Shanghai Tightens Home-Buying Rules for Singles

Curbs on property purchases by unmarried singles flout tradition
Shanghai has tightened housing rules to keep a lid on prices Photograph by ImagineChina/ZUMA Press

The Chinese have a proverb that says, “Build a nest before attracting the phoenix.” Sticking with tradition, Tank Zhao had begun looking for an apartment as he planned to marry his girlfriend next year. Now the 28-year-old software engineer from Fujian province finds himself frozen out of Shanghai’s real estate market by a new prohibition on single nonresidents buying property in China’s second most populous city. “The policy is unreasonable; we aren’t speculators, we just need a place to live,” says Zhao. “Getting married first goes against our culture. I’ll have to explain to my girlfriend’s family that the Shanghai policy is what it is.”

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.