After consecutive years of losses, several real estate firms in HCM City started to show more optimism in the market as the number of transaction is picking up.
Savills Vietnam reported that, in the first quarter of 2014, 1,600 apartments were sold, the highest number in the last three years. In addition, house prices in HCM City have dropped, but remain stable. Phan Thanh Huy, head of Novaland Group said, “We are buying back a number of projects located in the city centre. Our goal is to sell 3,000 apartments and earn VND6 trillion (USD28.5 million).”
Thu Duc Housing Development also sets a goal of VND64.3 billion in profits this year, three times higher than last year. Le Chi Hieu, Chairman of Thu Duc Housing Development, said the real estate market has shown signs of recovery and the company would focus exclusively on housing for middle-class and low-income families.
Foreign investors have also also been upbeat, taking this time as a good opportunity for investment. Kim Kyoo Chul, member of the board of directors of South Korea’s National Housing Organisation, announced that they would invest USD1 billion into 14 projects for low-income people in Vietnam. “In 2015, we’ll complete our ‘First Home Project’. Each square metres will be sold at only VND9 million,” he said.
According to Kim Kyoo Chul, foreign investors are very interested in the Vietnamese housing market, but the number and quality of housing projects was not in tune with demand. He said, “Vietnam has a young population and many still haven’t had their own home yet. I think Vietnam is an exciting potential market.”
Several consulting firms and analysts have commented that foreign investors are beginning to have more confidence in the Vietnamese housing market. Marc Townsend, Managing Director of CBRE in Vietnam, pointed out that in the first four months of 2014, four large-scale projects and over USD3 billion in FDI have been registered.