Bhubaneswar:Real estate sector in the Capital City is a buyer’s market today. This year, the sector is providing over 4,000 housing units whereas the demand is roughly for 2,000 to 3,000 units.
And with this increased supply, prices have dipped from Rs 4,000 per sq ft to around Rs 2,000 per sq ft, making housing units accessible to the middle class.
The situation was way different till five years back when there were hardly 50 real estate developers who set up projects with 50 to 60 housing units each. Now, most of them are coming up with massive projects where housing units range anywhere between 500 and 2,000 units. In fact, with customers getting a wide range to choose from - be it ready-to-move apartments or budget apartments that come in the price bracket of ` 15 to 20 lakh - they are now bargaining for better amenities. And the real estate developers are also obliging by offering sops like a swimming pool, a gym, etc., or even exempting maintenance fees for a few years for the customer to stay in the race.
Director of The Roof, a city-based real estate agency, Smruti Ranjan Samal explains that as literacy about real estate is steadily increasing amongst the public, so is their bargaining power. “Prices of housing units have been rectified and are now within reach of the middle class. People nowadays prefer to live in apartments because of the security and a community environment that they offer,” said Samal. Of late, around 10 luxury housing projects have also made an entry into the city.
Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) also contributed to the rising skyline of Bhubaneswar by simplifying and liberalising permissions required for setting up new housing projects.
This month, the BDA took a decision to implement Right to Public Service (RTPS) Act for housing plan approval process from January 1. Under the present system, anyone applying for housing plan approval to BDA gets it within 60 days.
In the changed system, officials responsible for the delay beyond 60 days, will pay fine as per the Act. “The number of housing project applications we get has increased manifold in the past few years,” said BDA planning member P K Patnaik.
This year, BDA also announced some major housing projects targeted at providing low cost housing units for the urban poor as a part of the slum-free city. Two such major project will come up at Chandrasekharpur and Shampur. However, in the face of the boom, questions are being raised on the preparedness of the civic body to meet the requirements of infrastructure.
As the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Associations of India (CREDAI), Odisha, president D S Tripathy points out the real hurdle is the lack of infrastructure like drainage and roads that connect the city with its outskirts where major real estate boom is taking place.
With major IT companies like Mindtree and Infosys coming up in the periphery of the city, real estate developers are even targeting these areas.