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Gov’t urged to offer incentives for buying large apartments

By Omar Obeidat - Jul 21,2016 - Last updated at Jul 21,2016

Apartments larger than 180 square metres are not popular with homebuyers, according to the Jordan Housing Developers Association (JT photo)

AMMAN — Thousands of large residential apartments worth hundreds of millions of dinars have been sitting idle for years as developers struggle to sell, according to the Jordan Housing Developers Association (JHDA), which said the government could stimulate their sales. 

In a phone interview with The Jordan Times on Wednesday, JHDA President Fawaz Hassan called on the government to include apartments larger than 180 square metres (sq.m.) in incentives granted to the real estate market to encourage people to buy them. 

Late last year, the government extended incentives granted to first-time homebuyers until November 30, 2016, exempting would-be homeowners from registration fees for the first 150sq.m. of apartments sized 180sq.m. or less. 

The government said at the time that the decision aimed to enable medium-income Jordanians to buy decent housing units and to encourage developers to build new residential projects. 

But the JHDA president said that even Jordanians who could afford to buy expensive apartments need to be encouraged through incentives. 

He added that developers who have been unable to sell their large apartments would be able to use cash from selling properties to start new housing projects. 

"By boosting the housing sector more than 50 other sectors will benefit," Hassan said. 

An official, who requested to remain unnamed, said the government will review the issue of incentives granted to first-time homebuyers before the end of the year. 

 

On granting incentives to buy large apartments, the official said that people are not buying because prices are "exaggerated" by developers, ruling out that exemptions from registration fees would boost sales.

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