As a result of the pandemic, China’s real estate market has taken a significant blow. While their economy has begun to reopen and real estate development, sales, and other projects pick up steam, it is still uncertain what the future holds for China’s real estate market. Still, noting the existing trends that have influenced real estate development in recent years and assessing the pandemic’s impact should help shed light on how real estate development will look in other markets.

Existing Trends

Before the pandemic, China’s real estate market had shifted its focus to city clusters, mixed-use developments, and urban infrastructure. The more flexible housing policies established in 2019 for real estate development had also influenced this trend. Through high-speed rails, various urban areas with unique competitive advantages had begun to connect, providing more significant work and expansion opportunities across greater distances. These smaller cities offer ample opportunities for growth, especially from the ground up for real estate development.

Along with these smaller urban areas, developmental goals are also tied to ideas of sustainability, technology, and investment opportunities. While the pandemic has undoubtedly changed how real estate development operates in China, it has also accelerated the need for such goals in developmental projects. As the pandemic slows, it can be assumed that more projects that involve sustainable infrastructure, flexible workplaces, international investment opportunities, and more will be considered a higher priority.

New developments will be more geared towards live & work lifestyle, with commuting decreasing. New residential projects incorporate improved infrastructure and offer remote business centers instead of going to an office. We will see the inclusion of work from home spaces in new residential projects, either as separate “office” rooms or improved connectivity for remote workers. 

Coronavirus Impact

Because of the ongoing pandemic, China’s real estate industry has been forced to adapt rather than halt altogether. Realtors have taken online sales, virtual reality tours, and live-streaming marketing to keep the industry alive. The rapid integration of technological advancements and programs has made it so that development projects can continue, with caution, in high demand. It is projected that more industry professionals will make better use of the Internet, Zoom, Skype, and other technologies to expedite conversations, more easily facilitate sales agreements, and promote more engagement across involved parties. 

Technology will adapt in other areas to include remote closings, online notary services, and digital recordation of real estate documents.

Naturally, uncertainty remains surrounding the economy, and this widespread attitude has, in many ways, hindered the complete recovery of the real estate industry. However, through evolution and persistence, real estate development in China should begin to accelerate as concerns are dismissed, and technology becomes more prominent in day-to-day work.

About The Author David Joseph Simard