Why Asia is home to the world's least affordable house prices

Many of the most expensive cities for local residents to buy a home are in located in the Asia region including Hong Kong and Mumbai.

August 02, 2017

Hong Kong’s sky-high housing prices is a well-documented phenomenon – the city has theworld’s priciest homes for seven years running and is the least affordable housing market globally.

And there’s no stopping the rise for the foreseeable future. JLL research shows that limited supply has pushed up prices.

Ingrid Cheh, Associate Director at JLL Hong Kong Research, says: “From a buyer’s perspective, the Hong Kong residential sales market remains supply-driven. With few choices in the market, a lack of incentive to buy in the secondary sales market and strong pent-up demand, newly launched flats continue to be gobbled up quickly.”

Against such a backdrop, capital values are expected to grow 10-15 per cent for 2017, even under the tightened mortgage rules and anticipation of increasing mortgage rates.

Hong Kong is hardly alone; many of the most expensive cities for local residents to buy a home are in Asia.

Over in Mumbai, a combination of limited land due to its geography, government policies and demographics have led to high residential prices. And homes in Chinese cities have been on an upward trajectory for the last five years; Beijing and Shanghai rank third and fourth in terms of the most expensive residential market in the world.

“Inventories in these markets are low and demand from genuine owner occupiers settling in these cities is huge,” says Joe Zhou, Head of Research JLL China. “Everyone wants to live in Tier 1 economic centers.”

To stem the inflation, Chinese government implemented cooling measures earlier last year, which have had limited impact although the latest data show the curbs are finally beginning to bite.

Watch the video above to learn more.