Almost half of the people looking for a house on the internet are in the 25-35 year age bracket, search trends compiled by real estate aggregators show.
The maximum demand is for affordable houses (below Rs 50 lakh) in cities such as Bengaluru, Mumbai, Pune and Noida.
“The pan-India searches made on our platform shows that 57% of users searching for homes online, are men,” said Nikhil Rungta, CMO, Housing.com.
“Purchasing a property online becomes very convenient. There is no hassle of visiting the property as the updates come on the mail. Even the documentation can be done online,” said Amalan Fernando, a Mumbai-resident, who recently booked a flat online.
The online broker found that a major proportion of searches were for 2 BHK flats in the sub Rs 50-lakh range. For instance in Delhi, nearly 75% of the searches were for flats below Rs 50 lakh.
“Most of the users generally look for the properties in the city they live in. However, in Bangalore people seem to view upcoming locations as value-for-money propositions, with 34% of its users looking for houses outside Bangalore,” Rungta said.
On an average the portal gets around 3.5 million visitors in a month, Rungta added.
Not just aggregators, even developers have started looking at capturing the online demand.
Tata Housing, which claims to be the first developer to sell homes online, feels internet has emerged as a major factor influencing consumer behavior.
However, online property sales are still nascent. Tata Housing has sold 2,500 homes online in the past two years, but the company is bullish. It expects its online platform to contribute 30% of its sales in the next three-four years.
“The virtual medium has broken down barriers between a buyer and a seller. And with time being a major concern for consumers, we were always looking to ease the home buying experience,” said Brotin Banerjee, MD and CEO, Tata Housing.
Developers have started giving virtually tours of the entire project online. For safe payments, they have their own integrated payment gateways.
Snapdeal, India’s second largest e-commerce company, has a special category for real estate. “It is the next big category and the seriousness is coming from the fact that we have seen a monthly growth of 20 to 25% in the first quarter of 2016,” said Tony Navin, senior V-P, strategic initiatives, Snapdeal.
Snapdeal expects to register close to Rs 2,000 crore worth of properties by March 2017.