Rents of luxury residential apartments and serviced units are back on the rise as expatriate businessmen return to Hong Kong following their withdrawal at the height of the global financial crisis, property agents say.

"In the last two months we have rented out three houses at Three Bays in Stanley after their previous leases expired. One of the houses was leased for HK$240,000 a month - up from a lease of HK$220,000 for a similar house signed three months ago," said Victor Tin Sio-un, deputy general manager of Sino Group's leasing department.

"That is an indication of how sharp the rental growth has been," Tin said. The monthly rent paid for a 3,540 sq ft beach house at the Hong Kong Gold Coast in Tuen Mun had risen by 17% from HK$72,000 in December last year to HK$84,000 a month, he said.

South China Morning Post