Asia-Pacific Networks for Housing Research Newletter, July 2014
Housing affordability has been a major concern for many people in Taiwan, especially young people. The most recent data from the Ministry of Interior shows that the housing price to income ratio is 15.01 in Taipei City, which is higher than that of Hong Kong and Vancouver. The government has been very slow to take effective actions to cool down the housing market, such as the tax reform to increase the property tax and the tax on the capital gains based on the housing sale. One reason is that many legislators represent the interests of real estate developers, so tax reform is very difficult. The social discontents on the skyrocketing housing prices are strong, and they continue to be a political request for the forthcoming elections for mayors and president. Some tax reforms will be enacted in the future if the social pressure persists. At this moment, the central bank of Taiwan is trying to tighten the mortgages available for home investors, though the effect is not as powerful as the tax reform can be.