Housing offered by China is less expensive and more comfortable than in Vladvostok.
VLADIVOSTOK. April 29. VOSTOK-MEDIA – Under Chinese laws, to buy an apartment a foreigner must live in the country several years. However, Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture, where Hunchun is located, is an autonomous region with its own laws owing to the status of a border territory. An average Chinese family may have two and even three children there without any extra payments to the Government, whereas in the rest of China you may have only one child.
A foreign national wishing to buy a house or apartment there shall prior to the drawing up of documents sign a paper in which he agrees to observe the local laws and not apply for residence permit. That done, he is permitted to invest in real estate.
There are several agents in Hunchun, who are engaged in the sale of housing to foreigners. Wang Ming, a real estate agent, said those Russians who bought apartments in 2007 have made a good investment, because house prices in the area have increased twofold since then. 2009 marked a sharp drop in house purchase contracts with Russians due to the global economic meltdown. However, since 2010 two Russian nationals have bought housing in Hunchun. Altogether, about 80 Russians purchased real property in the city.
In the new residential quarters, which are presently under construction in Hunchun, there are sales centers, where buyers can see a model of a housing estate with surrounding infrastructure and facilities, as well as models of apartments of various sizes. Typically, two options are offered to potential buyers: 45 to 60 square meter apartments and the apartments exceeding 120 square meters. The price for a new apartment in a five-storey residential house is 775,000 rubles ($26,378). To furnish such apartment will take about 200,000 rubles ($6,800). All in all, you can buy a comfortable apartment in a building located near stores, child care center, school and sports center for less than one million rubles. For comparison, in Vladivostok you can buy with this money only a studio on the outskirts of the city, where the infrastructure is very poor and the crime rate is high.
Upon payment for the apartment, the buyer receives a certificate of the right of ownership and then he arranges all the necessary documents for connecting the apartment to electricity, water and heating. “It takes not more than four hours to prepare such documents since all the utility services are located in one building,” Wang Ming said.
P.S.: To some, the string of news articles on China might seem as if I’m trying to agitate residents of Primorye to drop everything and move to China because of the better living standards of the latter. This is not so, though, since there are not many who would agree to move to other country with a different cultural background. But walking the streets of Hunchan lined with new and not-so-new houses and hearing what people had to say on how little housing, utilities, food and child care cost them I was deeply ashamed for my country.
Hunchun is a coal mining city which is very similar to the Russian city of Artyom, only with the exception that in Artyom new buildings do not sprout like mushrooms after the summer rains, and tourists are not seen in the city. If China could attract tourists from Primorsky Krai to their city by its health care centers, services and parks, so why can’t we do it in Russia?