Central China Management — a sister company of Central China Real Estate, the largest developer in the central province of Henan, said in a recent announcement that it would accept wheat deposits for homes in Minquan County.
The announcement was posted on the company’s official WeChat account this week. Buyers can use grain to compensate up to 160,000 yuan (nearly $24,000) of their down payment. New homes offered by the company sell for between $100,000 and $124,000, according to Leju Holdings, a real estate service provider.
Wheat isn’t the only pantry staple that’s part of the developer’s promotional campaign.
In another announcement last month, the company said it was willing to accept garlic as a down payment for a residential project in Qi County, Henan Province.
Henan Province is a major production center in China for wheat and garlic.
Central China Management did not respond to a request for comment and removed its wheat ad from WeChat on Wednesday. The campaign was widely reported in Chinese media and trending on social media.
A recent survey by China Real Estate Information, a private research firm, said sales for the country’s top 100 developers plummeted 59% in May from a year ago.
Meanwhile, more and more developers are coming up with imaginative ways to boost sales.
Poly Real Estate, one of the top developers in the country, said it would give freebies to buyers a 100-kilogram (220-pound) pig if they buy a house in his residential project in Lianyungang City, eastern Jiangsu Province. The company even offered to have the pig slaughtered for customers.
“Buy a house and get a 200 cat ‘Peppa’ pig. Get a great life in one stop,” read the announcement, posted on the firm’s WeChat account last week, using the popular British cartoon character to refer to pig.
A “Catty” is a traditional Chinese unit of weight and is equivalent to 500 grams. A pig of 200 cats is worth about 1,630 yuan ($242), according to the latest government pricing data. Homes in the project cost between $184,000 and $260,000, according to data from Leju.
Poly Real Estate did not respond to a request for comment.
Corrected: An earlier version of this story incorrectly attributed wheat and garlic ad campaigns to an affiliate company.