MUMBAI: Assuming that a buyer learns of both new and resale options in the location of choice, it is important to understand the benefits of opting for the former:
• Flats in new projects by good developers tend to be more energy efficient, environmentally compliant, user-friendly and space optimized. Reputable developers are like doctors – they are constantly upgrading their knowledge, techniques and equipment. They do this to remain relevant and competitive in a market which they know to be replete with other options for buyers. The benefits of this mind-set are directly passed on to the buyers.
• It is very difficult – if not impossible – to paint a unique masterpiece on a used canvas. Previous owners of a resale flat always leave a certain indelible part of their personality or culture imprinted on the property. While it is possible to fill in and paint over nail holes in unwanted parts of the wall, undoing serious structural modifications is a challenge.
• New flats in under-construction and sometimes even ready-to-move-in projects can, in fact, be cheaper than resale flats. In the case of under-construction projects, the sale value of individual units rise only in tandem with the stages of completion. But resale flats often cost as much as (if not more than) new apartments because the relative cost of original acquisition was higher. This is often a function of obsolete construction methods, which are costlier and more wasteful than more evolved construction technologies.
• New flats have higher resale value and also longer shelf-life on the resale market because of the lower age of the building.
Home purchase is never a decision one should make in a hurry. Also, regardless of whether a new flat is slightly cheaper or marginally costlier than a resale apartment, it should not be made solely on the consideration of budget. Few investment decisions have as many long-term financial implications and appreciation potential as property purchase.
It is therefore important to understand the pros and cons of old versus new flats, and to always take an informed call when it comes to buying a home.