More and more people are going online to check out properties, and this festive season has seen a spike of 10% in sales from realty websites.
“This is the first festive season after almost three years in which sales have increased by 10% to 12% compared to last year’s drop of 5%. We are hoping for a 20% spike in sales by the end of the season. This trend is a manifestation of new-found confidence among buyers who have been sitting on the fence so far,” says Sunil Mishra, chief business officer (primary sales) of online property website PropTiger.
With the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act (RERA) likely to be implemented by next year, the recent interest rate cut and the 7th Pay Commission payouts have made buyers optimistic. Because of RERA, buyers feel they will enter a regime where their interests will be taken care of. The last few Supreme Court orders where some prominent builders have been taken to task for delay in delivery of apartments have also sent out a strong message. Both the impending regulatory move and judicial action are seen as enhancing confidence among homebuyers. And the confluence of these two factors coinciding with the festive season makes us hopeful that sales will hit the 20% mark this year, says Mishra.
At the national level the maximum demand this season has been in the 2BHK category. As much as 51% sales are taking place in the affordable segment, 21% in the Rs 50 lakh to Rs 75 lakh category and 28% in the Rs 75 lakh-plus category, he says.
Where NCR data is concerned, in Gurgaon 8% sales are happening in the category below Rs 50 lakh; 60% in the Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore category and 32% in the Rs 1 crore-plus category. In Noida, 60% sales are in the below `50 lakh category, 37% in the Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore segment and only about 3% in the Rs 1 crore segment.
So how does buying property online help? First, it reduces the time spent on searching for a property and second it gives yet another opportunity to buyers to negotiate further on the price. Besides, simulations or 3D projections of apartments give an idea to buyers about the property will look like, the amount of sunlight it will get etc. Buyers also have the freedom to negotiate further offline once they have made a choice, says Mishra.
According to a report by realty website 99acres, old projects launched more than 12 months ago accounted for 60% of the total sales during the September quarter, indicating buyers’ preference for projects which are showing visible progress in construction.
The fastest moving properties in NCR are priced between Rs 40 lakh to Rs 55 lakh. Consumers have shown interest in ready-to-move-in properties and those likely to be ready by early next year. Most developers this season are clubbing both ready-to-move-in properties and apartments launched a year back which have not moved as per their expectations. Both choices are being offered to consumers. Builders are using the festive season as an opportunity to liquidate their unsold inventory, says Neeraj Sharma, executive vice president, sales, 99acres.