(Yicai Global) May 11 -- Speculation suggests Homelink Real Estate Agency Co., a major Chinese company better known as Lianjia, has closed three stores in each its 100 self-defined sales regions in Beijing, making a total of 300 closures to date.
However, the reports are inaccurate, Beijing Youth Daily quoted a Lianjia manager as saying on May 9. He confirmed the company has shut down some stores in the city due to tightened regulation. Initial data shows that 87 branches, including 44 commercial property agencies and nine in popular locations have shut, with the exact number not yet available, he added.
The closures come just weeks after major Chinese property developer China Vanke Co. [SHE:000002] pumped USD436 million into the real estate chain.
A number of stores had zero sales last month, several agents said, adding that the stores will re-open once the city's restrictions on property sales are lifted. Data from the Beijing Municipal Commission of Housing and Urban-Rural Development showed that second-hand housing sales were down 35 percent on the month in April, and 36 percent down from the same time last year.
Lianjia isn't the only realty office to close branches in the city. Beijing 5i5j Real Estate Brokerage Co. and Soufun International are also shutting down stores that don't comply with the latest wave of housing regulations. They are mostly commercial agencies, sources close to the firms said, but the exact number of closures is unavailable.