The Chinese housing system has transformed from one dominated by public housing to one with thriving private homeownership in the last 30 years. A ‘big bang’ approach was adopted in 1998 to end in-kind allocation of housing. Chinese cities witnessed a housing boom from 2001 to 2005, which raised the issue of housing affordability. Housing mortgages benefited middle-income households, and some even speculated on the rising house prices. Because of the historical legacies, housing tenure in China is quite complicated. The general trend is that the state has retreated from housing provision. However, the state is still actively regulating housing markets, because real-estate speculation can lead to financial risks. Various policies have been enacted to counter the real-estate boom but in reality – because of the deep involvement of the local governments in land sales – these policies have not been very effective. Housing redevelopment triggered some social discontent. Soon the state stepped in to impose some conditions on housing demolition to reduce these conflicts. One major problem is migrant housing. Migrants are entirely dependent upon private rentals, which are usually supplied through so-called urban villages in periurban areas.