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Nearly 100 Chinese cities lower mortgage rate floor for first homes

Xinhua | November 29, 2023


This aerial photo taken on June 7, 2023 shows a view of downtown Changsha, central China's Hunan Province. (Xinhua/Chen Sihan)

The People's Bank of China (PBOC), China's central bank, said that 95 Chinese cities have lowered the floor on commercial individual mortgage rates for first-time home buyers while 24 others have abolished the floor as of the end of September amid efforts to help bring down borrowing costs for home buyers and boost the real estate market.

In its Third-Quarter Monetary Policy Report, the bank said it encouraged more cities to lower or abolish the mortgage rate floor for first-time home buyers since the start of the year.

As of the end of September, the rate moderation has affected more than 22 trillion yuan (about 3.1 trillion U.S. dollars) of existing loans for first-time home buyers, with the weighted average interest rate lowered to 4.27 percent after the change, down 73 basis points on average compared to before the change. The report said it would help borrowers save up to 170 billion yuan in interest payments, benefiting 150 million individuals.

The PBOC said that it would implement a series of policies such as lowering existing mortgage interest rates to reduce borrowers' interest burden, reduce their incentive to repay loans early, boost investment and consumption, better meet people's rigid and improved housing needs, and promote the real estate market's stable and healthy development.