Despite the slowdown that the realty sector has been facing in times of COVID-19, the current scenario presents opportunities to both developers and buyers.
While there have been many opinions and no clear answers on whether you should buy a home now, the pandemic has certainly made people – especially the first-time buyers – realise the importance of homeownership. This alone is a very encouraging sentiment for the realty sector, both from a demand and supply perspective.
Home is indeed a tangible asset and there are many upsides to owning one. While developers may lean on innovative ways for consumer outreach, let’s look at some of the points that a buyer should keep in mind while investing at this point:
The pricing – repo rate interplay
This is possibly an opportune time to consider real estate. To begin with, RBI has announced many cuts in the repo rate. This is having a southward impact on interest rates, as most of the banks have reduced the repo-rate linked home loan rates to the lowest ever.
On the other hand, developers will be keen to sell and accelerate cash flows. One will witness a slew of promotions in the market to reduce the risk for buyers and help manage their cash outflow. Since COVID-19 has caused 10% depreciation in the Indian rupee, it should also be a critical driver to be considered in the Indian realty. Hence, this could be the right time to close a deal.
The tech interfaces
If the consumer has sampled the product and visited the sales office pre-lockdown; one is better equipped to decide. In case one has not, the buyer should leverage technology to get a simulated experience of the development and the neighbourhood.
If a developer is keen to sell during this period, they will make it a point to take the customer through the journey, which is as immersive as it would have been in a face to face interaction – be it a virtual tour of the development, show residence or locational nuances.
Indulge in the decision-making grid
The virtuosity of real estate as an asset class is more pronounced than ever. Experts believe that real estate will prove to be a good asset class, which will continue to generate income and capital value appreciation. Indulging in a decision-making matrix might be sensible: do online research to shortlist properties, check the background of the developer and development, visit the RERA website to know about the regulatory aspects of the project and virtually sample the product. Doing so will at least help the consumer attain the decision-making continuum.
Although the sector has been hit by the pandemic, yet developers can restore business by using the aforementioned techniques. For buyers, on the other hand, it is rather an opportune time to finalise their buying decisions and benefit from the available offerings. The indication is very clear. Despite the slowdown that the realty sector has been facing in times of COVID-19, the current scenario presents opportunities to both developers and buyers.
(By Samujjwal Ghosh, Director, Xanadu Realty)