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Advantages to be the owner of the real estate in China

  • prices for real estate are lower, comparing to other countries
  • low cost public and communal services
  • comfortable and high-quality housing
  • high-rate and low-cost life level
  • safely of living in China
  • possibility to live and study in China for you and your children

Virtually all of the purchases in Chinese real estate are off plan or recently constructed developments, and it is often said that the newer the better. However, with so much development in this large and growing country, it is still a good idea to perform as much due diligence into a developer as possible. An IDIP, or International Developer Information Pack, is a great resource that can help the buyer make an informed decision.

Although the process is different in the various major cities, here are the basics of buying in China.

Find a property and submit and official offer letter through your agent. This will spell out the price, payment schedules and other conditions. When accepted, a deposit of 1% is due.

Make any financing arrangements. Chinese banks have limits as to how much they will lend and what percentage needs to be paid upfront, so do your research on this ahead of time to know what exactly you can afford.

Foreigners must apply to the government for permission to buy property. This is granted through the public security bureau. Also, you must have a notarized Chinese name in order to purchase. This can be done at your local embassy or in China at a notary’s office.

Once the government has granted the buyer permission to buy, the seller and buyer enter into the official sales contract, called the Customer Confirmation Agreement. This should be reviewed by your agent and lawyer before signing. At this signing, a deposit, typically, of 30%, is due. Should the sale fall through, this is returned to the buyer.

The official transfer process must go through the Realty Transaction Department. This process can take a month or more. They need a Property Purchasing Registration Form and a Property Selling Registration Form completed and filed with the Property Ownership Certificate. The Realty Transaction Department will provide a date for the official Realty Transfer Notice to be given.

At the appointed date, the final transaction takes place. Money is exchanged, any legal fees paid, transfer and property taxes are due and the final transfer documents are signed. The keys are handed over and you now have your new Chinese property!

Again, the process is a bit different in each major city, and the taxes vary by locale, but it follows the same basic path.