Two major Chinese cities joined dozens of others nationwide to scrap housing purchase restrictions on Thursday in a bid to boost their property market.
The municipal housing security and management bureau in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province, moved to lift three-year-old restrictions on homes smaller than 140 square meters. The policy will start on Friday.
A month earlier, the agency lifted restrictions on homes with a floor area of no less than 140 square meters.
July home prices in Hangzhou slumped 2.5 percent from June rates, the biggest month-on-month decline among 70 large and medium-sized cities nationwide for a fourth month, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.
Sluggish sales left housing inventories overstocked. As of Thursday, 95,000 new homes had yet to be sold, 50.3 percent more than last year.
Also on Thursday, the housing management authorities in Xi'an, capital of northwest China's Shaanxi Province announced to scrap housing purchase limits starting Sept. 1.
China's property market saw a weak first half of the year, prompting dozens of cities nationwide to remove housing purchase limits in a bid to revive sales and boost the economy.
Nationwide, property sales witnessed a steep decline in the Jan.-July period. Sales in terms of floor area dropped 7.6 percent year on year, 1.6 percentage points higher than the decline seen in the first half.
In early 2011, China placed housing purchase limits restricting local residents to two homes amid a spate of other measures to cool off the then red hot real estate market.