Chinese developers last year completed the fewest new homes in 38 years, contributing to a rise in property prices that stopped some people fulfilling their dream of homeownership.

Home prices rose 30% last year, according to property agency Centaline's City Leading Index, and analysts believe a shortage of new flats will contribute to a 15% increase in prices this year.

Transport and Housing Bureau figures show that only 7,200 new homes were completed last year, 18% fewer than a year earlier and the smallest number since 1972. The total was 40 % below the government's forecast early last year.

South China Morning Post