GoHome.com.hk Survey Reveals

GoHome.com.hk Survey Reveals:
- 70% of Hong Kong Residents Plan to Purchase Property in the next 12 months

– Hong Kong Residents think that the Olympic Games has Little Effect on the Property Market

– The Internet is now the No.1 Medium for Property Search

[HONG KONG, August 13, 2008] – GoHome.com.hk, Hong Kong’s No. 1 Property website, today unveiled the results of its half-yearly Property Trends Survey and monthly poll. The Survey interviewed about 1,000 property buyers who use the website, while the poll received 434 responses.

It has been widely reported that the property market will take a breather in the short term as the much-anticipated Beijing Olympic Games take centre stage, and will slowly start to stir with activity after the Games. The online poll of 434, which was conducted in July, revealed sentiments that are contrary to the reports. 53% of respondents think that the Games have little or no effect, pointing to the fact that there is no significant relationship between the Olympics and the property market. Instead, the slight slowdown in the property market could instead be attributed to the lackluster stock market, which has caused investors to adopt a wait and see stance. 

GoHome.com.hk’s Property Trends survey, which took place from 1 to 31 July had approximately 1000 respondents. 56% were male and 44% were female. 38% said that they bought at least one property in the last 24 months. 70% indicated that they intend to purchase property within the next 12 months, which strongly points to the fact that they are on an active hunt for property purchases. 68% said that they intend to buy property for their own stay, and 29% purely for investment purposes. This augurs well for the property market and indicates that a lot of buying activities will take place in the months to come.

Besides general sentiments on market conditions, reasons that make property an attractive investment option to respondents include: Capital appreciation potential (24%), vehicle to hedge against inflation (18%), solid and safe investment (15%), potential rental income (13%) and retirement planning (11%). This implies that the market still perceives property investment as an attractive and viable vehicle for long term profit and retirement planning purposes.

In terms of the type of property they are interested in, over 40% indicated ready-made or completed apartment units, while 19% said they are looking for new or uncompleted apartment units.

51% indicated that they were interested in property priced less than HKD2million, 36% have budgets ranging from HKD2 to 4 million.

The survey shows that the top three factors property investors consider when making property purchases are: Location (35%), Price (34%) and capital appreciation potential (21%). The top three factors were closely tied.

In similar surveys conducted in Singapore and Malaysia by the iProperty.com Group, “Location” was indicated as the single most important factor.

Commenting on the differences between Hong Kong residents to Malaysians and Singaporeans, General Manager of GoHome.com.hk, Ms Sherry Wong said: “Hong Kong property price is very much determined by Location and Package of the property offered. This explains why Hong Kong residents emphasize on price when making a purchase decision. In addition, the comparatively more volatile nature of Hong Kong property prices compared to other countries, may also explain this.

When it comes to Loans and Financing, 40% of Hong Kong residents would opt for 70% financing. In contrast, over 50% of Malaysians said they would opt for 80-90% financing. The survey also revealed that 73% will not invest in a property without personally inspecting it, which shows that Hong Kong investors prefer to “play safe” when it comes to property investment and would prefer to invest locally in their own market.

Chief Executive Officer of the iProperty.com Group, Mr Kensuke Tsurumaru said, “Luxury home prices in Asia still have potential to grow, and hence are perceived to offer good investment opportunities. Potential investors also tend to compare opportunities across Asian markets, with countries like Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong, being especially popular.”

Taking advantage of the influx of new capital to Asia and growing global demand for high-end properties in this region, the iProperty.com Group recently launched iLuxuryasia.com, Asia’s first and only luxury property website.

Mr Tsurumaru added, “We recognize that while many investors are interested to invest in overseas luxury property, many lack the time and resources to pursue them, thus resulting in missed opportunities. Furthermore, we found that when it comes to luxury property investment, people tend to compare opportunities across different countries. Therefore, we launched iLuxuryasia.com, conceived as a one-stop portal to provide local and foreign property investors with all the information they need to invest confidently in luxury real estate in Asian markets, without having to scour through different channels. With the wide array of services offered, iLuxuryasia.com is well poised to meet these investors’ needs and make the entire process a cinch.” 

The Internet is their first and primary property search tool
Over 50% of Hong Kong residents said that the Internet is the first tool they turn to when initiating their property hunt. When asked what they relied on most for updates on properties available for sale, nearly 40% indicated the Internet.

When asked why the Internet is their preferred medium for conducting their property hunt, respondents indicated the following reasons: It’s fast and saves time (22%), it’s convenient (19%), 24×7 availability (16%) and so on.

The Internet was clearly the favourite tool of choice, with 80% using it to hunt for properties for sale, 56% to research market trends, 37% to update themselves on the latest property news, 26% to research developers and 27% to look for real estate agents.

Ms Wong added: “Most Hong Kong residents have already adopted the Internet as their key research and communication tool. From obtaining news updates to communicating with others, the Internet is THE tool. Online property portals in Hong Kong are still in their early stages of development, compared to more matured western markets. GoHome.com.hk’s strong growth over the years, even with minimal resources and management, is a clear indication of online property portals’ rising trend. With iProperty.com’s injection of resources and expertise, we are confident that GoHome.com.hk is n track for explosive growth.”

Go.Home.com.hk is undergoing a major website revamp to enhance user experience and provide property hunters with tools and information to help them in their property search, and make more informed decisions. Besides a new look, new sections and features that have recently been introduced include: “New Development” section, “Building Reviews”, “Property Email Alerts”, eNewsletters and exclusive offers for registered members.

 

About GoHome network (www.gohome.com.hk
The GoHome network is Hong Kong’s No.1 real estate portal both in terms of number of listings and user traffic, as measured by ComScore. Over 578,000 unique users view the network’s property listings each month. The GoHome sites, which are Chinese language based but also available in English, reach over 45% of all unique Hong Kong internet users looking for property online each month, a result that is more than four and a half times better than our nearest competitor.

Since our establishment in 1999, GoHome’s purpose is to provide objective, up-to-date and useful information and services for home seekers and to provide a cost effective marketing channel for agencies and property owners to attract potential buyers and renters. In September 2001, GoHome merged with House18 to form the largest one-stop property and home related portal in Hong Kong. GoHome is now part of the iProperty.com Group.

About iProperty.com (www.iproperty.com)
iProperty.com (www.iproperty.com) is Asia’s No.1 online property group, with leading property websites in Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan and the Philippines. We are part of Australian Securities Exchange-listed IPGA Limited (www.ipgalimited.com). Recently, the iProperty.com Group made history by winning the highly prestigious CNBC Asia Pacific Property Awards in the “Best Property Portal” category for 4 of our websites Malaysia (www.iproperty.com.my), Singapore (www.iproperty.com.sg), Hong Kong (www.gohome.com.hk) and Philippines (www.iproperty.com.ph). iProperty.com is owned by Australian Stock Exchange-listed IPGA Limited (www.ipgalimited.com), (ASX: IPP).

iProperty.com Network:
Singapore: iProperty.com Singapore
Malaysia: iProperty.com Malaysia
Hong Kong: GoHome.com.hk and House18.com
Taiwan: VRHOUSE.com.tw
Philippines: iProperty.com Philippines
Events: iProperty.com EXPO
Luxury: iLuxuryasia.com

For media queries, please contact:

Tammi Chan
Tel:      2901 6906
Email:  [email protected]

Fiona Wong
Tel:      2901 6909
Email:  [email protected]