India’s real estate sector has seen strong resilience to the pandemic that hit the economy over the past year. Despite setbacks, the industry very quickly re-aligned itself to the new normal with digital interventions and was soon back in recovery mode. The second wave of the pandemic changed the atmosphere for home buyers and investors in the country, and there is now greater demand for home ownership with health, hygiene and safety in mind. The macroeconomic recovery has also shown a clear recovery in the real estate sector, which has led to a positive trend in recent months. The appetite for middle-income residential property is growing and people want to buy homes sooner than they expected given the current pandemic scenario. Developers have analyzed the healthy lifestyle trend and have shifted their interest to developing projects that meet the changing needs of new age shoppers in a post-Covid world. Against the background of this change of mood, it is important to grasp the new trends in the real estate industry.
Real estate is now a buyer’s market
As the pandemic subsides further, noticeable changes in consumer behavior and market sentiment are shaping new trends in the segment. The real estate sector has now evolved into a buyer’s market and today, with an increased awareness of buying preferences, consumers are focusing on tailored offers to help them make the best investment decisions. Buyers also have the option to digitally view and research projects before buying. Customer focus is shaping the Indian real estate sector and it is important to recognize the shift in their views on buying property.
Prefers larger, healthy houses
The pandemic has given homeowners the time to ponder the worth of the space they call home. After spending a lot of time indoors over the past year and a half, home buyers are now realizing the value of a multifunctional home. The demand for slightly larger apartments with additional rooms such as a workplace, a reading corner or an activity room has certainly increased. Given the increasing amount of time they spend at home, home buyers are identifying projects with well-designed apartments that give them extra breathing space.
Access to a wide infrastructure
Locations that have a strong mix of physical and social infrastructure and are relatively cheaper compared to expensive locations have seen higher demand recently. Home buyers prefer properties with easy access in terms of access to transportation hubs such as bus and subway stations and taxi services to prominent locations and the central business district, as well as access to hospitals, educational institutions, supermarkets, parks, entertainment and leisure centers. Today, most homebuyers want to improve their lifestyles and are ready to blow their budgets a little more to ensure they can find homes that also offer comfort, space, and convenience.
Apartments that are ready to move in are gaining traction
Ready-to-move-in space will continue to be the top priority of today’s discerning customers who don’t want to wait endlessly for their property and expect quick ownership. Projects that are ready to move into or about to be completed are in greater demand than objects under construction. Given the pandemic and the need to be safe, buyers are eager to buy a home in a short period of time. Interest in villas is also increasing, as they serve the purpose of an independent house, but are at the same time in a community with many amenities.
Lower interest rates increase demand
As the vaccination campaign intensifies and the central bank maintains its supportive stance in setting interest rates at historic lows, residential demand will pick up sharply in the quarters ahead as buyers borrow at lower rates. RBI’s firm commitment to maintain the status quo has boosted market demand. The segment remains the safest investment option and government incentives with guaranteed higher and secured returns are attracting investors to bolster market sentiment. Home ownership sentiment is also influenced by decision drivers such as developers’ flexible payment plans.
Brand developers gain strength
In the industry, more people are likely to prefer real estate from prominent brands than disorganized and smaller providers. Buyers review the brands’ history, their performance, the standards they met, the quality offered, and the delivery schedule. Preference is given to financially stable developers with a good track record, execution skills, and high quality projects that are gaining significant market share.
The pandemic has changed the market and 2021 is a turning point for the Indian real estate sector. The segment now understands the ânew normalâ and is better prepared than last year. Imagination, innovation and digital transformation will drive the industry, and with new trends, the real estate industry will soon enter a new phase of growth. The real estate sector is proving time and time again that investing in this asset can deliver robust returns. As the pandemic subsides, the segment will be the main pillar for boosting Indian economic growth.
Disclaimer of liability
The views expressed above are the author’s own.
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