the one-year disposable earning at the family degree and besides single degree. Having on average informations at disposal, the bing criterion informations will be used for the intent of analysis. Figure 3 displaces the five metropoliss in China with the highest residential monetary values in existent estate.

Figure 3 Annual disposable income per capital V urban poorness line in RMB

China ‘s local authorities has the power to come up with its ain low-cost lodging system under the supervising of cardinal authorities. Because of this, low-cost lodging system differs across China. Some metropoliss embrace both ownership lodging and public rental lodging, whereas others try out with ownership plan. Table 4 will merely look at ownership plan in five different metropoliss by measuring the income required to use for the plan assuming that the family size is three.


Annual income for Ownership Program

Percentage of one-year disposable income


RMB 82,800



RMB 79,587



RMB 72,084



RMB 55,184



RMB 45,300


Table 3: Low-cost lodging plan and eligibility in five chief metropoliss

From the information in the tabular array above, it is clear that China ‘s metropoliss have different per centum of one-year lodging disposable returns as the standard degree for low-cost lodging system. Anyone can measure up for the lodging system if their disposable income is between 50 per centum and 87 per centum yearly. Harmonizing to AMI making, the above income group falls in the low-income group.

Potential cause for Housing being unaffordable

The market lodging rate in China is non merely unaffordable to low-income and middle-income groups but besides to the high-income group. Below are some possible causes of this un-affordability.

Unfairness between demand and supply

Before 1998, lodging allotment by “ work unit ” was the lone chance for families in China to progress their life status. Peoples occupied the same houses across the state, which was normally referred to as “ work unit ” flats. In 1998 when societal lodging allotment system was terminated, many families were eager to better their life by retailing the “ work unit ” and geting new units in the market. Suddenly, existent estate concern in China faced an unexpected development gap, where developers would construct a market with ceaseless demand. Although the floor country of the edifices being put up grew by more than 300 per centum from 1999 to 2010, presently, the demand of lodging is still higher than the supply.

Abrupt Urbanization

Since 1978, major urbanisation procedure caused many societal jobs including lodging affableness. Rural urban migration took topographic point at high rate as people left behind farming area to look for better life in the metropoliss. These sorts of migrations have become the main subscriber to economic development for the past 30 old ages in China ( Bertaud, 2007, pg 59 ) . Cities stretched their boundaries continuously so that they could suit the increasing demand of lodging. Because of the enlargement, the authorities of China had to come up with farming area protection constabularies to do certain that nutrient bring forthing farm are safe. China kept losing the productive lands because of the turning boundaries of metropoliss. Housing monetary values went up when the farming area protection policies come in because land supply became more and more restricted.

Bad lodging investing

Housing monetary values about doubled between 1997 and 2007 in China. In large metropoliss like Shanghai and Beijing, the standard lodging cost the twelvemonth 2007 was about 10 times higher than in 1997. Housing was the lone investing that could convey China to a immense net income border within a really short clip. Many private investors and high-income occupants invested lodging. A batch of residential edifices were brought for investing grounds and were left unoccupied in malice of high dealing degree on the record. This sort of investing in lodging may hold heightened lodging demand doing the monetary values shoot manner excessively high.

Lack of other investing programs

There are really few investing options available for an mean Chinese in the market. They have limited choose and if non puting in the assuring stock market or maintaining nest eggs in Bankss, occupants turn to existent estate market where there is a wider investing chance.

Low-cost lodging affordability

The plan of low-cost lodging is still new in China and it reflects good in the five biggest metropoliss. Most of them lack to the full operation plan and they are still fighting to follow. Furthermore, low-cost lodging merchandising monetary values differ from one undertaking to another within one metropolis. Table 4 will demo the mean selling monetary value of low-cost unit in three metropoliss which are Shenzhen, Beijing and Guangzhou.