Take the plunge this Akshay Tritiya
May 01, 2014
Source : The Times of India


MUMBAI: Everybody wants to buy a property during the auspicious festive day of Akshay Tritiya but identifying the right property and right spot is a cumbersome job.

The trick to a successful transaction lies in identifying the right spot while buying property during the festive time. Experts believe that the property market in most Indian cities is largely driven by high demand during festive occasions such as Akshay Tritiya since it is considered auspicious for the creation of wealth and fortune.

It has been observed that buyers who are waiting to plunge into the property market, actually come out and buy during such festive occasions. This is also because builders offer various schemes and discounts in order to attract customers. Over the last one year, sentiments of buyers in Mumbai, among other cities, have been significantly subdued due to various reasons, and investors have also taken a backseat. As a result, there is a huge inventory pileup in the city. However, now the economy has shown some sign of improvement and thus, it would be interesting to see how the market reacts during Akshay Tritiya.

“Akshay Tritiya is a festival which promises good luck and success, in all the projects and ventures that one starts on this day. This is a day in which every single moment is considered auspicious, both, on a spiritual and emotional level. Interestingly, Akshay Tritiya holds more significance for first-time property buyers, who are in no hurry to invest in the property market and prefer to wait for the right moment. Developers too, agree that while people no longer wait for auspicious days like Akshay Tritiya, it still adds a sparkle to the realty action. Having said that, people do tend to prepone or postpone their purchase a bit, if an auspicious day is around,” points out Vivek Mohanani – Joint MD, EKTA World.

In Mumbai, people see Akshay Tritiya as a day for decision making. When it comes to investing in a big ticket asset, people prefer this day as an auspicious day and everything bought or purchased on such a day, brings them good luck as per their religious beliefs. Other aspects which attract both, property buyers as well as realtors, are the exclusive offers which are available in the market. Be it discounts, cost reductions, new car with a house, surprise gifts with bookings, etc., a lot is offered to attract buyers.

Is it the right time to buy?

“A lot of hope is pinned on the outcome of the elections and the realty market here, will react based on who will form the government. Currently, buyers and investors are in the wait-and-watch mode. Buyers are hoping that the recent change in the FSI norms in Mumbai might bring in some reduction in prices. Realtors are also not hoping for much of a change during this festive season but are largely waiting for the newly elected government to come into power. Developers, on their part, might attract customers with various discounts,” opines Sumit Jain, co-founder, CEO, Common-Floor.com.

Attractive spots to buy property in Mumbai

The property prices within Mumbai are very high, compared to other metros. As a result, genuine buyers and investors have turned towards the outskirts of Mumbai, where prices are relatively cheaper than most of the localities within the city, opined experts and further said that from the end user perspective, areas to watch out for during this festive season, include Mira Road to Vasai to Virar and up to Palghar. The Kalyan-Dombivili stretch and even Badlapur, is also good from an end-user perspective. Nerul is also emerging as a good, affordable location for property buying. From an investor’s perspective too, the same localities are good viable options. This is mainly because these localities are comparatively more affordable than most within the city, and the current trend shows that investors are now more inclined towards low-ticket prices rather than big-ticket prices. This shift is common in most major cities across the country.

“One of the best stretches to buy property in is the Eastern Mumbai District. Comprised of the areas around Vangani, Karjat, Neral, Shelu, and Khopoli, the Eastern Mumbai District is on the periphery of the city and yet, is one of the most attractive addresses for 2014. The land parcels are right between the rapidly growing areas of Mumbai and Pune and yet, remain excellent for ‘smart’ housing. People are taking note, and the regional infrastructure is growing outwards, to link it more tightly to the two cities. It boasts an excellent array of schools, and is beginning to draw large employers as well. For home buyers this year, who want the benefits of the big city with a peaceful environment, the Eastern Mumbai District is the new hot location of the year, and is an excellent buy during Akshay Tritiya,” says Rajesh Krishnan, MD and CEO, BrickEagle.

Experts believe that people nowadays, prefer less to live in the main hub. They are looking for bigger houses within an affordable price range, along with a fully equipped lifestyle. Modern amenities are also being preferred. Transport to the main city is not a problem anymore. So, people are choosing distant places that are beyond the suburbs. The positive sentiment associated with festivals, often motivates fence-sitting buyers to take the plunge where they would otherwise, have procrastinated further. “Property rates are not only decided on the basis of land value – it is mainly the surrounding infrastructure that adds to the value of a location. Hence, any location preferable to the buyer, according to his/her need would be an attractive spot for buying a property,” explains Mohanani and further adds that “Buyers should ideally choose a location in a progressive and developing neighbourhood, where the house will appreciate in value over the years, only because of the overall conveniences it will provide to future buyers/investors.”

Property buyers should look for availability of shopping and grocery outlets, basic entertainment and transport facilities, schools, medical establishments, friendly people next door, and so on. The availability of schools in the neighbourhood is still important from the resale value point of view. This applies to most other conveniences like public transport, postal facilities, etc.

Buy, but smartly!

The festive season is often the time when builders offer various schemes or freebies or good deals. As a result, buyers can negotiate well with the builders, especially in the present market scenario. Still, buyers need to be cautious and not get lured blindly by the offers made by builders. Various schemes and offers also vary from builder to builder. The best way to avail the best deal during this festive season is to select your preferred locality as mentioned above. Then, talk to your selected builder a week in advance because several developers may not openly publicise the deals on offer. It is better that buyers do their homework prior to finalising a deal.

Ready to move or new launch property?

“Property buyers in the current situation prefer newly launched projects rather than bungalows or ready possession property. The main reason for this is that people are opting for better features in a house. In fact, apartments are now the preferred option of property buyers, as bungalows or individual houses are slowly getting clichéd. A large variety of facilities and secured houses are being promoted more, which in turn, interest the buyers,” explains Atul J Trivedi, CMO, Rashmi Realty Builders.

Experts believe that apart from the basic research on the locality’s infrastructural developments, market rate, etc., the purpose of the purchase, whether for self-occupation or investment, would be a crucial factor in this decision making. For the former, one would prefer a home that is near completion while for a second home or investment, it is the distinct rate advantage that the buyer will get. Currently, the general trend seen in most cities including Mumbai, is that buyers, particularly end-users, are opting for ready-to-move-in property or a property which would be ready for possession within the next 4-6 months. This is a far better and viable option because of various reasons. By buying such properties, the buyer actually mitigates construction risk. Several newly launched projects, are often getting delayed owing to multiple reasons including change in government policies affecting the construction, developer fund crunch, increase in construction cost, etc.

Eventually, the customer has to bear the brunt. Thus, to reduce the risk it becomes imperative that he opts for ready-to-move-in property or soon-to-be-ready property where buyers can see the physical state of their property. “In the wake of the general elections in the country, it is natural that various new projects or certain redevelopment projects are stuck and not getting approvals. As a result, ready-to-move-in property is a far safer bet. However, from an investment perspective, newly launched projects may be a better option as the money has to be paid in regular installments and the buyer also enjoys a fair price deal. The investor however, must be very careful about the builder’s credibility and his previous records. While most Grade A builders may be a safe bet, there are small developers who may take buyers for a ride. Therefore, buyers must do a thorough check before taking the plunge,” concludes Jain.

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