More than 60 years after India became a Republic , the country has seen phenomenal changes. It has gained recognition globally as a major player in the world economy. This is also reflected in the journey of the Indian real estate sector, which has emerged as one of the significant contributors to the country’s GDP.
The country has witnessed a tremendous housing boom, specifically in the last decade. Newer locations have come to the fore expanding the boundaries further. While the metropolitan cities continue to remain in demand, even Tier II and Tier III cities are fast gaining momentum on account of their commercial and strategic viability . On the policy level, liberalization indeed threw open the floodgates of the country’s development .
Surabhi Arora, MRICS, Associate Director – Research, Colliers International says, “The sector started flourishing with India embarking on broad-based liberalization in post 1990’s era when various multinational corporates started seeking permission to commence operations in India. Mumbai, being the financial capital of India, was the first city to witness the influx of financial and services multinational companies. By 1997, the real estate prices increased to the point where the companies started looking for cheaper, cost-effective locations and Indian real estate witnessed emergence of new alternative/peripheral business districts in all the major cities in India.”
Read more: The Economic Times
Discounts through real estate group buys
In ‘group buying’, buyers join hands to get discounts from sellers on products and services. Many portals facilitate such deals by bringing together buyers into groups and tying up with sellers of various hues – restaurants, apparel vendors, gadget retailers. But ‘group buying’ need not be restricted to small-ticket items. It is also possible on real estate purchases – the largest investment for many people in their lifetime. Portals such as groffr, discountedflats, groupbookings and grouphomebuyers help potential home buyers in many Indian cities form groups and get discounts from builders.
The concept is based on a simple premise that a group has more negotiating power than an individual. When you buy as a group, you can drive a harder bargain and get a better deal. The seller may not mind, since what he loses as margin, he makes up in volumes, without investing much time, effort and money to sell his wares.
In real estate, group buying can benefit both home buyers and builders. With real estate in many Indian cities, especially in the metros being very costly, even a 1 per cent discount, if genuine, can translate into a tidy sum. A big discount could save you lakhs. Also, many builders may be willing to participate in such group deals, since they may want to sell their inventory quickly to get much needed cash. Especially in a market in which buyers are shying away due to high cost and many builders are saddled with high debt and inventory.
Read more: Business Line
Three Main Policies under Master Plan Delhi 2021
Policy 1 – Farmhouse/country homes policy
In November last year, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) passed the farmhouses/country homes policy. One part of the policy deals with regularising the existing farmhouses. These farmhouses, usually of size 2.5 acre and above, are in the range of Rs 15 to Rs 20 crore per acre. These are located in zone J under the Master Plan 2021 that consists of areas such as Neb Sarai, Mehrauli, Satbari and Chhattarpur — primarily land between NH8 and NH2, right from Rajokri and Chattarpur.
Policy 2 – Land pooling policy
It governs three distinct areas. First is the availability of contagious land parcels for future development. Second is the availability of land to the government for infrastructure and the third aspect relates to a fair policy towards the current landowners and their participation in the development process. As for its impact, owners will be able to get better valuation of land. It’ll be open to public debate by the second quarter.
Policy 3 – Increased far policy
Delhi has 11,000 hectares of land under the green belt. The city has to accommodate a population of one crore within the urbanisable area of L, M and N zones over the next couple of decades. To create dwelling units and commensurate infrastructure, going vertical has become a necessity. To facilitate that, the government is mulling an increase in floor area ratio (FAR) from 400 to 600 as against the current notified level of 200. More units, thus, will be created.
(HT Estates, Page 6)
Gurgaon to get 50 new AC buses
In a major boost to the city bus service, Haryana transport department plans to add as many as 50 new air-conditioned low-floor buses to the fleet from first week of March. This would raise the number of buses to 150 which will run in two shifts.
The transport department plans to increase the number of routes from present 12 to 30 in the coming months. A spokesperson said that at present 90 buses are operational on 12 different routes and plan was also being prepared for the expansion of these routes.
“For this, survey work has already been started for which a committee under the chairmanship of transport manager has been constituted. Representatives of drivers, conductors and of other wings have been included in the committee,” the spokesperson added.
Roadways hope that the additional buses will provide last mile connectivity to city residents. Presently, according to roadways officials, one lakh passengers are availing the bus facilities on daily basis.
Read more: The Times of India
NHAI may extend deadline for Gurgaon e-way works
By January 31, overlaying on the entire Delhi-Gurgaon stretch was to be completed, as per an agreement signed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), the project concessionaire and Infrastructure Development Financing Company (IDFC). In a big relief to all the stakeholders, NHAI allowed IDFC to take 74% stake in the project on January 30 and is likely to extend deadlines for this work and all other milestones.
As per the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between the concessionaire, NHAI and the lead lender (IDFC), the highways authority has the right to terminate the contract in case the milestones are not met.
Sources in the highways authority said IDFC will have to manage the expressway efficiently since in case of poor performance and termination of the project, the financial institution will get less than Rs 300 crore from NHAI.
“This is as per the provisions in concession agreement. NHAI guarantees paying back only 90% of the original debt in case there is termination. The original cost of the project was only Rs 555 crore and hence the debt liability for NHAI less. We have nothing to do with the Rs 1,600 crore loan for this project that the concessionaire had managed to get from financial institutions,” said an official. IDFC has about Rs 10,000 crore exposure into the road sector.
Read more: The Times of India
Bahadurgarh in Haryana set to be on Metro map
Bahadurgarh in Haryana will become the second town in Haryana to be connected with the national capital through Delhi Metro as the foundation stone for construction of a 12-km corridor was laid today.
Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath and Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda jointly laid the foundation stone for the construction of the nearly 12km Metro corridor between Mundka and Bahadurgarh at Sector 9, Bahadurgarh today.
The 11.181 kilometre long corridor between Mundka and Bahadurgarh will be entirely elevated with seven stations — four in Delhi and three in Haryana.
It will be an extension of the already operational Inderlok-Mundka corridor (Line 5) and will run on standard gauge.
An agreement regarding the same was also signed between the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) and Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA).
To be built at a cost of Rs 1,991 crore, the corridor will be completed by March 2016.
The Metro corridor will run along National Highway -10 (Rohtak Road) on an elevated viaduct and the expected daily ridership by the year 2016 will be 1.42 lakh which would increase to 1.97 lakh by 2021.
The civil construction work of this corridor is expected to start by July and areas which will benefit by this corridor are Mundka, Ghevra, Tikri Kalan in Delhi and parts of Bahadurgarh in Jhajjar district of Haryana.
Read more: The Economic Times
DDA to complete master plan review by mid-2013
They might have overshot their December deadline for completion of the Master Plan 2021 review by over a month , but DDA is hopeful of completing it by June-July 2013. Union urban development minister Kamal Nath had indicated last year that the mid-term review would be completed by the end of 2012. Sources, however, said that each amendment in the master plan had to go through a number of procedures like the board of inquiry and authority meetings, besides giving the public three months for filing objections/suggestions, so the December 2012 deadline was unrealistic.
By January 2013, only 23 amendments have been finalized. Another 21 have been placed before the public. Later, they will be taken up by DDA and then sent to the ministry for final notification. “The third lot is being processed and will be put up before the different advisory groups. These amendments have to be first shown to the public, so this may take time,” said an official. Sources said the next meeting for the master plan review is expected to be held in mid-February. DDA had brought out a public notice inviting suggestions/objections for the first lot of 23 amendments on October 1, 2012, giving the public 90 days to file their feedback.
Read more: The Times of India
DDA starts satellite imaging of its land
With an eye on the Master Plan Delhi 2021, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has embarked on a project to prepare digital maps of all its land.
The land acquired by DDA in the Capital is spread over an area of more than 70,000 acres of which a substantial area still faces the problem of encroachments. The face of Delhi has changed drastically in the last few decades but is not reflected in the aged land records of the authority.
Therefore, to get a clearer picture of the land under its control, DDA is now going to digitise its land records and collate it with the updated Google maps. A laboratory has been established at the DDA headquarter Vikas Sadan by its systems department and the work has kicked off.
“Latest satellite images will help us in getting a fair idea of the ground conditions on the land that belongs to us but is spread across the city,” said a senior DDA official who didn’t wish to be named. “This will help us to focus on all land development based on ground realities instead of old records,” he said.
Read more: Hindustan Times
Govt pushing for easier auto, housing loans
The government is prodding banks for faster disbursal of retail loans and achieving a 20% growth in the portfolio year-on-year to encourage households to spend more on homes, cars and consumer goods as part of a broader strategy to reverse the slowdown in the economy.
“There is no set target, but banks have to play a major role in pushing economic growth,” a government official, who did not wish to be identified, told HT.
The economy is likely headed to record its worst growth in a decade.
Automobile sales growth crawled at 4.6% during April to December 2012 against 11% in the previous year, supporting the view that high inflation and interest rates are hurting discretionary consumer spending.
Last week, the RBI cut the repo rate – the key lending rate at which it gives out funds to banks – by 0.25 percentage points to 7.75%, the first such reduction in nine months.
Read more: Hindustan Times