Chinese officials said that a group of homeowners in Wenzhou, an eastern city, would not have to pay a fee to extend the rights to the land under their residences. Homeowners in China own their dwellings but not the land under them. All land in China is owned by the government, which parcels it out to developers and homeowners through 20- to 70-year leases.
In Wenzhou, the local government had told some homeowners whose 20-year leases had expired that they would have to pay a large fee to renew, and the situation was being monitored closely across the country. Many Chinese homeowners, a bedrock of the country’s economy and growing consumer sector, worried that they would have to pay dearly to keep using the land under their homes.