Real Estate: “the road ahead”

The road ahead
Shilpa Sachdev
 The Times of India (Mumbai edition) 

In the last few years, the real estate sector has consolidated itself rather well and changed the landscape of the city. Newer locations and better projects have become the talk of the town. But there remain a number of areas where crucial work still needs to be done to bring about a real impact on the growth of the city. Initiatives from the government, a hand-in-hand support from the developers and the changing lifestyle of the buyer, everyone has a role to play.

Ravi Ahuja, MRICS, executive director, development services, India, Cushman & Wakefield says: “Demand is created by growth of industries, a variable factor leading to distinct growth patterns. There have been significant lifestyle changes over the last five to seven years in cities like Mumbai and Pune, particularly given the advent of nuclear families with double income households, wherein families would ideally like the walk-to-work concept with all their social and economic needs taken care of by way of amenities and proximity to the social infrastructure.

Things to know before buying a property under construction
Economic Times

When 30-year-old Gurgaon-based Vikas Aggarwal decided to buy a house last year, he opted for one that was being constructed. “I had leased a house for a year, so I thought it would be a good idea to go for a flat that is inching towards completion. The developer was offering a 15% discount on the market rate and promised to hand it over in January this year, says Aggarwal, a CA who works with an MNC. But it has been three months past the deadline and Aggarwal is yet to get possession.”

Every time we go to the builder, he gives us some or the other reason for the delay. Instead of shifting to our own house and saving on rent, we had to renew the lease, says Aggarwal’s wife, Archana.

Wake up to the reality
Aggarwal’s case isn’t unique. These days, project delays have virtually become a norm, which is why the buyer needs to be careful.

“When you buy property during a soft launch or before launch, check the location, the future prospects of the project and whether the developer is capable of delivering on time, says Pankaj Kapoor, managing director, Liases Foras, a Mumbai-based realty research firm. “If the market crashes suddenly, or the developer runs out of money, or the bank stops funding, the project could be in a limbo, he adds.

Soaring input costs keep realty prices up
Business Standard

Many prospective buyers of homes have been deferring their decision to buy, hoping for property prices to come down. But many realtors say prices won’t correct, as input prices have soared in the past few months and demand is still holding on.

Sunil Mantri of Mumbai-based Sunil Mantri Realty believes prices may actually go another 10 per cent in cities like Mumbai, as there’s not much supply expected, with approvals (for building plans) getting delayed.

‘‘Prices coming down is a myth. Neither has demand come down nor supply increased. If anything, the demand-supply gap is widening. With the economy growing and salaries rising, how do you expect real estate prices to remain the same?’’ asked Lalit Kumar Jain, chairman of Pune-based Kumar Developers.

Beyond borders
Munieshwer A Sagar
 Hindustan Times (Chandigarh edition) 

In Chandigarh, say local realty experts, prices almost doubled in 2010. Since affordability was already an issue, the rise pushed the end-user beyond the city limits. The best alternative to Chandigarh in terms of infrastructure and quality of life and prices is Panchkula.

Hospitality Sector

IHG to open 45 hotels in India
Mumbai/Pune
 Business Standard 

Luxury hotel group InterContinental Hotels is planning to open over 45 hotel properties across India by 2015.

Commercial Realty Sector

Demand up in office market
Prabhakar Sinha
 The Times of India (Delhi edition) 

The current uptrend in the economy has finally started reflecting on the demand for commercial real estate in the country. In turn, the increase in demand for office space will also soon start reflecting in the sale of residential real estate too. According to a report on Indian office market by CB Richard Ellis, a global realty consultancy firm, the first quarter of 2011 saw a 20 percent increase (almost 6 million sq ft) in the demand for office space across key markets in the country vis-a-vis the same period last year. The National Capital Region (NCR) of Delhi accounted for 27 percent (more than 1.6 million sq ft) of the total space absorbed in the country.

Anshuman Magazine, the managing director of CB Richards Ellis, says: “The office market across India continues to grow. With corporates renewing their expansion plans across most industry sectors, demand levels and transaction velocity are expected to remain buoyant in the near to midterm. However, with significant supply in the market, rentals are expected to remain under pressure except for Grade A office space in a few key micromarkets.”

Economy

HDFC Bank Q4 net up 33% at Rs 1,115 crore
Times of India

MUMBAI: HDFC Bank Ltd, India’s third-largest lender, posted a 33 percent rise in the fourth quarter profit, beating street estimates, as demand for credit and fee income rose in the fast growing Asian economy.

The bank said its net profit in the January-March quarter rose to 11.15 billion rupees ($251 million) from 8.37 billion rupees a year ago.

A Reuters poll had projected net profit for the New York listed bank at 10.99 billion rupees.

Bhubaneswar amongst top Tier II cities in job creation: ASSOCHAM
Economic Times

BHUBANESWAR: Bhubaneswar recorded a surge of 42.2% followed by Pune (19.7%) in total employment generation amongst 17 major Tier II cities of India, according to a just concluded study by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM).

In its study on “Current Job Trends in India”, Assocham analyzed employment avenues in as many as 56 major cities, including Tier I, II and Tier III cities across 32 sectors from a sample of over 6.5 lakh employment opportunities during the last fiscal.

India among world’s top 7 economies under G-20 scanner
Business Standard

The G-20 on Friday announced that International Monetary Fund (IMF) would review policies of the world’s seven largest economies, including India and China, with the objective of rectifying flaws before they imperil growth.

The US, Japan, Germany, France and Britain are the other five countries that influence the global economy.

The seven countries would be examined for economically destabilizing policies, such as large government budget deficits and debt, high personal saving rates and debt, or big trade surpluses or deficits, the G-20 club said after taking the decision at a meeting of member finance ministers and heads of their central banks.

India, China fast emerging as new tech powerhouses; to drive IT growth this decade
Economic Times

WASHINGTON: India and China coming up fast as new tech powerhouses will drive much of the growth in information technology over the next ten years, according to a new report.

Though a big gap still exists between these emerging markets and developed nations, that gap is bound to narrow over the next decade, the Forbes magazine said citing a recent Global Information Technology Report by the World Economic Forum.

‘FMS biz to grow over 25 pc annually over the next 3-5 yrs’
Economic Times

MUMBAI: With the Indian real estate market growing rapidly over the last few years, real estate consultants feel that facilities management services ( FMS) business in the sector will grow at an annual rate of over 25 per cent over the next 3-5 years.

“With the real estate sector undergoing a revival and emphasis on urban development and modernisation of office spaces growing, the facility management business in this space is set for rapid growth. We feel the FM industry will grow at 25 per cent CAGR over the next 3-5 years,” said Naushad Panjwani, Executive Director (Facilities Management and Project Management) of Knight Frank India.

Education, infrastructure top of 12th plan agenda
My Digital FC

We can’t beat China even at 9% growth for 20 yrs: Montek

Education, health and infrastructure will be the priority areas of the 12th five-year plan,

according to the Planning Commission deputy chairman, Montek Singh Ahluwalia. Besides, the plan will also propose ‘drastic action’ to fix problems in the power sector.

He said on Sunday that it was “probably overambitious” to aim at a double-digit growth in the five-year plan beginning next year. Though, he hastened to add that the exact growth target was yet to be fixed.

He said it would be good if 9 per cent GDP growth could be achieved annually as the global economy was not doing well. “Looking forward, the world economy is not doing well. If India grows at an average of 8.5 per cent in 12th plan period, it would be counted as a very good performance. If we do 9 per cent, it will be excellent. I should add that to get 9 per cent growth or a little over 9 per cent a lot of work has to be done. If we try to take it up by 1 per cent from the 11th plan achievement, it will be 9.2 per cent,” Ahluwalia told Financial Chronicle.

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