Bloomberg Businessweek

To Pay Rent Is Glorious

China’s government wants to make it easier to put off buying a home
A rental apartment in Shanghai

China began to allow private homeownership only in 1998, setting the stage for an historic urban land rush. Now the government is trying to engineer a different kind of transformation: getting more people to rent.

After a public outcry against spiraling housing costs, President Xi Jinping used the milestone 19th Party Congress in October to pledge that the nation will make rentals as important as purchases. City governments from Beijing to Shanghai have earmarked public land to auction to property companies that would develop rental projects only.

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