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More Tax on Multiple Flats Purchase in One Go - HK

Hong Kong government announced to raise stamp duty on first-time home buyers who purchase multiple residential properties in one contract to 15% from preferential stamp duty rate below 4.25%. The same rule applies for the second-home buyers. The new policy will be effective from 12 April.

Commenting on the policy, Citi Group analyst Ken Yeung said the move is likely to affect primary sentiment as it is very rare for buying multiple flats in one single contract in the secondary market.

"We believe the policy should have a cooling effect to red-hot primary sentiment, but it is unlikely to drive down secondary home price", Yeung said, adding potential buyers may take some time to assess its impact on the housing market.

"We see the major risk here will be a continuous strong launch pipeline in the primary market throughout 2017", said Yeung.

According to media research, for the past 5 months (Nov 2016 to Mar 2017), there have been 421 contracts entered into for more than one primary market flat purchase, totally involving 956 apartments , equating to 26% of the whole amount of primary sales in the period.

Market analysts generally expect there will be no more additional policies on tax/stamp duty to be announced by the CY Leung government. If there will be new policies, it would most likely on housing mortgages side, according to their research.

- APMR News

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