Believe spurt in housing demand not pent-up,says HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh

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January 6, 2021 8:21 AM

HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh on Tuesday said that the spurt in demand for homes in the last few months is not pent-up, and is a result of record low interest rates, affordable prices and supportive government policies among other factors.

Deepak Parekh, HDFCParekh said that in his career of over 42 years in the housing sector, he has never seen interest rates at such low levels, which along with fiscal incentives has made housing more affordable today.

HDFC chairman Deepak Parekh on Tuesday said that the spurt in demand for homes in the last few months is not pent-up, and is a result of record low interest rates, affordable prices and supportive government policies among other factors.

“I don’t believe that spurt in housing demand in the last few months is a pent-up demand. The aspirations to own a home is inherent in every household and all of us here are mindful that the country still faces an immense shortage of quality and affordable housing. Yet this goes to show that with supportive government policies, adequate availability of resources and supply of rightly priced homes, the demand for home loans will continue unabated,” Parekh said at an event organised by Moneylife Foundation and HDFC.

As per Anarock Research, the top 7 cities witnessed sales of around 50,900 units in October-December 2020, rebounding to almost 86% of the same period in 2019. Mumbai metropolitan region and Pune together accounted for over 53% of the total share.

Stressing on a strong code of ethics for stakeholders in real estate, Parekh exuded confidence in the Indian housing sector. “Much of this has to do with the government which has prioritised housing on its agenda, recognising the important role that it plays in economy,” he noted.

Parekh said that in his career of over 42 years in the housing sector, he has never seen interest rates at such low levels, which along with fiscal incentives has made housing more affordable today.

Union minister for housing and urban affairs (MoHUA) Hardeep Singh Puri, who released a report on efficacy of RERA at the event, appreciated the role played by Maharashtra in reducing stamp duty, which boosted residential sales. He stressed on the need for transparency in the sector, which he explained could be addressed by creating a central database.

“From my ministry’s point of view, we will work with anyone (state RERA authorities, etc.) for having a central database which will have all the constituent segments. All the stakeholders will have access to it. Because with maximum transparency that you can introduce, you will find that the sector will begin to benefit from that free flow of information,” the minister added.

Earlier, Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Maha Rera) chairman Gautam Chatterjee said the decision to reduce stamp duty by Maharashtra resulted in around 2.5 lakh sales registration across the state. Maha RERA too registered around 1,200 new projects in October-December 2020, which exceeds launches in the same period last year.

Talking about the work done by Maha RERA, Chatterjee said, “Today as we speak, Maha RERA has 27,700 registered projects, 27,000 registered agents and 13,000 complaints filed of which 8,900 have been decided. However, this pendency going over 4,000 complaints is certainly disconcerting and therefore Maha RERA has decided to further activate the conciliation forum to first attempt resolution of these pending complaints through the conciliation process”.

Chatterjee pointed out that an analysis of the complaints, both pending and heard, shows that 94% of the complaints pertains to pre-RERA ongoing projects. “The worrying thing, of course, is that only 50% of the pre-RERA ongoing projects have been completed till date. I am afraid we will have to continue dealing with issues of the pre-RERA era. The pain of transition, it seems, would last much longer than initially expected,” he rued.

On an all India level, RERA authorities have registered about 60,000 projects and 45,723 agents as well as 60,000 complaints have been redressed as part of the dispute resolution machinery. Thirty-four states and union territories (UTs) have notified RERA rules, while 30 states and UTs have set up regulatory authorities and 25 states and UTs have set up appellate tribunals.

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