New Delhi: The realty market has been abuzz with activity this festival season. Discounts, freebies, various financing schemes and advertisements across various media are making buyers sit up and look for the best deal.
On the back of positive sentiment, developers are even going ahead with new launches, in contrast to hardly any new projects in the past two years. This was mainly due to an economic slowdown and a need to clear the backlog. As many as 100 new launches have been planned this season, mainly in the National Capital Region (NCR), Mumbai, Bangalore and Pune. One developer, Lotus Greens, launched four projects on the same late last month, with an investment of Rs 4,400 crore.
This festival period from October to December is expected to garner sales of at least 60,000 units across seven major cities, almost double that recorded in the past two years. Average annual sales are expected to reach 200,000 units this year, with a good festival season contributing 30-40 per cent to the total. In the past two years, sales were 120,000-140,000 units annually, with very few of those during the festival season, according to sector estimates.
"This time (festival season) has created a buzz. This will definitely encourage more people to come and invest in the real estate. And, there is more on the supply side as well, with so many new launches. The activity on the ground will improve and this a good time for end-users to enter the market," said Anshuman Magazine, chairman and managing director, CBRE South Asia.
Developers and brokers are giving discounts in the range of eight to 12 per cent, along with offers such as free parking space or club membership, beside free LEDs, iPhones and gold coins, along with a chance to win tickets to a foreign trip.
Many developers are also offering schemes wherein one pays 10/20 per cent upfront at booking and rest at the time of possession. In between, the buyer pays no monthly instalments.
A realty firm from the NCR, CHD Developers, has come out with festival offers under three categories - existing client base, prospective buyers and influencers. "For the existing customers, we are offering one per cent discount on payment received on or before time on EMIs (equated monthly instalments). Besides, a three to four per cent discount across all properties for a purchase made during the festive season," said Ravi Saund, its head of operations.
For channel partners, CHD is arranging foreign trips for sale conversion target achievements and offering a flat commission to influencers other than a non-sales person, whose referral would lead to conversion of a unit sale.
Brotin Banerjee, managing director, Tata Housing, says: "Due to the recovering economy, there is some improvement, resulting in an increase in enquiries. Also, there is stability in prices over the past few quarters. The stability in the market has resulted in buyers coming forward in this festive season to purchase their dream homes. We believe the economy should completely recover by the first quarter of next year."
However, despite the increased marketing activities by developers, many experts feel a revival in the sector is at least a year away. "Investors are still shying away from coming in the realty market. Unless the market starts picking up, which is expected by next year-end, and all economic parameters are moving in the right direction, it will be difficult to attract investors (who look for appreciation in the property in the short to long term)," says Magazine.
Over recent years, the realty market has been witnessing a slowdown. Declining sales, high inventory and a fund crunch have marked the past two years for real estate developers, now banking on the festival season to push up sales and give a momentum to the sector.