ACCORDING to the municipal provident fund center, as of the end of August this year, the city had issued an accumulative 107.4 billion yuan (US$15.6 billion) in low-interest housing provident fund loans, helping 182,000 families purchase 17.38 million square meters of housing in Shenzhen, the Shenzhen Special Zone Daily reported.
As of the end of August, 84.4 percent of families had used housing provident fund loans to purchase their first apartments, with an average area of 82 square meters; while 15.6 percent had purchased their second apartments to improve their living conditions, with an average area of 89 square meters, according to statistics from the center.
Housing provident fund loans mainly help families with purchasing small and medium-sized apartments, which are less than 90 square meters.
At present, the benchmark interest rate of commercial housing mortgage loans over five years is 4.9 percent, and that of housing provident fund loans for the same period is 3.25 percent.
According to the above interest rate levels, people who apply for a housing provident fund loan of 900,000 yuan with a term of 30 years can save about 310,000 yuan on interest compared with a commercial housing loan of the same amount, greatly reducing the cost of buying an apartment in Shenzhen.
By the end of August 2018, the city's housing provident fund loans are expected to have saved employees over 40 billion yuan on interest expenses within the total time limit.
Currently, more than 80 percent of provident fund services can be handled online.