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Hometown options

For buyers looking at evaluating options, they should see what they can afford and then work out their options.

Driven by growing incomes and an attractive interest rate regime, the residential real estate market in the country, in big and small cities, has posted substantial growth in terms of size and value over the last few years. Given the spate of investments—both from domestic and foreign sources—this growth is only expected to strengthen in the coming years. For end-users and buyers of real estate, especially of newly built homes, the growth in values also has resulted in readjustment of budgets to a rapidly changing environment both in terms of choices, costs as well as locations.

This year is expected to post sustained growth in the residential real estate market across the country, even though there may be selective consolidation in some markets which may have become overheated for a short term. Home buying is a complex decision which pitches the demand in the context of salaries, interest rates, range and cost of choices available. Given this context of overall growth, there are a few pointers that buyers should consider while taking decisions regarding home buying.

For buyers looking at evaluating options, they should follow the norm of what they can afford and work out their options accordingly; affordability would define how well home buyers can service the mortgages that they take for buying their new houses. The firm trends that are being witnessed in the mortgage rates, makes the parameter of affordability even more pertinent. The other aspect that home buyers should evaluate is that of the track record and the brand name of the developer implementing the project.

Solid track record should be the first preference as they deliver the quality and specifications that they promise. In rapidly changing market environments, there is no perfect time to buy. If the need is for self use and driven by demand, the time to buy is as and when the need arises. The other option that end-users and investors could look at is the increasing choices that are arising in new suburbs as well as in new locations— especially in the smaller cities. In newer locations chances are that the affordability would be higher, even though the product range may not be as wide as in the more mature markets.

There is now a plethora of options that cities such as Chandigarh, Mohali, Kolkata and Kochi are offering. The new locations are not only from an investment point of view but in many cases, there are instances of professionals moving out of metros back to their hometowns solely because the companies they work for have now expanded into hometowns.

There is now a plethora of options that cities such as Chandigarh, Mohali, Kolkata and Kochi are offering. The new locations are not only from an investment point of view but in many cases, there are instances of professionals moving out of metros back to their hometowns solely because the companies they work for have now expanded into hometowns.

(By Sanjay Chandra, Managing Director, Unitech)