Sales of China Vanke, one of the country's biggest property developers, jumped 16.1 percent year on year to 56.73 billion yuan (about 8.1 billion U.S. dollars), while those of Country Garden and Evergrande Group, two other property giants, amounted to 46.51 billion yuan and 41.01 billion yuan, respectively, almost flat from a year earlier, according to data from CRIC, a property research institution.
However, sales of the country's top 100 developers fell 12 percent year on year last month, partly due to the Spring Festival holiday.
Some developers rolled out promotions in the latter half of last year, which attracted consumers to buy flats in advance and thus led to weak demand at the start of the year, said Zhao Ke, an analyst with China Merchants Securities Research Center.
Analysts also agreed that the outbreak of the novel coronavirus will have short-term impacts on the property market and that transactions are expected to rebound as long as the epidemic ends.
"The demand can only be delayed, not vanish," said Liu Lu, an analyst with Huatai Securities, adding that the epidemic will have limited impacts year-round.