“We estimate that there will be around 500 to 600 [residential property] transactions in July and the outlook for August would be similar,” remarked the senior director of property agency Centaline, Jacky Shek, during a first half year review of the market yesterday.
Shek said that the market would stay bleak in the coming months if no new big scale property projects were to roll out sales, noting that no new projects are in the pipeline.
In terms of sales for the whole third quarter, the real estate agency estimates transactions to only reach 700 to 800, with the price remaining stable throughout the period.
Shek explained that the somber outlook is due to the new mortgage ratio adjustment rolled out in May, with buyers now reluctant to purchase new property.
The news about the revised rental bill, still under debate, is also slowing down investors from purchasing properties for renting out, she noted.
The senior director also indicated that the upcoming implementation of these two policies by the government were the major factors that drove the transactions in May to increase, adding that the new property project in Taipa – Nova Grand – had attracted buyers and also boosted the sales volume for the month.
When asked whether the completion of several large-scale projects in Cotai would assist demand for the city’s rental market, Shek said that most non-resident workers would rather choose to live at Zhuhai and only management-level workers choose to live in the city, therefore the impact would be small.
Meanwhile, the neighbouring Chinese city Hengqin is limiting property purchases to only Zhuhai residents.
The most recent, and the only available, project with units for sale in Hengqin was only available for local Zhuhai residents, with some 400 units sold, reversing the norm of buyers from Macau being the major clients.
According to Centaline data, a total of 502 units were sold in the previous quarter, up around 30 per cent year-on-year.
For the first half of the year, the real estate agency revealed that the transactions in Hengqin had dropped significantly, given that fewer new projects were introduced during the period. However, with new properties to be introduced in the second half of the year, the market performance in Hengqin would improve, the group revealed.
Offices in the lead
“We are more optimistic over commercial and industrial units in the second half of the year, in particular we see that offices have the most heated performance, with the price of offices in the Nam Van district increasing the most,” reported the director of Centaline, Roy Ho.
The reason being, explained Ho, is the previous price was low and the price in Hong Kong increased at a fast rate, “so the price in Macau is comparatively cheaper,” he stated.
When asked about whether many public departments moving out of private offices would cause any impact on the market segment, Ho said that the moving of public offices “would not have an instant impact, they tend to affect [the market] gradually.”
Overall, the agent believed that pressure on the office market would not be significant, given that more companies are being set up in Macau.
Regarding the prices for offices in the coming months, Centaline perceived that the market would increase the sales price by 25 per cent, believing it could reach over MOP10,000 per metre square in the next one to two years’ time.
Reflecting on the first half of the year, with the introduction of the new ‘Carat’ property, located in NAPE, more stores were sold, with Ho revealing that investors are now tending to invest in commercial and touristic zones.
Meanwhile, more industrial units were transacted, but the rental market for industrial units had decreased, given the recent cases of license issues for businesses located inside industrial buildings.
“Fewer young entrepreneurs are renting industrial units because of the license restrictions, [so] they need to seek out [rental spaces in] malls instead,” said Ho.