Vietnam property inventory drops 26.5% to 4.5 bil

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Apartment buildings in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo courtesy of AFP

The value of unsold housing and land plots fell by 26.5 percent last year to nearly US$4.5 billion, the Ministry of Construction has said.

Data from the ministry showed that the liquidation of inventory happened mostly in the small- and medium-sized house/apartment segments in large cities, especially of those less than 70 square meters and costing less than VND15 million a square meters.

Ho Chi Minh City has the largest inventory with 7,830 apartments and 260,000 square meters of land, followed by Hanoi with 6,580 apartments.

The ministry estimated apartments built in 2013 alone to be worth VND770.4 trillion at current prices, 7 percent higher in terms of units over 2012 and 5.3 percent in value terms.

It said 10,635 new construction businesses were established during the year, while 10,077 others went bankrupt, leaving the total number of firms in business at nearly 70,000.

The ministry said the market has switched from targeting the small number of wealthy to the middle- and low-income segments, with 57 projects with 34,837 apartments registering to switch from commercial to social housing. Sixty two others have sought to reduce the size of apartments.

Housing prices have dropped 10-50 percent from their 2008 peak to around the same levels as in 2006, the ministry said.

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