Real estate firms chase buyers with innovative schemes this festive season to beat COVID-19 blues

Real estate firms chase buyers with innovative schemes this festive season to beat COVID-19 blues

By Administrator_ India

Capital Sands

As the festival season begins this weekend in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, homebuyers can look forward to a wide range of freebies such as stamp duty and GST waivers and schemes that include the property swap option. Developers can hope to see sales recover after a lull of six months on the back of pent up demand.

The upcoming season may also turn out to be a great buying opportunity for fence-sitters scouting for deals and NRIs. Interest rates have fallen and there is a massive supply of affordable and mid-income housing across top cities.

Homebuyers today prefer going in for a ready-to-move-in property and demand in this segment may be high this season. Some buyers may also be considering an upgrade with the pandemic necessitating the need for spacious and bigger homes on account of work-from-home.

Cash discounts, lower interest rates, free accessories, GST and stamp duty waivers not to mention free maintenance – builders are leaving no stone unturned to attract homebuyers this season.

“COVID-19 has accelerated the need and importance of owned homes for a generation that was tilting towards renting over buying. The coming quarter will be a great buying opportunity for fence-sitters, quick-decision makers, and another customer segment that can yield returns are NRIs,” said Chaitanya Seth, partner – Business Consulting – Real estate sector, EY India.

One big shift in the strategy of customer engagement is the extensive use of digital marketing and digital engagement tools by the developers to improve the scale, outreach, and, eventually sales. As against last year, the need for bigger and safe spaces, better amenities like large open spaces, having a co-work space in the project, flexible payment plans, and festive offers are going to be the demand drivers, he said.

Homebuyers looking to buy a house this Navratri should understand that today’s market is a buyer’s market. Not only are developers offering deals and discounts, buyers are in a great position to bargain hard and gain significantly. Discounts could vary from 5 percent to even 15 percent.

Pankaj Kapoor, founder and Managing Director, Liases Foras, said builders are under pressure to sell and would have to generate cash flows through customer advances. In that respect, he feels this Diwali is not a sellers Diwali but a homebuyers’ Diwali.

So, what’s on offer this festive season?

Cash discounts are being offered on the per square feet price. For instance, on the brochure rate of Rs 4,000/sq ft, a cash discount of Rs 200 is offered. On a 1,000 sq ft apartment, this works out to Rs 2 lakh.

Freebies such as air conditioners, television sets, furniture, modular kitchens, zero maintenance and club membership, gold coins and IPhones are also being offered.

GST waiver is also being offered by developers. At present, GST is charged at five percent for residential units outside the affordable housing segment. At the time of registration, the buyer has to pay stamp duty and registration charges.

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