900 million won ain't what it used to be in property market

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900 million won ain't what it used to be in property market

 A view of apartments in Seocho District, southern Seoul, on Oct. 23. [YONHAP]

A view of apartments in Seocho District, southern Seoul, on Oct. 23. [YONHAP]

Even if you manage to get your hands on 900 million won ($800,000), you still would have just a 50-50 shot at an apartment in Seoul.
 
According to analysis by Korea Appraisal Board on Monday, of all apartments in Seoul’s 25 districts, only 54.19 percent were priced 900 million won or below last month, down from 69.26 percent a year earlier.
 
The situation was most evident in Gwangjin District and Seongdong District, both in eastern Seoul, and Songpa District in southern Seoul.  
 
In Gwangjin District, only 20.37 percent were priced 900 million won or under last month, down from 51.05 percent last year. In Songpa District, roughly 31.65 percent were priced 900 million won or under last year — this dropped to 13.31 percent last month.
 
In the Mapo District, western Seoul, 24.65 percent of the apartments were under 900 million won last month from 54.58 percent the same month last year. In Seongdong District, that figure went from 53.58 percent to 25.05 percent.
 
In Dongjak District, southern Seoul, Gangdong District, eastern Seoul, and Yongsan District, Jung District and Jongno District, all in central Seoul, the number plunged by more than 40 percent while others such as Seodaemun District in western Seoul and Seocho District and Gangnam District in southern Seoul decreased by some 30 percent.  
 
Meanwhile, the number of apartments costing above 900 million won is increasing — especially in the areas where the supply of pricey apartments used to be very low. Last September, no apartments in Gwanak District and Geumcheon District, both in southern Seoul, were priced above 900 million won.
 
That’s fast changing.
 
A 114.99-square-meter (1,237.74-square-foot) flat in Doosan apartment complex in Gwanak District which was about 835 million won last year is now trading at 1.2 billion won — a 42 percent increase.  
 
A 84.81-square-meter apartment in Lotte Castle Gold Park 1 Danji in Geumcheon District, which was about 875 million won last year, jumped to 1.15 billion won as of September this year.  
 
The situation is also spreading to Gyeonggi and Incheon. In September last year, of all apartments in the Seoul metropolitan area, 88.52 percent cost 900 million won or under. The number decreased to 82.22 percent last month, a 7-percentage-point drop.
 
BY OH WON-SEOK, CHEA SARAH   [chea.sarah@joongang.co.kr]
 

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