Produced by Maggie Liu, Annie Qiu, Zoya Zhao, Jasmine Zhou
Hong Kong housing price stands high all around the world in the past several years. There’s a trend reported by some news report showing that more and more people choose to buy or invest in haunted houses to solve the living problem.
(Source: data.gov.hk database)
Haunted houses refer to those that violent or tragic events, such as murder, accidental death or suicide have ever happened in the houses. As a result, the housing price of haunted houses always offers a big discount compared with other similar apartments.
Hong Kong people are always considered as superstitious and reluctant to ominous things. However, facing the extremely high housing price, is there any chance that Hong Kong people can gradually overcome the fear and choose haunted house appealing to the relatively low price? We have done a comprehensive research and got some interesting findings.
The overall trend of the housing price of Hong Kong in each district keeps increasing from 1997 until to now, excluding the impact of the Asian financial crisis from 1997 to 2003 on housing prices in Hong Kong.
Recorded haunted houses distribution in past 20 years in Hong Kong’s 18 districts
(Source: Squarefoot Haunted House Database)
As shown on the map, the number of haunted houses is the largest in Kwun Tong district. Do you really know how much discount is given to the haunted house? Let’s play a game!
(It is recommended to open this sound effect when playing the game.)
How many questions have you answered correctly? Actually, the discounts of haunted house vary due to many factors, such as the reasons for death, the severity of the events, the location of houses, etc.
All the discount of haunted house transactions in the past five years
The graph above shows all the news reports in the past five years that covering the haunted house transactions’ price. Each point stands for a discount given to one transaction of the haunted house. The graph shows that the discount of haunted houses is going up year by year despite the increasing normal housing price, which means the haunted houses are cheaper and cheaper as time goes by.
HK people’s perception of haunted house
To find out how Hong Kong people perceive toward haunted houses, we conducted a survey. The sample size of the questionnaire is 205, among which 60.5% are female and 39.5% are male. We mainly delivered our questionnaire through online ways including sending a message to people and transform questionnaire link on different social media platforms including WeChat, WhatsApp, Facebook.
In conclusion, it’s hard for people to accept living in the haunted house even the housing price is at a great discount. Generally speaking, most Hong Kong people seem to be superstitious regardless of gender, age, educational level and monthly income. When the discount is large (from 20% to 60% off), some people may change their mind and choose to buy it. However, the big discount cannot be offered in the real property market.
For example, we find people in each range of age are reluctant for buying the haunted houses even at a discount. 66 people (almost one-third of the total) of all chose the answer “not be considered at all”, For people aged “< 18 (57.14%)”, “31 ~ 40 (38.46%)” and “18 ~ 30 (37.21%)”, the percentages of “not considering at all” are larger. However, for the group with relatively lower percentages from “41 ~ 50 (18.92%)” and “> 60 (23.08%)”, actually their other choices are relatively more even distributions. As a result, most people are willing to buy the haunted houses at a larger discount from at least “20% off” to “more than 60% off” regardless of age.
The situation is similar to another two filters- monthly income and educational level. People are unacceptable about living in the haunted houses even at a great discount.
In addition, we also find the relationship between cause of the death in the haunted house and people’s acceptance.
As shown above, the acceptability for different kinds of haunted houses is variable. 102 or about half of all interviewees completely unacceptable towards haunted houses where a felonious murder or suicide occurred before. However, for the haunted houses where suicide happened before, people are relatively more acceptable (only 60 people chose “completely unacceptable”).
“In most cases, only some experienced real estate investors will choose haunted houses to make profits. They usually rent out the apartment or seek capital gain. The rental of haunted houses is always lower than market price and some potential tenants like foreigners and youngster don’t really mind living in it for a short period of time,” said Rocky Wong, a senior sales director in Kai Tak New Zone Hub of Centaline Property.
“However, I believe that the housing price of haunted houses will never be as much as the normal one and 30% discount on that is common despite the high housing price in Hong Kong. Based on my experience, most Hong Kong people are still quite superstitious now,“ he added.
“The speculation on haunted houses is considered as a high-risk investment, so banks will usually not provide any loans on it. The cost of investing in haunted houses is quite unaffordable for most of the individual investors. Therefore, the haunted house price will not surge in a short period of time. ”
Posted by: huiyanliu