Property developers in no mood to further decline real estate prices

Written by Prachi Karnik Pradhan | Pune | Updated: Dec 26 2008, 06:48am hrs
Despite a decline in fresh bookings, real estate developers are unwilling to bring down property prices. They have tried luring buyers with small discounts and freebies such as cars and higher brokerage to brokers but this has not translated into sales.

Sales have dropped by almost 20-25%, says Shivkumar Bhalla, vice chairman of the Builders Association of India. Developers have had to drop the property prices by almost 10-30%. But they cannot go down any further as builders claim they incurred huge costs for acquiring land on which these properties are coming up making it impossible to lower prices.

Builders and developers have made all attempts to lure prospective buyers by offering lucrative incentives and freebie offers including luxury cars. However, these offers have not translated into bookings. Builders also offered double to brokerage to brokers. But there has not been an increase or improvement in the sales, says Bhalla. So builders have not got into new projects despite getting all the required sanctions, says Bhalla.

No one is ready to venture into newer projects. We are facing a tough time to find buyers for our existing projects. At this juncture, though we have projects that have got all clearances and sanctions, we have decided not to venture into newer projects, said Sandeep Raje, another developer of M/s Raje Estate Developers. Most of the builders have opted to redesign the projects including reducing the carpet area.

Affordable housing with lower rates can be provided only in peripheral areas. Land prices in areas with good infrastructure are high. So it is not possible to slash real estate rates further, said Vijay Salunkhe, chairman of M/s Salunkhe Developers. No developer would be willing to slash the rates further and run into losses. Instead he would prefer to wait, hold on to the stock till the market stabilizes, he added.