Young Creative Services - India Property Insider - Sept 2015

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DESTINATIONS: God’s own country, Kerala,

offers a range of attractive options for NRI home buyers




LUXURY HOUSING: World-class lifestyles rise to new heights in India’s superpremium properties


SECOND HOMES: Add to your wealth by investing in a second home in India


MUMBAI MARKET: As speculative stories abound, Sandeep Sadh explains the dynamics behind current trends

Ten Reasons Why You Must Invest in Indian Property

A monthly publication exclusively for NRIs on buying real estate in India A

Media Initiative


September 2015

EDITOR Menka Shivdasani EDITORIAL The Source CONTRIBUTORS Archana Sinha Shilpa Vyas Raina Assainar



or most Indians in the United Arab Emirates, July and August are very special times; this is when they reinforce their connections back home, visiting their families during the vacations and often, building on their assets by investing in Indian property. This August, however, was particularly heartwarming. Indians in the UAE had the opportunity to connect with Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he visited Dubai and Masdar to highlight India's attractiveness as an invesment destination. The partnership between the countries has already taken shape in the form of UAE-India Infrastructure Investment Fund, with the aim of reaching a target of USD 75 billion. India Property Insider has always believed that investing in India is a very worthwhile proposition, not only at the government level, but also in the personal sphere. For a non-resident Indian, real estate is a major investment avenue; it makes sense in terms of


monetary gains over the long term, and strengthens the emotional bonds back home, in addition to providing a safe haven for the post-retirement years. With the real estate market gaining maturity in India, such investments have become even more relevant for NRI home buyers. Two decades ago it was a seller's market and you took what the builder was willing to give you. Today, thanks to the wisdom gained from two business cycles in the post-liberalisation era, developers have recognised that they must give customers what they want — a world-class product in an honest and efficient marketplace. The Indian real estate sector is gaining transparency, and will continue to do so. The Prime Minister's vision for India is backed by a strong will to see India transformed, and while there may be some hiccups on the way, there is no doubt the country is well on its way towards this metamorphosis. The sooner you invest in a changing India, the greater your gains will be. Take a long-term view and invest now.

PUBLISHER Wilfred Fernandes MEDIA DIRECTOR Anup Kotekar ADVERTISING Jitendra Boricha - Business Head Richard Mendes - Chief Manager DESIGN & INNOVATION Dallas Fernandes - Creative Head Sachin Rane - Art Director DESIGN & LAYOUT Shilpa Dinesh PRINTING & DISTRIBUTION PARTNER GN Media, UAE.

Printed and published by Wilfred Fernandes on behalf of Yo Sports Management Pvt. Ltd. Published at Young Media from 506, A-wing, Western Edge II, Western Express Highway, Borivali (East), Mumbai 400 066 and Printed at Al Nisr Publishing Press, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, UAE. Editor Menka Shivdasani India Property Insider takes no responsibility for unsolicited photographs or material. All photographs, unless otherwise indicated are used for illustrative purpose only. Views and opinions expressed in the articles are of the Authors/subjects and do not necessarily reflect those of the Editors or Publishers. While the editors do their utmost to verify information published, they do not accept responsibility for its absolute accuracy in matters which may be sub judice. The information on products and projects and their offers is being provided for the reference of readers. However, readers are cautioned to make inquiries and take their decisions on purchase or before investing after consulting experts. India Property Insider holds no responsibility for any decision taken by the readers on the basis of information provided herein. Subject to Mumbai jurisdiction only.

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Inside Insider 06





IPI VIEW: 10 REASONS TO INVEST IN INDIA From a wide-ranging reform agenda to growing options for home buyers, there are many reasons why India is an attractive destination for non-resident Indians looking for a home, says Menka Shivdasani


DESTINATIONS: LIVE IN GOD’S OWN COUNTRY With its beaches, backwaters, paddy f ields, tea plantations and forests, Kerala has always been an attractive tourist destination. Investing in property here is a wise decision as well, as many NRIs are discovering, says Raina Assainar


INSIDER INTERVIEW: 'STAY CONNECTED WITH YOUR ROOTS' Ashok Mohanani, Chairman and Managing Director of EKTA world Pvt. Ltd, believes that with the economy growing, now is the ideal time for NRIs to invest in India LUXURY HOUSING: A PIE OF THE SKY Luxury housing has emerged to be a vibrant and fast growing segment of the real estate market in India thanks to the growing aspirations of both domestic and NRI buyers, says Shilpa Vyas



September 2015

INVESTMENT OPTIONS: BUY A SECOND HOME IN INDIA AND ADD TO YOUR WEALTH Property is one asset class that has remained solid and growing in India despite the fluctuating economic scenario. So even if you own a property here you can buy another one to add to your asset class, says Archana Sinha


MUMBAI MARKET: ARE WE REALLY HEADING FOR A CRASH? It is important to ascertain the reasons behind the current realty trends in Mumbai and not give in to the speculative stories about the market crashing which are rife in the city, says Sandeep Sadh


TRENDS WATCH: MOVING TOWARDS MATURITY A rapidly changing real estate sector is seeing greater professionalism and transparency as it seeks to pull itself out of difficult times


HOUSING FINANCE: CHOOSE WISELY A housing f inance company that can hand-hold the customer right through the home buying process is of utmost importance, says Renu Sud Karnad


PROJECTS ON OFFER Some options around the country


PROPERT Y PRICES Average Residential Apartment Rates



We'd Like to Hear From You!

India Property Insider would be happy to hear from readers. Write in to with your comments, suggestions, experience of buying property in India and anything else that you would like to share. Send in your responses today! | A




September 2015


Pic courtesy: Oberoi Realty

From a wide-ranging reform agenda to growing options for home buyers, there are many reasons why India is an attractive destination for non-resident Indians looking for a home


When Prime Minister Narendra Modi swept the Indian election with a massive majority, everyone expected him to wave a magic wand and set right all the country's ills. In a democracy as vast and complex as India's, this hasn't always proved to be the case, but there is no doubt that the new government has set its sights on reform across the economy, announcing major new initiatives and fast-tracking them; even Moody’s Investors Service, when it expressed some disappointment recently over India's pace of reform, observed that "the recent policy changes are slowly taking effect", adding that policies including the ‘Make in India’ campaign, increased foreign direct investment limits in rail infrastructure, defence and insurance, and bills related to mining "will all improve India’s growth outlook”. From streamlined tax regimes to boosting infrastructure and cutting through red tape, Mr. Modi's grasp of the changes that India needs is clear. He also isn't one to take setbacks lightly, so even if the Opposition did manage a Parliament washout over 6

key bills last month, Modi is sure to bounce back. He's here for the long term and is known to be persistent.


At 7.5 per cent, India is believed to have the fastest expanding large economy in the world. The World Bank, in an April 28, 2015 update on the country has observed that "India’s government has announced an ambitious development agenda supported by a three-pronged strategy – promoting fast and durable economic growth, especially in manufacturing, together with a stable macro-economic environment; involving states as active development partners; and improving the delivery of social benefits and extending social safety to the elderly and the underprivileged." A recent UNIDOW FIS Intelligence and Research report also maintains a stable outlook on the overall economic prospects of India. The Baseline Profitability Index (BPI) 2015, which ranks countries by their overall attractiveness as targets for

a generic foreign investment, ranks India at the top among 110 countries. “Where exactly should they [investors] put their money? The Baseline Profitability Index (BPI) is back for its third year with some answers, and Narendra Modi’s India is the place to start,” wrote Daniel Altman, creator of the index.


If infrastructure is the backbone of a growing economy, then Modi's government is on the right track. USD 1,000 billion investments for the infrastructure sector have been projected in the 12th five year plan (2012-17). In practically every city, infrastructure is getting a major boost with projects for railways, power, ports, bridges, dams, roads and much more. A USD 3.8 billion outlay is planned for highways, with 100,000 kms of national highway expected by the end of 2017. This June, Udhampur in Jammu & Kashmir witnessed | A


September 2015

the opening of India's longest road tunnel that will cut the Jammu to Srinagar distance by 30 kilometres. In Bihar, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has announced the state will get roads worth ` 50,000 crore. There's lots more happening in the infrastructure space around the country.


Retrofitting, redevelopment and greenfield developments are expected to make the ambitious programme of 100 smart cities a reality. In the greenfield areas, where new cities will be developed, plans are afoot for 80 per cent energy-efficient green buildings and 15 per cent of homes in the affordable category. In July 2015, Stage-1 of the ‘India Smart Cities Challenge' competition got underway, with 100 cities competing in the first round for funding from the Ministry of Urban Development. The United States is also an enthusiastic partner; on June 23, 2015, the US Ambassador Richard R. Verma said: "The fact is India will be one of the world’s leaders in the growth of its cities in the coming years – at a scale and pace that few have witnessed before. This is why the Prime Minister’s Smart Cities initiative is so important – so India’s urban centers can be safer, cleaner, more efficient, digitized, with modern and reliable services for those who live there." He added that the US is helping to develop three cities in particular: Vishakapatnam, Ajmer and Allahabad. The cabinet has also set aside ` 50,000 crore for the rejuvenation of 500 cities under the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT).


With most investors complaining bitterly about red tape in India, Prime Minister Modi has prioritised ease of doing business, announcing new de-licensing and deregulation measures to reduce complexity, and significantly increase speed and transparency. Dedicated teams will guide and assist first-time investors, from time of arrival, and there is focused targeting of companies across sectors. The process of applying for an Industrial License and Industrial Entrepreneur Memorandum has been made online on a 24x7 basis through the eBiz portal. The Delhi-Mumbai Industrial Corridor (DMIC), featured in KPMG’s ‘100 Most Innovative Global Projects’ is well underway, with the Indian government developing a global manufacturing and investment destination utilising the 1,483 km-long, high-capacity western Dedicated Railway Freight Corridor (DFC) as the backbone to create 24 sustainable manufacturing cities.


The Government of India Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Annual Report 2014-2015, says: "With a view to attracting higher levels of FDI, Government has put in place a liberal policy on FDI, under which FDI up to 100 per cent is permitted under the automatic route, in most sectors/ activities. Significant changes have been made in the FDI policy regime in recent times, to ensure that India remains

an increasingly attractive investment destination." As the government seeks to boost infrastructure, a Press Note dated August 26, 2014 has allowed 100 per cent private and FDI investment under the automatic route in rail infrastructure in construction, operation and maintenance of suburban corridor projects through public-private partnership, and high-speed train projects, among other things. "During the calendar year 2014 (i.e. during January-December, 2014), FDI equity inflows of US $28.78 billion have been received," the report states. "This represents increase of 31 per cent over the FDI equity inflows of US $22.04 billion received during the corresponding period ( January-December-2013) of the previous calendar year (2013)."


From studio apartments to villas; from homes in redeveloped projects in the heart of traditional business districts to new constructions in emerging destinations; from affordable housing to super-luxury branded residences; from homes that encourage youthful lifestyles through a range of sporting and amenities to havens designed especially for the comfort of senior citizens… India today offers all this and more. There is something to suit every need and budget in India, whether you are looking for a home in a Tier-1 city or in a smaller town. India's push towards urbanisation only means that the options are growing.


QUICK FACTS • From a reform agenda encompassing the nation to greater transparency in real estate, there are many reasons to believe that the India growth story is a strong one. • There may be troubles in the short term, but real estate investment is a long-term game, so invest early for better returns.


E-registration, online transactions, a move towards full cheque payments, a tougher regulation bill in the offing for developers, the entry of large corporates into the real estate sector, the slow but steady move towards Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)… all these factors have contributed greatly to increased transparency and professionalism in the real estate sector. Over the last few years, self-regulation has become a key business practice for developers. In 2011, CREDAI, the country's apex real estate body, had launched Mission Transparency, urging the government towards single-window clearance to minimise corruption in the permissions process, and impressing upon their member developers that they had to sign a code of conduct, making them accountable towards customers and other stake-holders. With the real estate regulation bill imminent, this has become an urgent consideration for developers.

What's a great lifestyle if it doesn't include working in a cutting-edge office environment? With information technology being a key driver, youthful office spaces have become the norm, complete with lively and efficient designs, fitness and recreational facilities and other factors that boost productivity and inject fun into long working days. India's improved sentiment and economy has also led to an increased demand for corporate office spaces. More than eight million sq ft of commercial office space has been taken up across the seven leading cities, according to CBRE's India Office Market View (Q2 2015), with nearly 35 per cent of this total absorption being generated in Bengaluru.



If you left India two decades ago to build a new life in the United Arab Emirates, you may have carried back an impression of a sleepy, backward country where telephones were hard to get and often didn't work, where clubs were places that only the elite could access, where the luxury of private transport involved just two options in cars, a Fiat and an Ambassador. Well, it's all changed. India now offers global lifestyles in every nook and corner; retail expansion through mega malls has brought the world's best brands to the country; the trend towards townships has ensured that clubhouses with swimming pools are de rigueur in the most modest of residential spaces; home buyers can choose between glitzy metropolitan investment options or an ever-expanding canvas of vacation homes nestled amidst the greenery—and sometimes even projects that offer you a smart combination of both. If you decide to return to India in your silver years, you will find a transformed country welcoming you back home with open arms, offering you the lifestyle that you've been accustomed to while living in the UAE. Prime Minister Modi had it right. India is an attractive destination for investment, any which way you look at it. There may be troubles in the short term, but real estate investment is a long-term game. Invest now, in the early stages of a newly developing India and reap the returns in the next decade or two. MENKA SHIVDASANI Pg8: Invest in India, the Land of Opportunity



September 2015

Invest in India, the Land of Opportunity Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit enriched bonds between India and the UAE, and highlighted India's appeal as a growing economy, says MENKA SHIVDASANI

QUICK FACTS • Prime Minister Modi told business leaders in the UAE that there was an immediate potential of one trillion dollars worth of investment available in India. • As the country witnesses a transformation across the board, NRIs have many reasons to seriously consider investing in Indian real estate.


hen the Indian Prime Minister Mr Narendra Modi visited the United Arab Emirates in August 2015, there was considerable excitement. 'It was Madison Square Garden all over again', said one report, as Mr. Modi addressed a full house of more than 50,000 Indians at the Dubai Cricket Stadium, many of them chanting his name. It was the first time that any Indian prime minister had visited the UAE in 34 years, despite the fact that UAE is one of India's top three trading partners, with a population of as many as 2.6 million Indians constituting nearly 30 per cent of the population—a far cry from the 300,000 Indians who lived there when Indira Gandhi visited in 1981. Mr Modi also visited Masdar City, a planned city project in Abu Dhabi, to see first-hand how cities can rely on solar energy and other renewable energy sources. He told business leaders at a roundtable meeting there that there was an immediate potential of one trillion dollars worth of investment available in India. Among the sectors he mentioned which had huge investment potential were 8

infrastructure, real estate and low-cost housing, renewable energy and port-led development.

schemes that he announced for them was an online portal, Madad, to address their grievances.

He pointed out that India, 'the land of opportunity', was a country of 125 crore Indians, who were not just a market, but a power. The World Bank and International Monetary Fund were in agreement that India is now the fastest growing major economy in the world, with immense possibilities of development, he observed. The Prime Minister reminded his audience that many people were describing the 21st century as Asia's century, and pointed out that if India and the UAE worked together, they could indeed make this a reality.

While it is still too soon to gauge how successful Mr Modi's trip to the UAE might be in terms of actual investments on the ground, there is no doubt that the world's perception of India has been on the upswing since he took over as prime minister on May 26, 2014. The initial euphoria over his landslide victory has begun to settle down, but even as Mr. Modi's government grapples with the realities of effecting change in the world's largest democracy, the fact is that he has acted swiftly in announcing a series of far-reaching measures. From building toilets to creating smart cities, the range of his vision is enormous, leading to heightened investor confidence.

FAR-REACHING MEASURES Mr Modi had reason to be optimistic. "The Crown Prince has planned to invest ` 4.5 lakh crore in India," he said. "If people did not have trust in you, will they even want to invest ` 10 in India?" The optimism, however, was balanced with a sharp eye on the realities that non-resident Indians (NRIs) have had to deal with while investing in India; among the

In March 2015, global property consultant Cushman & Wakefield pointed out that investments in the Indian real estate sector in the previous year jumped more than twofold to over $5 billion, helping the country figure in the list of world's top 20 property destinations. "The Indian | A


September 2015

real estate investment scenario saw a high point in 2014 reaching highest investment levels in the last five years," said their report International Investment Atlas 2015. Ravi Ahuja, Executive Director, Cushman & Wakefield says: "Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UAE has been immensely successful in bolstering economic ties between both the countries. UAE’s agreement to develop a dedicated infrastructure fund would help in giving a much-required boost to India’s infrastructure sector. The investments from UAE could primarily take place in infrastructure-building projects like industrial corridors and knowledge parks in India. Infusion of funds would not only facilitate faster implementation of projects, but may also lead to execution of fresh projects. Moreover, as the Government’s ‘Housing For All’ and ‘Smart City’ initiatives gain prominence, there could be some investments that might be routed to develop such projects in a more efficient manner.” In June 2015, JLL India brought out what they referred to as 'a Twelve Month Realty Report Card of the NDA Government' under the title Rebooting Indian Real Estate. "Going by the number of initiatives and reforms implemented over the past year, Mr. Modi has definitely transformed the image of India from being a slow moving economy to one which is agile in terms of policymaking," the report said. "This has put to rest the perception that the world’s largest democracy will face more hurdles than economic growth, as it attempts to capitalise on its much vaunted demographic dividend. The world we now know is flush with liquidity, as low interest rates in developed and volatile markets find limited interest globally. With the awareness of this inherent advantage, the international visits of Mr. Modi focused primarily on bringing this cheap liquidity into India, where projects are stuck either for want of funds or lack of political will. The opening up of effective communication through various channels was also another way to bridge the gap between demand and supply".

Most leading developers and other industry experts who participated in a recent Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) real estate conclave thought along the same lines, expressing the view that the country was moving in the right direction. In August, the CII ASCON Industry Survey for the April – June FY16 quarter revealed a reversal from the earlier trend of slowing growth, with indications of green

"UAE is a valued partner and the extent of our ties indicate the vibrant relations India and UAE enjoy— India is UAE’s second largest trading partner and UAE is India’s third largest trade partner. There are over 2.5 million Indians who have made UAE their home. They have contributed immensely to the progress of UAE and also given back to India at every occasion… During my visit, I seek to enhance cooperation in energy, trade and will talk to investors on why India is an attractive destination to invest." Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the eve of his visit to the UAE

shoots of recovery taking shape in the economy, albeit slowly. Commenting on the performance of sectoral growth trends, Dr. Naushad Forbes, Chairman, CII Associations’ Council (ASCON) and President Designate, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), said, “The recent trend of slow but continuous progress in industrial growth is noteworthy. What is especially significant is that there are fewer sectors anticipating negative growth and there has been a significant and perceptible positive movement in percentage points recorded by many of the sectors which were in moderate and negative growth category a year ago.” A May 19 CRISIL report 'Modified Expectations’ on the occasion of the Narendra Modi-led government completing one year in office also conceded that the government "is putting in place building blocks that will improve India’s crucial potential-growth rate".

REAPING RETURNS So what is it that investors look for when they put in large sums of money in the hope of reaping returns in the future? Will initiatives like the Swachh Bharat cleanliness drive and Smart Cities programme make a difference? Is Narendra Modi living up to the promises he made when he first came in as Prime Minister and promised acche din? Among the key factors that NRIs consider when investing in a property are stability, better infrastructure, and a strong future outlook. Cushman & Wakefield's International Investment Atlas 2015 believes that the key attractions in India are all these and more; in the words of the report, they include significant economic potential over the longer term; the Central government is focused on pushing through much needed policy reforms; there is greater availability of finance


Pic courtesy: MMRDA

JLL notes in the report that such mechanisms have helped Mr. Modi achieve certain short-term goals - prices have stabilised, obsolete institutions are being reorganised and there is an increased focus on better governance. Also, several major announcements have been made that have not only excited domestic markets, but have also garnered interest from across the globe. The report remarks while it is important to realise that expectations are high and solutions take time, there is certainly overall direction and positive intent. "In this respect, we believe the Modi government is more or less moving in the right direction as far as conventional goals are concerned," says JLL's report card. As Raghuram Rajan, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor, who is quoted in the JLL report has said: “In the minds of the people, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s image was that of Ronald Reagan on a white horse coming to slay anti-market forces and such comparison was probably not appropriate.”



and growing sophistication in capital markets; favourable demographics and attractive investment opportunities in multiple locations, with high yields. Ashwinder Raj Singh, CEO - Residential Services, JLL India is of the view that while investments in India did not offer good returns for a protracted period, the resurgence of the Indian economy after the arrival of a stable government intent on boosting business in the country has caused a change. "Today, the Indian realty market is once again a prime focus area for NRI investors," he says, adding that the Indian realty sector as a whole – namely, across the residential, retail, hospitality and commercial verticals - is slated to grow at 30 per cent over the next decade, attaining a market size of around USD 180 billion by 2020.

"Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the UAE has been immensely successful in bolstering economic ties between both the countries. " Ravi Ahuja Executive Director, Cushman & Wakefield

"However, the investment opportunity lies less in the Indian real estate sector’s speed of growth than in its overall dynamism," he remarks. "As such, it has been time and again vouchsafed that long-term investments into Indian realty pay off very well indeed as long as sound investment decisions have been taken." Speaking of the advantages that NRIs have, he points out that UAE-based NRIs (by far the largest contingent) "earn in Gulf currencies that have traded strongly against the Indian National Rupee. This factor off-sets a part of the house cost already. However, the rupee is bound to strengthen further, and the advantageous difference between the currencies will reduce as the Indian economy grows under a stable government at the centre." Any which way you look at it, Narendra Modi's promise of India as an attractive investment destination seems to be rooted in reality. There are speed-breakers in the Indian economy, of course, as the new government sets out to meet all the ambitious tasks that it has laid out. Experts agree, however, that the country is moving in the right direction. If Mr Modi's government manages to achieve even half of what it is striving towards today, India will be a very different country a decade from now. Invest early and get a good deal while you can. 10

September 2015

A Vision for Urbanisation In June 2015, the Prime Minister unveiled three big-ticket urban renewal projects – the ` 98,000 crore Smart City, Housing for All and Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT). Here are some reactions.

“Recent initiatives by the Central Government – Smart Cities, AMRUT, and Housing for all – are welcome steps towards driving economic growth and improving quality of life in urban India. The strong focus on urban infrastructure reflects the Government’s positive intent wherein rapid urbanisation is seen as an opportunity instead of a threat to development. While AMRUT focuses on basic services such as water supply, sewerage, transportation, Smart Cities aim at using technology for better control, transparency and accountability in the delivery of basic infrastructure. The massive interest witnessed from developed nations such as Japan, US, Singapore and France in partnering with India for these missions presents a great opportunity for knowledge transfer and implementation of global best practices. These initiatives therefore, augur well for the India growth story and make it an ideal investment destination. In line with this, Brigade Group, in partnership with a Japanese technology company, has taken up the initiative to develop Bangalore’s first Smart Township called ‘Brigade Orchards,’ a 130-acre integrated enclave which is going to be a model township for how cities will be designed in future.”

Amar Mysore

VP- BCV Developers Pvt Ltd A Joint venture between Brigade Group, Classic and Valmark "The launch of three major urban development initiatives will breathe new life into the infrastructure development of cities and open up a lot of opportunities for the real estate sector. It is forecasted that these initiatives will lay the founding ground for India to become a superpower by the year 2030. These people-centric initiatives will give citizens of modern India the opportunity to contribute to the formulation of development visions of cities. India already has the strong fundamentals and high ratio of young population who can deliver. Policies such as these will enhance the revival of industrial production in the country. Stressing on skill development these programmes will essentially stimulate economic activities. India has already found a spot in the top four fastest growing economies. Many NRIs are interested in investing in the Indian real estate market due to the emotional connect to their home land. The initiatives introduced by the PM will introduce a new momentum to the property trends in the country. The longterm benefits of real estate investment will attract NRI investors. In the past most of the NRI investments were in the residential real estate sector but in recent times they have opened up investment in other sectors of real estate as well. This year is an opportunistic time for NRIs to be involved in the real estate market, since it is offering great investment options in the form of 'smart cities'. The grand plans to develop 100 smart cities with the latest technological innovations will offer impressive returns in the long run. Smart city development will eventually turn out to be the big ticket towards money making opportunity for real estate projects.

Sushil Mantri

Chairman and Managing Director (CMD), Mantri Developers Private Limited. The launch of the Smart City programme comes at a time when the government, private sector and citizens alike are looking at balanced growth, with higher standards of living, created in a resource efficient manner. Such ambitious projects need innovative implementation solutions and adequate capacity at the city administration level. This is a positive step towards building a sustainable and inclusive urbanisation story for India. Defining the right Key Performance Indicators and associated techno-legal reforms will need lot of deliberation. Public-Private Participation (PPP) will be key to implement smart cities. Getting multiple agencies to co-ordiante and move towards a common city vision will be prerequisite to a smart city. The whole agenda of this government around Smart Cities, Make in India, Skill India and Digital India will help create the Future India.

Neel Ratan

Leader - Government and Public Sector, PwC India | A



September 2015

L i ve i n G o d ’s O w n C o u n t r y

Pic courtesy: Skyline Group

With its beaches, backwaters, paddy fields, tea plantations and forests, Kerala has always been an attractive tourist destination. Investing in property here is a wise decision as well, as many NRIs are discovering, says RAINA ASSAINAR


erala—God’s own country, known for its beauty, green paddy fields and delicious Malayali cuisine— also holds much promise for every property investor. Luxury apartments here are not just equipped with the best amenities in the market, but are also available at an attractive price range. The infrastructural development taking place in the major cities of Kerala is also bound to change the face of the state, and this, in turn will impact property prices. Kochi, Ernakulam, Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur and Kozhikode are the most happening cities in terms of property with Kochi and Ernakulam topping the list. One of India’s biggest shopping malls, Lulu Shopping Mall, is located at Edappally in Kochi.

RETURNING HOME TO KERALA In Kerala, it is common to find at least one person from a family to be working in the Middle East; for this reason, investing in a property back home becomes essential for them. “At the end of the day, every person in the Middle East wants to return home during the retirement phase," 12

says Abjo Joy, President, Kerala Realtors Association. "Indians in the Middle East cannot buy a property there so they prefer to invest in their home land. Nowadays, it is seen that the investment is done mainly in the cities of Kerala where infrastructure, schools, hospitals and other facilities are better. This secures the future of the coming generation.” Abjo Joy, who is also a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), points out that Kochi is the most expensive when it comes to property investment, as prices there can go up to ` 10,000 per sq. ft. “While looking for investment, people seek amenities, 24-hour security, back-up generator and lift. Then comes the club house and swimming pool,” Mr Joy explains. He adds that there is a small segment of nonKeralites as well who invest in Kerala due to the quality of buildings and the healthy lifestyle that permeates the state. Kerala is also one of the best destinations in the country for a vacation. Be it beaches, backwaters, paddy fields, tea plantations, forest safari or waterfalls… you have it all in this little state. Along with being a tourist attraction, it has the

highest literacy rate in India. In terms of education and health, it is developed at par with the other metro cities in the country. The growth of marine, IT, textile and agricultural industries in Kerala has led to the growth of the construction industry as well. Till a few decades ago, people in Kerala preferred only independent houses. With the increasing price of land and the construction cost, people have now shifted their preference towards apartments, which are relatively cheaper and easier to maintain. Being a small state defined by its waterfront, Kerala faces several challenges when it comes to land development. Mr. S. N. Raghuchandran Nair, Vice-President of CREDAI, Kerala, points out that of the entire land in the state, only 30 per cent land is available for development. Mr Nair adds: “Kerala has 38,834 sq km area which is just 1.19 per cent of the whole of India. With 3.34 crore population, the density becomes 860 people per sq km, while the national density of the population is 315 people per sq km.” He further explains that there is a 590-kilometre coastline in Kerala, | A


September 2015

which comes under the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ), which leads to several restrictions on property development. “One can construct only 500 metres away from the coastline as per the CRZ rules, due to which around 295 sq km of property is lost. The same thing happens around rivers wherein construction takes place beyond 10 metres, due to which we lose out on around 56.32 sq km area. Around 97.5 sq km area is lost around the backwaters as construction can be done beyond 50 m only. So, in all, around 450 sq km of area is lost while abiding by CRZ rules, says Mr. Nair.

High-speed Rail Corridor from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasargod

He adds that a major part of the remaining land is occupied by forest, wet land, mangroves, railway line, tree crops, airports and paddy fields. “So at this rate only around 30 per cent of the total land becomes available for development, construction and other infrastructural needs. Due to this lack of land availability, land prices in Kerala have been touching the sky, making it difficult to buy land and construct a house on it. Hence, people have now shifted their preference towards flats, which come at almost half the price of a villa.”

All these infrastructure developments will lead to greater connectivity, and with job opportunities slated to rise, demand for property is expected to go up in Kerala. Those

INFRASTRUCTURE GROWTH Apart from limited land availability, the other factor that adds value to property is the infrastructure development happening in the state. The projects include: Kochi Metro The Kochi Metro will offer the first Metro connectivity in Kerala, thus making travel in the city hassle-free. While the work is still in progress, the aim is to complete the 13-km AluvaPalarivattom stretch by December 2015, and the remaining 12km Palarivattom-Pettah stretch by March 2016.

This is the dream project of the government that will reduce travel time from Thiruvananthapuram to Kasargodu to three hours or less, but as of now it has funding hurdles. The Kerala government has appealed to non-resident Indian investors in the United Arab Emirates to participate in the multimillion dollar High Speed Railway Corridor project. If it becomes a reality, it will make all the difference to Kerala.

QUICK FACTS • Kochi, Ernakulam, Thiruvananthapuram, Thrissur and Kozhikode are among the most 'happening' cities in Kerala. • Infrastructure development is also changing the face of the state. • With limited land availability, the value of property is sure to appreciate, according to experts.

who invest early can expect good appreciation. “The real estate prices within Kochi city have increased considerably over the last few years. Infrastructure improvements like Kochi metro as well as the plan for Amballoor Electronics park near Poothotta and other developments has created lots of investor interest in real estate, especially in the suburbs of Kochi, ” says Arun Antony, Managing Partner of Transform Property Consulting, Kochi.

PROJECTS TO LOOK FOR Among the upcoming projects in Kerala, properties in and around Kochi that includes places like Aluva, Ernakulam, Edapally and Kakanad are high in demand. “As of now, most of the development is happening in Kochi and hence this is most in demand," says Dr. Najeeb Zackeria, Managing Director, Abad Builders. "Apart from it having the best schools and hospitals, the upcoming metro line is one of the major reasons for the attraction towards Kochi property. The metro line from Aluva to Tripunithara is now the most awaited project, besides the information technology (IT) projects in Kakanad. Dr. Zackeria observes that while NRIs often prefer to own a home in their own birthplace in Kerala, they are also drawn to investments in Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode for the benefit of future generations. “Investing in a city that is developed and has good facilities along with job opportunities is what people do these days,” he observes. Besides infrastructural development, factors like land value and price of the raw materials also makes a huge difference in the price of a property. “With Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cutting down on fixed deposit (FD) benefits, NRIs now prefer

SmartCity Kochi SmartCity Kochi is a 3000-crore IT township project under construction in Kochi, which is expected to generate 90,000 jobs after its completion. The main investors of the project are Government of Kerala (16 per cent share) and TECOM Investments (84 per cent share), a subsidiary of Dubai Holding. The construction of phase one is nearing completion, after which the work on phase two will begin. Vizhinjam International Deep Water Seaport

Pic courtesy: Tata Realty

The Government of Kerala, as part of its various programmes, has identified the development of Vizhinjam International Deep Water Multipurpose Seaport. A separate company, Vizhinjam International Seaport Limited (VISL), has been formed and will act as the implementing agency for development of the greenfield port at Vizhinjam in Thiruvananthapuram district, Kerala. The project is at the initial stages and the government of Kerala has decided to award the contract for the construction of this multi-crore project to Adani Ports, owned by Gujaratbased Gautam Adani.



September 2015

to put their hard-earned money in property and rent it out or keep it to re-sell after a few years,” he explains. The flats offered by Abad Builders start from ` 40 lakh for a 2BHK while villas start from ` 1.5 crore. The Orchard County luxury villa project at Irumpanam in Ernakulam, Royal Gardens at Kottayam, Silver Dew at Kalamassery in Ernakulam, Spring field in Aluva and Celebration Towers at Edapally are some of the projects to look for by Abad Builders.

Gilbert George, Assistant Manager Sales, Tata Realty, describes the other features that people look for while buying property in this state. “Kerala, being a land of beaches and back waters, waterfront properties are among the most sought after, especially in Kochi,” he observes. According to him, the amenities that most NRIs prefer are outdoor playing areas, swimming pools, landscaped gardens and party halls. “Infrastructural development, commencement of the muchawaited Kochi Metro, the SmartCity initiative and opening up of various job avenues in the city are steadily contributing to the property market. The upcoming development in the city assures good returns for any investor with a long-term vision,” he opines. Tritvam at Kochi is one of the premium projects by Tata Realty, which starts from ` 2.5 crore and offers an elevated open podium with landscape gardens, swimming pools, tennis court, half basket ball court, club house with indoor facilities like squash court, gym, yoga, banquet hall and guest suites. While the apartment culture is coming in to a state that was once known for independent homes, premium villas do form part of the projects in the case of most builders. Most buyers, however, opt for apartments, mainly because of the cost and the location; villa projects are often at the outskirts of the city. Kent Construction Group has four premium projects in and around Kochi in both apartments and villas. Kent Nalukettu Palm Villas is one of the premium villa projects, located at Athani Junction, Kakkanad, barely two km. from Infopark and the upcoming Smart City. This comprises a gated community with 110 high-end independent villas in traditional architecture with ultra-modern finishes, and a starting range of ` 7,000 per sq ft. Kent Oakville, located at Vazhakala en route to Kakkanad, is just two km. from Palarivattom Bypass. A mixture of low-rise apartment complexes and villas with contemporary design and finishes is the main attraction of this project that starts from ` 7000 per sq. ft. Kent Baywatch at Edakochi, just three km. from Aroor Bypass right on the vibrant shores of Vembanad backwaters, is a ground plus nine-storeyed apartment complex under construction based on a hotel apartment 14

Pic courtesy: Abad Builders

Home buyers in Kerala also seek a range of amenities and one common factor that they find in all projects is rainwater harvesting, which is mandatory as per state regulations—no project gets approval without this being factored in the plans. Most residents of Kerala prefer to grow fresh vegetables in their own gardens and hence most builders provide huge balconies to facilitate gardening within the apartments.

Endura at Sreekaryam junction has two blocks with eight and 15 floors each, and is available at ` 4750 per sq ft.

"With Reserve Bank of India (RBI) cutting down on fixed deposit (FD) benefits, NRIs now prefer to put their hard-earned money in property and rent it out or keep it to re-sell after a few years.” Dr. Najeeb Zackeria, Managing Director, Abad Builders

concept, ideal for investment purposes with a self-generating income proposal starting at ` 5,000 per sq. ft. Meanwhile, Kent Mahal, a ready-to- occupy apartment complex adjacent to the Infopark and the upcoming SmartCity consisting of six independent towers with apartments in the 1, 2 and 3BHK categories with a host of amenities and facilities, is available from ` 3,700 per sqft for a 1BHK. Moving towards the south, there is SI Properties offering premium projects at Thiruvananthapuram. Verna by SI Properties is located at MC Road between Paruthippara and Nalanchira, which is a ground plus 11 floor apartment complex that is available at ` 5,250 per sq. ft. Tana, located at Kuravankonam in Thiruvananthapuram, has ground plus 10 floor apartments and is available at the same price. Meanwhile

The biggest advantage of investing in an apartment is that one gets a proper house with all necessary amenities at the right location at a price that is much less than that of a villa in the same location, opines Anil Chacko, Sr Sales Manager from Skyline Group. “Not just the local residents of Kerala, but also NRIs prefer flats," he says. "But that doesn’t mean that villas are not being sold. There are also people who have lived their whole life in an apartment in the Middle East and prefer to come back home to stay in a villa.” According to Mr Chacko, not just Keralites but over the past few years, non-Keralites have also started investing in Kerala, especially those from IT and logistics sector. “When it comes to amenities, people consider a swimming pool as the bench mark; if a swimming pool is available then it goes without saying that a club house, children's park and gymnasium comes along with it. The maintenance cost here is around ` 1.50 per sq. ft. per month,” he says, adding that the scarcity of residential land in Kerala is leading to a price rise in property and this is the right time to invest in Kerala. Skyline has properties across Kerala, including places like Ernakulam, Aluva, Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Thiruvalla, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Pala, Kochi, Thrissur, Kozhikode and Kannur. Skyline Riverville at Aluva, Ranch at Tripunithara, The Legend Sky Mansions at Kaloor, Skyline 24 Carat at Elamakkara, IVY League at Kakkanad are some of their premium projects. Whether you are a Keralite, or a non-Keralite, there is no doubt that Kerala is an attractive destination for everyone who wishes to live amidst nature's beauty. After all, there is a reason that they call it 'God's Own Country'! | A


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The information in this advertisement is indicative of the kind of development that is proposed. Subject to the approval of the authorities or in the interest of continuing improvement, the developers reserve the right to change the layout, plans, specifications or features without prior notice or obligations. *Basic selling price, other charges as applicable. *Condition Apply.

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September 2015

' S t ay C on n e c t e d w i t h Yo u r R o o t s ' Ashok Mohanani, Chairman and Managing Director of EKTA world Pvt. Ltd, believes that with the economy growing, now is the ideal time for NRIs to invest in India



Chairman and MD EKTA world Pvt. Ltd

s Chairman and Managing Director of EKTA world Pvt Ltd., a real estate firm with a turnover of ` 500 crores, Mr. Ashok Mohanani has been the driving force behind the metamorphosis the organisation has seen over the last 28 years. Mr. Mohanani began his career as a real estate consultant after acquiring his Bachelor's in Commerce and a Law degree and is today recognised as one of the pioneers in the industry. EKTA world has created landmarks in Mumbai, Pune, Nashik and Virar, introducing innovative concepts such as 'Villas in the Sky'. Mr. Mohanani is also Joint Secretary on the managing committee of MCHICREDAI, an apex body of the real estate fraternity. EKTA world Pvt. Ltd. has completed flagship projects such as Lake Homes (Powai), EKTA Meadows (Kandivali E), EKTA Terraces (Kandivali W), all in Mumbai, as well as EKTA California on NIBM Rd, Pune. EKTA world currently has 14 ongoing projects across Mumbai, Virar, Pune and Nashik. These include EKTA Tripolis, Goregaon(W), with two, three and four bedroom homes and three acres of vehicular-free podium landscape and EKTA Greenville, Nashik, spread across 12 acres of lush greenscapes, with two and three bedroom homes and three and four bedroom limited edition villas. Then there is EKTA Parksville, 1.5km from Virar station in the extended western suburbs of Mumbai, spread across 13 acres, with 15-storey towers of one, two and threebedroom Classic and Platinum apartments with modular kitchens, among other facilities. Through all his successes in the real estate sector, Mr Mohanani finds time for social causes. He is associated with Lions Club International and currently holds the title of 'Senator of CSR' (Corporate Social Responsibility). Rural development and village adoption has been on the forefront 16

of his initiatives and he has adopted over six villages within the periphery of Mumbai. He has also been a founder member and trustee of Shraddha Rehabilitation Centre, set up in 1988. The Centre is a humane experiment, perhaps the only one of its kind in India, providing treatment, custodial care and rehabilitation to mentally-ill roadside destitutes and reuniting them with their lost families. His colossal passion for social service gave him the opportunity to work with the legendary Mr. Baba Amte and Dr. Prakash Amte. He is also involved with the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University in Mt. Abu, an international non– governmental organisation (NGO) in general consultative status with the Economic and Social Council of the United

QUICK FACTS • EKTA world Pvt. Ltd. has created several landmark projects in Mumbai, Pune, Nashik and Virar. • Ashok Mohanani, who heads the organisation, has introduced innovative concepts such as 'Villas in the Sky'.

Nations and in consultative status with UNICEF. The Brahma Kumaris support the UN Millennium Development Goals through a wide range of programmes promoting education; gender equality and empowerment of women; mental, physical, and spiritual health and well-being; and environmental sustainability. Mr. Mohanani actively pursues these programmes along with being on a spiritual journey. MR. MOHANANI TOOK SOME TIME OFF FROM HIS BUSY SCHEDULE TO SPEAK TO INDIA PROPERT Y INSIDER. EKTA world was established in 1987 and much has changed

in the real estate industry in India since then. Could you elaborate on some of the changes you have seen? How has a younger generation of developers contributed to these? Undoubtedly, there has been change and I must say there has been significant change in the products being delivered, quality, transparency and corporate governance; all these have worked well for the industry. Consumers today are well-read and evolved; they are globe-trotters with a penchant for lifestyle and aspirational products. With the inclusion of the next generation in the business, there has been a huge technology influx and international styles being adapted for Indian palates. Is this a good time for NRIs to look at property investments in India? Which locations should they consider and why? How does EKTA world reach out to them? Yes, I would say that 'now' is a very good time for the NRI to invest. India is a steadfast economy and NRIs have always had that affinity for having homes in their country/state and regions. The Southern region, including Chennai and Bengaluru, have been high on the wish list of buyers and in the western region, Mumbai and Pune have clearly garnered tremendous interest. If return on investment (ROI) is the aspect that the customer is looking for, then the extended eastern and western suburbs should have top-of-mind recall. The Central government has plans of creating 100 new smart cities and four of these are deemed to develop near the periphery of Mumbai. To cater to NRI audiences in the Middle East, we have a sales representative office in the plush Al Mussalla Towers and for the other sectors we have a robust floating international sales team. EKTA world has created projects with 2 BHK, 3 BHK and 4 BHK apartments. What is the general preference of NRIs, particularly those from Middle Eastern countries? Is there a market for luxury homes in India? Middle East and Dubai specifically have a lot of attraction towards projects that are in the launch stages, which allow them to maximise their return on investment with a relatively lower investment of funds. And definitely NRIs prefer luxury homes in sought-after locales. Our experience has been very positive with buyers for our Bandra-Khar-Chembur, Dadar and Goregoan high-end lavish projects. | A



September 2015

Pic courtesy: EKTA Trinity by EKTA world

"Come early 2016 we will see good times, but I do want to share with your readers that it would be unfair for customers to expect a dramatic 15 to 30 per cent reduction in rates, as is being widely communicated. The truth remains that land is non-replenishable and is a scarce resource, and with compounding taxes and increased Ready Reckoner rates there cannot be a phenomenal change in prices. " Ashok Mohanani

Realty expo and received a stupendous response.

Which infrastructure projects would have a positive impact on the real estate market, particularly in Mumbai/ Maharashtra where EKTA world operates? There have been great infrastructural developments in Mumbai in the recent past which have Vivek Mohanani contributed mightily towards Joint Managing Director the demand for real estate in the EKTA world Pvt. Ltd. neighbouring/ adjoining areas. An apt example would be Chembur with the increased connectivity of the western suburbs via the Santacruz-Chembur Link Road (SCLR) and the Freeway connectivity with south Mumbai. These have worked wonders for this hyper-local market i.e. this location is top-of-mind for consumers and investors, cascading towards higher demand and higher realty rates. Furthermore with the inclusion of the Metro and Monorail in Mumbai’s transport system, there has been a huge surge in demand for locations within these regions. The latest addition to the infrastructure is the proposed coastal road that will connect Virar and Versova, providing an alternate route to the Western Express highway. The property market in Goregaon is also on an upswing. This locality, which has the best social amenities, got an additional infrastructure boost with the civic body announcing plans to construct a flyover connecting the Link road in Goregaon West to Goregaon East. This flyover will benefit not only those residing in Goregaon, but also all the way till Borivali. Such developments in infrastructure will

have a positive impact on property values throughout the city and especially in Goregaon. I am already seeing a traction / movement in sales in the two projects; Ekta Tripolis and Ekta Bhoomi Gardens that we have in the Goregaon-Borivali belt. EKTA Group has consciously worked towards building eco-friendly projects and has ISO 9001:2000 certification. Tell us about the importance of green buildings today and why NRIs should give preference to these. Our consumers today are an educated, well travelled and evolved lot. They are more sensitised towards global causes and appreciate efforts being made towards sustained living. Similarly we too consciously work for a greener tomorrow. All our projects have eco-friendly systems such as sewage treatment plants (STPs) and rainwater harvesting, in addition to eco-friendly products such as fly ash bricks. EKTA Tripolis at Goregaon West is designed and executed as a green building and has been awarded a Platinum LEED certification. It is imperative that we are conscious of our 'today' and maintain our environment for coming generations. You recently launched the EKTA world Realty Index (EWRI). Tell us about this and what it aims to achieve. We did the EKTA world Realty Index for our 28th anniversary campaign. It was a novel concept that garnered wide appreciation from the industry and media and all our believers. We took on this concept to market/communicate our projects in an innovative way. The basic premise was to ensure that every consumer who bought with us gained with their purchase i.e. this was the apt time for their home buying. We successfully replicated this for the Dubai sector in June with the Times

What would you say about the growing professionalism in the Indian real estate sector today? There has been a colossal change in the way in which the industry operates now and back then. It's more regulated, more organised, competitive and challenging now. Corporate governance has grown manifold, the customer has become the focal point for decisions taken and it’s no longer unilateral. With private equity and opening of foreign direct investment (FDI) this scenario is only going to look up. The real estate industry has been going through some difficult times. What is your outlook on the industry? What changes do you see going forward? Yes, the industry is going through some trying times, but I must say it isn’t alarming since, like all business, realty too is cyclical in nature and in time the tide will change and look favourable. Come early 2016 we will see good times, but I do want to share with your readers that it would be unfair for customers to expect a dramatic 15 to 30 per cent reduction in rates, as is being widely communicated. The truth remains that land is non-replenishable and is a scarce resource, and with compounding taxes and increased Ready Reckoner rates there cannot be a phenomenal change in prices. Hence my humble advice—if you’re an avid investor or home seeker, now is the time. Any advice that you could offer NRIs looking to buy property in India? The time is perfect. With a growing economy, I think this is the ideal time for you to buy into a part of India, and stay connected with your roots. 17


September 2015

A Pie of the Sky

Luxury housing has emerged to be a vibrant and fast growing segment of the real estate market in India thanks to the growing aspirations of both domestic and NRI buyers, says SHILPA VYAS


ndia is one of the fastest growing real-estate markets in the world and is expected to grow to US$180 billion by year 2020. Luxury housing is emerging as one of the major segments, attracting not just domestic real estate developers but also foreign investors. The growth in the number of High Networth Individuals (HNIs), Non-Resident Indians (NRIs), changing lifestyles and consumer demographics and increasing awareness among the consumers has led to the demand for luxury and super luxury homes. This has been further fuelled by the growth in the propensity to buy / purchase, which has created a large demand for luxury homes in India. Ashwinder Raj Singh, CEO - Residential Services, JLL India says: "The number of millionaires is increasing in the entire country and Mumbai as a city is the business capital of the nation. With better lifestyle, charms of living at a worldrenowned address and future potential of the appreciation of the investment is drawing a lot of people to opt for luxury homes for themselves. India’s High Net Worth Individuals are expected to grow to almost 3,50,000 by 2018-19 and these very individuals are the ones whose 40 per cent of investment is in real estate. Catering to this client base, a lot of luxury projects are announced in Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune, NCR, especially in Gurgaon, and in Chennai. Getting foreign brand names in construction as well as luxury segments are the next big thing not only in Mumbai, but across the country."


Luxury projects today are vying with each other not just on superior specifications and design but also on the basis of the superlative living experience coming from the services and amenities they offer. Location, type of product envisaged design, concept, and amenities – all together bring in the luxury tag to a property.

LOCATION COUNTS Location is the foremost factor associated with luxury housing as a desirable address is bound to covet a superior price tag. Major developers are now cherry-picking micro markets in order to build iconic buildings comparable to international standards keeping in mind the lifestyle needs of the discerning customers who desire superlative luxury homes. Luxury real estate is witnessing growth in the entire country with Mumbai being the clear leader. Pune, Bengaluru, Delhi, Gurgaon and Chennai are the other most responsive markets for luxury housing in India today. Ahuja Towers, the flagship project of Ahuja Group in Worli, is a testament of timeless design, classic elegance and international lifestyle combined with practically efficient and sustainable real estate development. This iconic 53- storey residential tower caters to the aspirations of the new-age, globe-trotting, connoisseurs of the modern world who have experienced superior levels of services, and are willing to pay

for the best. Each wing houses exclusive 4 BHK apartments and limited edition 6 BHK duplexes for its discerning clientele. With architecture design by Palmer & Turner, Singapore and interiors by Wilson Associates, New York, residents will enjoy 13 ft high-ceiling apartments, a 270 degree sea and city view as well as a host of premium facilities like a business centre, mini theatre, wine cellar, private dining area spa and beauty salon together with other club amenities. Besides this, the building will be fully serviced and comes replete with a concierge service, valet and even a chef on demand. Gautam Ahuja, Managing Director, Ahuja Constructions says: "The branded luxury residential property market has been steadily growing not only globally but also in Mumbai. In Mumbai, there has been a trend of working with international brands, consultants and fashion houses to package in something more for the uber rich buyer. Developers are increasingly walking the extra mile to overcome boundaries typically associated with operating in the luxury market which is today governed more by a social status and lifestyle statement rather than the economic or need considerations. This is because the buyers in this category are successful entrepreneurs, business tycoons, and high net worth individuals of the corporate world whose financial appetite in not limited to or affected by the economic conditions." An aspirational lifestyle is fuelling the demand for luxury | A


September 2015

Pic courtesy(from left): Sheth Group, Lodha Group, Ahuja Group, Sobha Group

projects in the country. Ram Raheja, Director, S Raheja Realty says: "In the present times India has greater exposure to technology, which creates an aspiration to improve one’s lifestyle. In every state of our country, there exists a huge demand for the development of luxury projects. The metros and upcoming mini metros have a vast potential for a luxurious lifestyle experience. We are currently developing several luxury real estate projects in and around Mumbai. Our projects offer a very diverse range of luxury apartments, penthouses and second home villas. True luxury comes with customisation; hence we work very closely with our clients and buyers to create their ideal luxury space."

The amenities provided in luxury homes today are indeed the reason why many home buyers are attracted towards luxury housing. For township projects, the greenery in the form of landscaped gardens gives more bang for the buck,

• Luxury housing in India is expected to grow by 30 per cent between 2013 and 2016, but it is the super luxury segment which is growing even faster. • Luxury projects today are vying with each other not just on superior specifications and design but also on the basis of the superlative living experience coming from the services and amenities they offer.

Pic courtesy: Kolte Patil

The group is developing some landmark projects in Mumbai. Raheja Cascades located on the foothills of Lonavala is an exquisite array of holiday homes comprising 36 boutique villas designed in various variants of 3/4/5 BHK. Each villa has a 30 ft private waterfall that originates from the terrace and cascades along the façade, creating reflection ponds at different levels. Within each villa there is a private pool with sunken seating and wooden decks that allow one to unwind in the lap of luxury while staying connected with nature. Encouranging sustainable lifestyles, the villas generate great cross-ventilation and natural light throughout the day. Natraj located in the prime location of Khar offers a rare view for a sprawling city—a view of a park. With just one apartment per floor one can appreciate the view in indulgent solitude. 31 JVPD, situated amongst some of the most stunning vintage bungalows, is an exclusive project for JVPD. It consists of a 40 ft lobby and lounge areas equipped with all the latest technologies.


especially in a city like Mumbai where people are deprived of open spaces. For example, Oberoi Exquisite, the latest offering from Oberoi Realty in Goregaon, offers a resort living experience to the buyers. Luxury flat configurations including duplex homes starting from the 45th floor, plush amenities like double glazed windows that ensure constant natural light and minimised ambient noise and township living, the project offers a bouquet of lifestyle amenities to the buyers and has been constructed using the advanced Mivan technology. Esquire is also among their newest projects at Oberoi Garden City, Goregaon, offering spacious 3 and 4BHK apartments within an eco-system that offers a mall, a



Pic courtesy: Oberoi Realty

school, a five-star hotel and business spaces. Pointing out that they have booked over 450 apartments in the three-tower project, Reema Kundnani, Vice President, Head - Marketing, Corp. Comm. and Luxury Residential Sales, says that nonresident Indians form approximately 10 per cent of their buyers. "NRIs desire homes where the quality of life matches the global living environments that they are familiar with and at Esquire, they can expect the same," she explains.

September 2015

There is also a better understanding and appreciation for the world-class lifestyle quotient that comes promised with a luxury development from a credible developer. A spokesperson from Lodha Group says, “Just five years ago, people couldn’t imagine elaborate residential projects such as the World One and Trump Tower being delivered in India.”

PRIVATE JET SERVICE The World Towers offer a lifestyle unparalleled in scale, luxury and vision. Ensconced in a 17-acre private estate in Worli/ Upper Worli, the heart of up-scale Greater Mumbai, the project is being built with advanced construction technologies that include many industry firsts in the country. It is the first large-scale residential project in Asia to have interior design by Armani/Casa. Besides, the hospitality services that will be managed by the legendary hospitality brand, the Six Senses Resorts from Thailand, the World residents will also have two Rolls Royce sedans available on a time-sharing basis. The concierge services will be managed by ‘Quintessentially’ from the UK. The project has an exclusive access to a private fiveacre elevated landscape equipped with finest facilities – from an indoor pool and world-renowned spa, to a cricket and sports arena. At Trump Towers Mumbai, the luxury amenities include a fractional membership to a private jet service exclusively for Trump residents – the first ever in Mumbai. With its gleaming golden façade, Trump Tower Mumbai will be the signature tower at The Park at Worli, forming part of Lodha’s immensely successful 17.5-acre master-planned neighbourhood. This luxury development has been exclusively designed as a tribute to nature with seven-acres of world-class landscapes set on top of a 70 feet tall ‘hill’ at Worli, South Mumbai. Unique features of the property include organic gardens, a reflexology path and a Turkish hamam. Research reports suggest that globally branded residences command 25 per cent more premium than the non-branded residences. Having said that, connectivity is also a key factor that is becoming critical to higher appreciation of luxury projects. The Lodha spokesperson adds, “Projects that offer a higher lifestyle quotient are seeing higher appreciation at premiums if they have good connectivity from commercial hubs.” Deepak Goradia, Vice-Chairman & Managing Director, Dosti Realty says: "There is a growing demand for luxury housing across Mumbai, but areas like Wadala, Worli, Lower Parel in the city are seeing new project developments. In the suburbs, areas like Mulund, Goregaon and Thane are witness 20

project is a pre-certified Gold Rated project under IGBC and beautifully landscaped by Taib Photo Studio, Singapore." In the Delhi-NCR region, Gurgaon is shaping up as the hotbed for luxury projects. Considered as the millennium city of NCR, Gurgaon is growing steadily on the luxury curve and has created a huge scope for the luxury market. Pankaj Bansal, Director M3M India says: "We have several luxury projects in Gurgaon. Our projects are theme-based projects, every project has a unique concept behind them which makes them different from others. We have multiple luxury projects based a golf theme like St Andrews, Golf Estate and Polo Suites. Latitude celebrates sky living, M3M Marina is resplendent with scenic beauty and has recreated sea-side for sheer indulgence while M3M Merlin brings the magical charm of Singapore style in India."


"As India records the highest growth of around 22 per cent in its HNI population and will still grow, demand for luxury projects will increase. India would require 1.5 million luxury houses over the next 15 years. " Amarjit Bakshi, Founder & MD of Central Park, Gurgaon.

to luxury housing developments on a large scale. The buyers are optimistic and don’t mind paying that extra bit in order to get maximum benefits from luxury projects. For example, our project Dosti Ambrosia is a 36-storey tower dominating the skyline of Wadala. The project is spread across 20 acres of natural beauty, a garden, and an immaculate world of greenery that transports you into a totally stress-free world that leaves you completely rejuvenated. Dosti Vidisha and Dosti Vasudha the two latest additions to Dosti Vihar in Thane, taking the township to the next level of luxury. The most striking feature of these projects is that both towers offer spectacular views of the lush gardens surrounding them. A breath of fresh air in the city of Thane may be a luxury for others, but for those living in Dosti Vidisha and Dosti Vasudha, the experience comes on a platter. Comfortably nestled between the Yeoor hills and the limpid blue water of the Ulhas river, Dosti Imperia is a project on Ghodbunder Road that is blessed with every conceivable luxury. The

Luxury homes are a lifestyle statement and buyers look for a perfect reflection of their taste and lifestyle in their abode, believes Amarjit Bakshi, Founder & MD of Central Park in Gurgaon. He says: "Luxury is not about enhanced specifications with regards to interiors such as flooring, marble and accessories but it is about a luxury lifestyle and space that a person lives in. It’s basically the social environment of like-minded people, social bracket and intellectual bandwidth that one wants to inhabit. As India records the highest growth of around 22 per cent in its HNI population and will still grow, demand for luxury projects will increase. India would require 1.5 million luxury houses over the next 15 years. The trends in demand are branded residences, smart townships, luxury villas and service apartments." The group's current project at Sohna Road, Central Park II Resorts, is spread over 50-acres consisting of luxury condominiums, townhouses and triplex penthouses. The architecture is designed in such a way that condominiums have 20-acres of beautiful garden in the centre of the development, which is free of vehicular movement. A state-of-the-art tunnel is designed at the entrance which is connected to each tower, which boasts of five-star lobbies, thereby the development is free of noise or air pollution on ground surface. We have four clubs in the township, one of which is 50,000 sqft, operating to take care of all the rejuvenation needs of the residents. The other features include horse riding track, gazebos, theatre room, wi-fi connecitivity, spa, bowling alley, and a host of sports amenities. Every city has multiple pockets where there is a high demand for luxury real estate. For example, a city like Pune has existing micro-markets for luxury in Koregaon Park, Boat Club Road, Kalyani Nagar and emerging micro-markets in localities of Pimple-Nilakh and Viman Nagar. 24K by Kolte Patil is a luxury offering in Pune to watch out for. The group has already delivered 24K Glitterati. Their other projects like 24K Glamore, 24K Glitterati II and 24K Sereno at Baner are currently up for grabs. | A



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Mumbai Mumbai tops the list in the luxury housing market with 29 per cent of under-construction units priced above ` 1 crore, as against 11 per cent and five per cent in the National Capital Region (NCR) and Bengaluru. Area: Prabhadevi, Lower Parel and Bandra-Kurla Complex. Prices: ` 25,000/sq.ft. to ` 110,000/sq.ft.

Pic courtesy: M3M Group

Delhi NCR South and Central Delhi luxury homes range from ` 15,000/sq.ft. to ` 65,000/sq.ft. In the prime areas of Gurgaon, luxury homes range from ` 7500/sq.ft. to ` 30,000/sq.ft. Bengaluru Bengaluru has the most affordable housing market with 77 per cent of under-construction units priced below 5 million.

Sujay Kalele, CEO, Kolte-Patil Developers says: "Earlier luxury meant a spacious home. But today people want their luxury residences to be loaded with amenities. Today Indians are well aware of the global trends and are willing to go that extra mile to get what they want. They seek that touch of excellence in everything: from the clothes they wear, the car they drive or the house they live in. The sheer number of people who are not willing to compromise on their standard of living, is constantly on the rise. The key differentiator for the brand 24K is the fact that we have laid down a set of brand guidelines called the 24K Design Thinking philosophy. They are listed as 24 attributes, that they are constantly evolving as and when the customer needs change. Each and every 24K property must abide by these 24 attributes for it to qualify as 24K. These attributes govern the amenities that are a part of the projects. 24K has collaborated with some of the best global brands such as PorcelanosaGrupo to ensure that the residences exude the elegance and excellence that they stand for." The luxury housing segment in India holds immense prospects for the new and existing players. The consumers are now global citizens and want to have the same finesse in their homes that they have experienced internationally. They need a home that announces their arrival, and offers a higher lifestyle. In Pune, the Sobha Group has completed three luxury projects Sobha Carnation, Sobha Ivory and Sobha Garnet in Kondhwa. Surajit Chanda, Regional Head (Pune), Sobha Ltd says: "Apart from a good location that offers the best infrastructure the buyers seek the best of amenities and conveniences, styling and design. Equally important for them are specifications of the apartments that include everything from flooring used to the quality of fixtures and fittings and the reputation of the builder. Our Kondhwa projects have created a benchmark of quality and craftsmanship in that micro market. Apart from Sobha’s hallmark engineering 22

excellence in construction, the high point of these projects is the low density of apartments. This ensures huge open spaces. The open spaces are beautifully landscaped. To add to the luxury we have a host of world-class amenities in the campus. It is not only the world-class amenities but the ratio of amenities to the number of apartments that adds to luxury living. We will soon be launching a high-end luxury project in Pune, Sobha Elanza, which is strategically located at Kothrud. With internationally designed high-rise twin towers and ultra luxurious amenities, this project will be a future landmark." Alibaug and Khandala are also seeing a lot of luxury projects shaping up as second homes. 1 Khandala Valley, a luxurious terraced villa project at the foothills of Duke’s Nose in Khandala valley of Western Ghats is the new project from Woodland Housing. The exclusive hill-side gated community which sprawls over 37-acres has 65 signature luxury residencies built on sole plots and each unit nurtures the pristine beauty of the valley alike. The project comprises 20 Istana villas with four bedrooms, 25 Inara villas with three bedrooms and 20 Miraya 2bhk pool villas .The palatial bedrooms of villas open to beautiful private verandas with uninterrupted views of Duke’s Nose above and the lush green surrounding valleys. Joy Kapur, Managing Director, Woodlands Housing says: "The premium segment has grown to a whole new dimension with a lot of Innovative concepts integrated in the luxury segment. Luxury housing today is much more than just golfbased or destination-based, wellness-based, spa-based and other themes for residents who aspire to experience endless amenities within their vicinity. Branded residences, which offer the best services of both five-star hotel chain and a luxury apartment, is an emerging concept in luxury housing in India, where developers will collaborate with international luxury hospitality or lifestyle brands. The concept is slowly

Luxury housing in the prime areas of Bengaluru (UB City, Indiranagar, Koramangala Spencers Road, Edwardian Road, core CBD) range from ` 15,000/sq.ft. to 30,000/sq.ft. gaining ground in India, with projects coming up across the country. Theme homes and designer homes are other concept getting popular among affluent buyers taking inspiration from European construction world." Luxury housing in India is expected to grow by 30 per cent between 2013 and 2016, but it is the super luxury segment which is growing even faster. Venkatramana Raju, CEO, Four Clover says: "According to The Ministry of Statistics Program and Implementation and the analysis done by PricewaterhouseCoopers there will be a growth of eight to nine per cent. Also, they have predicted that the introduction of Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), improved market sentiment and more efforts by the government to reduce project loopholes and bottlenecks in transactions will go a long way in clearing the way for positive trends in 2015." The realty market may look saturated but luxury real estate is getting into a new era. Premium and luxury segment in India has seen unprecedented rise and growth thanks to the rising income level and affluent buyers who aspire to possess a home that reflect their financial and social status. The easy availability of finance has also helped the higher middle-class group and domestic buyers to upgrade and invest in the luxury projects. With the cut-throat competition amongst the luxury developers, luxury projects are now more affordable than ever. The current and the most upcoming trend is to focus on exclusivity. The enclave format that brings in the exclusivity quotient to perfection would be the future luxury homes. | A



September 2015

Pic courtesy: Lodha Group

B u y a S e c on d H om e i n I n d i a a n d Ad d t o Yo u r We a l t h Property is one asset class that has remained solid and growing in India despite the fluctuating economic scenario. So even if you own a property here you can buy another one to add to your asset class, says ARCHANA SINHA


ith the Indian property market booming and new projects being launched in almost every upcoming area, it is no wonder that many people are looking to buy a second home as an investment option or even to plan for providing a space for the growing family. If you are planning to buy another property in India, even if you bought one a few years earlier, go ahead; a second home in India is a good idea for multiple reasons. First of all it offers an investment leverage to the owner.

For example, in any other form of investment, be it fixed deposits, mutual funds or equities, investors need to put in one hundred per cent money, whereas buying a home offers you the opportunity to put in only 20 per cent as the down payment. The remaining 80 per cent can be borrowed from any financial institution as a bank loan. Property is a lifelong asset and you would rarely lose money in it if you buy for the long term. This is one asset class

that has remained solid despite economic uncertainties on the global and domestic fronts in India. Additionally, while it is a large asset, real estate enjoys good liquidity. It is for this reason alone that second homes have become a popular investment choice for many. According to Mr. Anuj Puri, Country Head, JLL India,“Indians are traditionally attracted to the idea of investment in this asset class as it has been one of the safest investment pockets where 23


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appreciation is steady. For many buyers, a second home is often bought in the upcoming suburbs or outside the city, to get respite from crowded cities, extreme heat and the stresses of work. For others, it’s a quick way to generate cash or to secure the future of a growing child.” According to a study conducted by, a Bengaluru-based e-business consulting firm, second-home sales in India increased by 50 per cent from 2002 to 2007. It slowed down a bit between 2008-2010, mostly due to the economic downturn in the United States, says Amar Sodhi, owner of Avatar International, a United Kingdombased property brokerage firm. He points out, however, that secondary property is still in demand and has once again picked up tremendously among Indian buyers and non-resident Indians (NRIs.) “Now it’s a normal, regulated market where good stuff sells very quickly,” he says.

In fact, the recent buying pattern of NRIs have shown that they do not necessarily buy in resort towns or in big metropolitan areas. Many choose to buy residential property close to their parental homes or in cities where they have bought their primary property. Many buy in the suburbs. Ms. Vineeta Narain, an NRI residing in Colorado, USA, whose father has been in India says, "I bought my first house to gift my parents a better living standard in Delhi and recently bought a second home in Gurgaon as it fetches good rental income that brings in additional cash to my kitty.” She adds, “Most NRIs would like to keep the option open to come back to India, after our working years are well-spent here in our adopted country. You can say it is our retirement plan, where hired maid servants and domestic help is available easily and we get an additional comfort of being close to our friends and families.”

A HOME FOR THE FUTURE Many NRIs thus buy a second home as part of their retirement plan, if they wish to return to India in their old age. They give it out on rent while staying in their primary home, or sometimes sell it for an appreciated price to add additional wealth to their coffers. Sometimes if they wish to stay back in their adopted country, they still have the option to sell out and add wealth to their income. Samujjwal Ghosh, Vice-President-Marketing, Lodha Group avers, “Many buyers have invested in a second home, which 24

Pic courtesy: Parksyde Homes

For some time, second home purchases were focused on the high end of the market. But now, as another 10 to 15 million people join the ranks of the middle classes, buying activities are seen in the affordable housing segment, points out a report from Tata Housing Limited, from both Indian buyers and the non-resident Indians (NRIs). The report observes that this is true of those who are already in jobs for more than four years and have some disposable income to buy mid-level housing. NRIs can easily buy a house in India because they were born here, or if it is the birthplace of their parents or grandparents.

"An investment made in a property today is sure to attract returns in the immediate future. The amount of returns depends on the project, location, and proximity to business centres, among other things. The property owner can also earn a fixed income from the property by offering it on rent.” - Mayur Shah, Managing Director, Marathon Group they use as a vacation home also. A second home provides the perfect escape from the bustle of the city – offering the luxury of space within the home and ample open spaces outside, both rare in cities. Sizable returns could be expected from second homes as they are sited within close proximity by road and airports from major metros. Although sometimes stereotyped as a holiday home, a self-encompassing project that offers a plethora of world-class leisure options and ease of living could serve well as a home for long stays too. Such projects considerably reduce the cost of maintenance as compared to an individual country house located in a remote area. Sometimes these homes are also fitted with sports facilities that offer the opportunity for sports such as golf, tennis, cricket and leisure alternatives like a spa and entertainment options. It has some advantage in it for every member in the family.” Ashish Puravankara, Managing Director, Puravankara Projects, Bengaluru, who has projects in other cities of Southern India says, “Customers buying second homes are on the rise as the real estate market continues to grow exponentially in the country. There are two main objectives that drive the decision to invest in a second home: a) Lifestyle / Leisure and b) Financial Investment in Real Estate.”

He adds, “Many customers look to enhance their lifestyle with a weekend/vacation home and most of these customers target homes/villas on the outskirts of the city that they currently live in, not more than a few hours’ drive from the city. However it must be noted that these markets are illiquid and price appreciation over a period of time would be modest. We have also seen a large percentage of the population securing post retirement homes, to be amongst like-minded communities. If consumers are looking to buy a second home as a financial investment or to accommodate a growing family, opting for a second home in large metropolitan cities is a wise move. It is imperative that consumers follow the same due diligence process as with purchasing their first home. It is essential to focus on the right developer, right city, location within the city, supporting infrastructure and other commercial activity, which will ensure robust capital appreciation as well as steady rental income. Investors can expect a 15 -18 per cent annualised return over the long term, on investing in projects of Grade A developers in large metropolitan cities."

RETURNS THROUGH RENTALS Mayur Shah, Managing Director, Marathon Group, feels | A


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that rapid growth seen in the Indian economy, coupled with a considerable positive change in the lifestyle of people living in metros, has contributed to the spurt in buying second homes. He adds, “When an NRI visits his kin at home, he also sees these changes and in turn thinks about investing in a home, whether second or first. Demand for properties in metros is rising, leading to a hike in property prices. An investment made in a property today is sure to attract returns in the immediate future. The amount of returns depends on the project, location, and proximity to business centres, among other things. The property owner can also earn a fixed income from the property by offering it on rent. The presence of increased capital income and regular income through rent makes it profitable to own a second home in India. The biggest advantage of buying a second home in India is the owner stays close to his/ her roots in the home country by purchasing a second home in India.” True, for many home buyers, the prime motive of buying a second home has been profitability. It is possible to own a second home by just shelling out 30 per cent of the cost of the second home (20 per cent down payment and 10 per cent financing costs). But the earnings come in two ways. You can add to your wealth through rental income and property prices in India are seen to appreciate at the rate of at least 10 per cent annually, which certainly makes an investment in a second home a financially lucrative proposition.

“loss from the second home” against your regular income, thus saving tax. Later if you wish to sell a second home for profits, the acquisition cost is calculated and deducted from the sale price, and the tax is calculated only on the balance amount”. “Conventionally the High Net worth Individuals as well as the NRIs have been the chief second home buyers in India,” says Samujjwal Ghosh, adding, “However with robust improvement in the Indian economic scenario and therefore on the overall job situation, the higher mid segment has also become an


active second home buyer category. Their needs balance equally between aspiration and investment. The majority of our second home high net-worth customers are well travelled individuals who expect a lifestyle, where luxury is as uncompromised as the natural environment of the precinct. They would like to return home to a world-class environment that offers both.” Mid-segment homes have seen a rise in the uptake recently. Many who own a house in the metropolitan cities let out their city houses and shift to less expensive localities in Tier2 towns where they buy a more spacious home in less than they might have spent to buy their first home.


• Investing in a second home offers multiple benefits to home buyers.

The demand for second homes can be seen across the country, in a variety of cities and locations.

• They can earn rental returns for the owners, or be enjoyed as vacation homes.

WEST INDIA Mumbai and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) has always been the most coveted destination for those who can afford it. Upcoming suburbs of Thane, Dombivali-Kalyan and the beach locations of Alibaug in the MMR region have seen an uptake in demand for second homes and vacation homes alike. Pune, Goa Nagpur, Nashik, Ahmedabad, and Baroda are the other cities where development and demands are on the rise.

• They can also offer a safety net for the post-retirement years.

The Company Spokesman of Kalpataru Ltd adds another angle to the story of rising investment in second homes. “Rise in disposable income, increasing affluence and the aspiration for a relaxed lifestyle has been instrumental in the driving growth for second homes in India,” the spokesperson says. Of course, he also concedes that the segment "largely consists of buyers who either invest in second homes for post-retirement purposes or those who wish to earn a rental income. However, in recent times, second home buyers are no longer retired personnel but young individuals in their 30s and 40s. The urban population is more inclined towards peaceful luxury living, away from the hustle and bustle of the city life either for vacationing or for an occasional weekend relaxation. Some also see it as a investment proposition or invest for their young children as a security in asset class. Investing in a second house situated in a prime location or at least in a location that has a good scope for development in the future is very important.”

TAX BENEFITS Pic courtesy: Puravankara Projects

A second home in India can also provide a tax hedge, explains Mr. Sanjay Dutt, Executive Managing Director of Cushman & Wakefield, South Asia. “The purchase of a second home offers a number of tax benefits. The tax benefits are less when compared to the investment in your first home, but do present an opportunity to save some tax money. The rental income from your second home can be adjusted towards the interest that you pay for the home loan for the second home. If the interest paid is more than the rent that you receive, you can set off the



Regarding locations in Mumbai and MMR region Mayur Shah says, “Navi Mumbai has witnessed massive residential and commercial development in the past few years. The development received a thrust with the plans for Navi Mumbai International airport. Infrastructure growth has also been taking place at a rapid pace, a prime reason for the development of the city. Along with better roads, the emergence of metro and monorail will improve the connectivity in this city. We expect these developments to continue at a faster rate in the coming five years. Along with basic infrastructure, social infrastructure has and will continue to grow. International schools, medical facility at par with global standards, huge stadium, shopping malls and theme parks have all taken place. These factors will contribute to a rapid residential development in the coming five years.” He also feels that Mulund, Badlapur and Dombivali are also upcoming areas around Mumbai for second homes. In Panvel, Marathon Group is constructing a township ‘Marathon Nexzone’, spread over 26 acres and is strategically located in the close proximity of Palaspe-phata (the junction of NH 4B, NH 4 and NH 17). In Badlapur and Dombivali, properties range from Rs 10 lakh to 45 lakh. Marathon Group is currently developing their project titled Marathon Nextown in Dombivali with options of 1BHK, 2BHK and combination apartments; and Marathon Nagari and Marathon Nagari NX at Badlapur. The project offers 1 and 2 BHK and combination apartments with the latest amenities. Mr. Ghosh from the Lodha Group advocates the outskirts of the city and the Mumbai-Pune expressway for good projects. He says, “Looking at our offerings, Lodha Belmondo, a 100-

acre, project off the Pune expressway is an ideal option for those looking for a resort-styled, self-contained luxury destination or even an alternative to a farm house or a golf club. It has a golf course and concierge service and housekeeping to ensure all your needs are addressed even before you arrive. A plethora of indoor and outdoor amenities and acres of open spaces have something in it for the entire family and what’s truly priceless is a riverside promenade that stretches for a kilometre along the banks of the Pavana, which is a perennial river.” These can be used as both second homes and vacation homes. Kalpataru Group offers an array of projects in Mumbai and the Amoda Reserve – large villa homes located 2000 feet above sea level at Kunenama, Lonavala, Maharashtra; Amoda Reserve is positioned as a home where one’s heart and mind feels most relaxed and comfortable. The project spreads over 60 acres of land which is completely surrounded by the Sahyadri Mountains, of which 37 acres of land is reserved for themed and natural landscaping. These homes are for premium customers who want high-end homes for an uber lifestyle, They can use it when coming down from abroad or for get-togethers with families and friends.. Pune, Nashik and Nagpur are thriving cities where real estate development is taking place in a rapid pace. Mr. Sujay Kalele, CEO, Kolte-Patil Developers in Pune says, "Pune is growing in all directions and people are buying properties too. Many people are buying two or three properties as they wish to gift their children a property each, or sometimes wish to secure their future. Some also buy for long-term investment purposes. Other developers from South India are coming to these cities to offer interesting properties in

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these cities. Puravankara Group is also slated to start their project in Pune in the active real estate Kharadi – Mundhwa Corridor with Purva Silver Sands.

SOUTH INDIA Bengaluru, Mysuru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kochi, Trivandrum are preferred cities for good and lucrative property buying. Mr. Ashish Puravankara of Puravankara Projects, Bengaluru, who has projects across many cities in South India, has seen a significant demand for second homes in naturally ambient locations as well as in self-sufficient projects that offer entertainment and ease of living. He says, “The real estate market in South India has offered robust and sustainable returns to investors and continue to be affordable for a large part of the city’s population, thereby ensuring that there is a buyer for the property when the investor chooses to exit the investment. The micro markets of Chennai, Bengaluru and Kochi and Pune are doing well and the areas with potential for good appreciation.” According to him, in Chennai the Guindy - Velachery - Pallikaranai Corridor is a thriving market. Bengaluru Kanakapura Road Corridor in South Bangalore, Hebbal Hennur Corridor in North Bengaluru, Mysore Road and Whitefield etc are thriving with activities in Bengaluru Purva Scarlet Terraces, a high-rise property in Kanakapura Road corridor with close proximity to NICE Road offering 2BHK and 3BHK units are priced around ` 65 lakh and above. Purva Palm Beach, Hennur Road with a beachthemed residential apartment project, spreads over 19.37 acres with a central courtyard, offering high-end 2 and 3 BHK apartments. Prices start from ` 70 lakh. Mr Puravankara says Kochi and Trivandrum are also seeing a good demand from people who have got to other countries from South India.

Pic courtesy: Pharande Spaces

NORTH INDIA Among the cities that are seeing a rise in demand for good properties in the north are New Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR), Chandigarh, Shimla, Manali, Sonepat, Dehradun, Nainital, and Ranikhet, to name a few. In Delhi and the NCR region Noida, Gurgaon and Faridabad and Ghaziabad are the favourite locations.


RECENT STUDIES by many property consultants show trends of people opting for tier-2 and 3 cities as well as hill-stations as second home or retirement destinations. Another interesting trend is that the investments in these second homes are not coming from retired people but young individuals in their 30s and 40s, many of whom are NRIs. So, if it is financially feasible, and you do have some disposable income to invest, owning a second home can be an excellent investment for vacation or rental purposes, or to use as a primary home post retirement, even as you build an asset over the long term for your future security. | A



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A re We R e a l l y H e ad i n g f o r a C r a s h ? It is important to ascertain the reasons behind the current realty trends in Mumbai and not give in to the speculative stories about the market crashing which are rife in the city, says SANDEEP SADH


he real estate market in Mumbai is ripe with news that the markets are artificial and there is an oversupply in the offing. Some research reports suggest that 200,000 apartments are available and other reports say the markets will fall by 50 per cent. Another suggests that the number of launches have reduced in the Mumbai market, but one should understand the reason for this as well. Just because launches have not happened, it does not mean that there is an issue with the developers; it could also be a stalemate. I was at a Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) real estate conclave in July and every panel of developers unanimously blamed the government for delayed permissions and approvals. Let us analyse the stories here and understand once and for all where the markets are headed. Monsoon months are known to be weak in real estate transactions and these added speculative stories without any proper understanding of the real estate markets dampen the spirits, just because of the vested interest of a few stake holders.

To analyse the real estate market in Mumbai, let us break this article into numerous segments, which talk about various aspects of the real estate market and then towards the end, come to some consensus as to which way we are going. Is the fall staring in our faces, or is it stagnation, or will they rise, contrary to all reports?

READY POSSESSION FLATS IN MUMBAI One of the most important factors in a price correction or dip in the real estate market in any geography is the ready possession stock or unsold inventory in a project/building. This ready possession stock is from the primary market, which refers to the leftover unsold stock with developers and builders. In any mature market, if the developer is left with up to 10 to 20 per cent unsold inventory, it is quite standard.

QUICK FACTS • Before blindly believing reports that a market crash in Mumbai is imminent, it is wise to understand the dynamics of the current situation. • With the rupee being at its weakest in August, it’s a good idea to take advantage of the reduction in prices and the fall in the rupee, which can together make the price attractive by anywhere from 10 to 15 per cent.

The primary reason for this is that after the project reaches its top slab the sales plummet as the payment due is almost 90 per cent and completion of the project takes another 27


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year or more. If the buyer gets in at this stage, he has to pay an additional service tax, now at 4.20 per cent of the consideration value, plus Value-Added Tax (VAT) of one per cent. If he waits till possession, he does not have to pay this once the Occupation Certificate (OC) is received and he straightaway saves 5.20 per cent on the cost.

Synopsis: If in certain micro markets, there is much availability and less absorption, those micro markets stand a chance to be corrected at any time and it is healthy for all parties concerned. Any price decrease will bring back the traction in the micro markets and will result in price increase in times to come.

Also, the inventory available at this stage is either the higher floors or the lower floors which have not been sold due to views, higher floor rise or Vastu factors. This inventory gets absorbed over a period of time as there are many people who only want ready possession homes; then they compare it to the secondary market and only if the deal is sweet enough is it done. In Mumbai, the leftover stock that is available with the Occupation Certificate (OC), is close to 600 buildings, where there is residual inventory available across Mumbai, Thane and Navi Mumbai. Why we are saying it is 600 -odd buildings is because these buildings, where the stock is leftover, is the stock that is available with the developers for multiple reasons. One such reason is that most of these buildings started construction anywhere between 2009 and 2012 and many of them were stopped because of the new Development Control Regulations (DCR) which came up in 2011 – 12. So sales were stalled earlier as well due to this.


Synopsis: Very few flats are available in each building with developers and this can be absorbed within a span of six to 12 months. Negotiations do happen very strongly on these properties and developers could cut back 10 to 20 per cent on the prices depending on demand and supply and their personal financial liquidity need.

UNDER-CONSTRUCTION PROPERTIES This we can refer to as Stock in Trade as well and it cannot be qualified negatively as unsold inventory. There is a stark difference between these two understandings. When a building is launched, the developer sets up his 28


sales targets at the time of the pre-launch, launch, post launch and sales strategies till possession depending on his holding power, market conditions, product, segment and averaging out of prices.

As per an estimate there are more than 1,500 underconstruction buildings /complexes in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region and they are slated for possession from 2016 to 2020.

It would be absolutely unfair to treat this as a weak point that the developer has unsold inventory, and this should be only be classified as Stock in Trade. Sales continue to happen based on various 20:80 schemes or 10:90:10 schemes. Of course, many developers face a crisis in the mid-life of the project when they ask for 40 to 50 per cent payment due after showing work done till Level 3 or 5 and hence, this is the time the financial schemes play an important role to straighten the sales graph, which could be going down at this stage.

Coming to the important question—will the correction happen here? The answer is that depending on the micromarket, developer's financial condition and sales strategy, the markets could go in any direction.

Changing the current rates to negative for any developer is an impossible task as he cannot do so because of his last achieved sales, the sales targets and the averaging out. Hence, financial schemes further work well keeping in mind the interest of the old investor or the home buyer and current buyer. Each buyer can buy a property at a different price point with some benefit or the other—either it could be the launch price or the upfront payment or the structured financial scheme overall. The cycle of under-construction properties runs anywhere between two to five years of sales and the maximum sales we see is in the pre-launch and launch. Hence, the market today is more in favour of pre-launches than actual sales. In Mumbai Metropolitan Region (Mumbai, Thane and Navi Mumbai) the challenge developers are facing is micro-market competition. In each market, there are a few branded players with good projects and with state-of-the-art amenities and prices are really competitive.

It is important to understand that before the market falls sharply as mentioned in various reports, it goes through a certain phase, which is known as 'Stagnation'. If this stagnation lasts for more than six months, the fall is imminent. The silver lining is that if you look at the chart above you will see enough demand in the market. The market is currently in a price mis-match situation. If the market drops, say, even by 20 per cent, there will be awesome traction, as it will align with demand and the supply will get absorbed in no time, and the market will be bouncing back. If you also read in between the lines, if no launches have happened in the past few months, it is good for the market for the time being, as with no new inventory building up, the old one will get absorbed first. There cannot be a day when you are in the market and there is nothing there; even supermarkets and local convenience stores are filled with their own inventories for sale at any point, which again confirms the stock in trade theory.

NEW LAUNCHES Launches are the catalyst of sales in any developer's office today. Most pre-launches seen in the current property market | A


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September 2015

"Mumbai as a city will always remain buoyant and in times to come if infrastructure shapes up, such as the coastal road, Metro III, Trans-harbour link connecting Sewri to Navi Mumbai, Navi Mumbai Airport and a lot of other bridges to ease traffic, then we are back in the game."

48 month market value change


are happening at less than 20 to 40 per cent of the current market price of an equivalent ready possession property. The main focus of the home buyer remains here today, as this is where investors can make money, the home buyer can pay over a period of three to five years in a staggered payment plan and this market cannot correct more than what it is offering in any case. People speak about cycles in the economy and so on, but the cycles are really short and in the current market and stock market situation in India, the money markets are tight as families are more inclined towards consolidation, new business avenues and start-ups. A few years ago, 30

Synposis: The Pre-Launch segment in the real estate market always comes at a price, which is lower than the existing market price. The developers will not lower the price or even launch the project if the timing is not right and the price is not attractive enough to draw people to invest or buy. Also, each location in Mumbai has a different outlook. If any top developer launches a good project with correct rates and aligns himself with the buyer's expectations, then he can see a thunderous response to his project contrary to the market conditions which may have a weak outlook.

the commercial real estate inventory was, for example, 30 million sq. ft of available space in Mumbai alone. Come 2015, the inventory is now available in single digit figures. Mumbai as a city will always remain buoyant and in times to come if infrastructure shapes up, such as the Coastal Road, Metro III, Trans-harbour link connecting Sewri to Navi Mumbai, Navi Mumbai Airport and a lot of other bridges to ease traffic, then we are back in the game. The new launches were stalled due to the new Development Plan Rules 2034 wherein the Maharashtra government

mapped the city wrong (they even called the Reliance Convention Centre at Bandra-Kurla Complex a pond!) due to which the new developments are stalled awaiting their Intimation of Disapproval (IOD) and Commencement Certificate (CC). Mumbai markets have been performing decently over the past four years and yes, a small 10 to 20 per cent reduction in certain micro-markets in under- construction projects can bring the required traction back. Investors need to feel comfortable about the returns and even if they get better than bank rates, they are a happier lot compared to the stock market which plummets on the Greece financial collapse or the China Yuan going down. non-resident Indians (NRIs) contribute a great deal to Indian real estate and with the rupee being at its all-time weak in August, it’s a good idea to take advantage of the reduction in prices and the fall in the rupee, which can together make the price attractive by anywhere from 10 to 15 per cent.

Sandeep Sadh CEO www. | A



September 2015

M o v i n g To w a r d s M a t u r i t y A rapidly changing real estate sector is seeing greater professionalism and transparency as it seeks to pull itself out of difficult times, says MENKA SHIVDASANI


Director, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd, set the tone in his inaugural address when he said: "I have managed 17 businesses, and the real estate industry is the only one which has unlimited demand." What was important, he added, was to have the right product at the right price.

Arun Nanda, Past Chairman, CII Western Region &

JLL, the Knowledge Partner on the occasion, released a report - Is Indian real estate heading towards a tectonic shift?. "The ongoing transition within the real estate sector offers us a foretaste of what the near future beholds," it said. "We foresee sweeping changes in the way real estate developers conduct their business, particularly looking at the innovative practices and agility of a certain new breed of developers… For home buyers, the recent changes and future transition will bring about a more transparent market that is not just sensitive to their needs, but also sensitive to the ecology at large." Anuj Puri, Chairman – CII (WR) Real Estate Conclave 2015 and Chairman & Country Head, JLL India,

hen real estate industry experts met in Mumbai on July 29 for the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Real Estate Conclave, there were two major themes that took centre-stage. The first was that Indian developers are recognising that they cannot afford to ignore the customer's needs and priorities; the second was that the industry is moving towards transparency and better self-regulation. The conference, titled Remoulding Around Change - Customer, Growth, Regulation focused on issues such as the new rules of real estate in a resurgent Indian economy, funding innovations and strengthening capital flows, and turning around the downturn in residential sales, among other things. There was no doubt in anyone's mind in the packed hall that greater professionalism was essential for survival, and that, in fact, real estate players had already made much headway along that path.

spoke of a move towards transparency in the Indian markets, pointing out that JLL's Global Real Estate Transparency Index, which evaluates 102 countries worldwide, has seen India improve from 50th position in 2008 to 40th position as of the latest 2014 study. He also observed that the industry would see increased consolidation, with smaller players turning to larger developers for joint ventures. Home buyers do not mind paying a premium for properties from corporate developers, he observed, because they would perceive such investments as being safer. Niranjan Hiranandani, Managing Director, Hiranandani Group of Companies also pointed out that corporate participation in the real estate market has helped in increasing the reputation of the sector. Highlighting the need for infrastructure, he stated that in a city like Mumbai, development of infrastructure with the Cross Harbour Bridge, Metro connectivity, River project for 24x7 water supply and



September 2015

Some examples of mid and upper-mid segment projects with lifestyle amenities

QUICK FACTS • A recent real estate conclave highlighted the rapid changes in the industry and the importance of placing the customer's needs first. • Financial discipline, greater transparency and professionalism are vital to ensure growth, said experts. • As the industry recognises the need for change, home buyers can expect better quality and world-class standards.

in secondary business districts (SBDs) and peripheral business districts (PBDs)." This has, of course, led to tremendous growth of residential real estate in and around these areas, opening up new opportunities for property investment. Source: Jll India

open spaces on the reclamation lands were required. "The vision of Project NAINA shared by the Chief Minister of Maharashtra is expected to add around two times the land area of Mumbai to the city making Housing for All a reality," he said. He also felt that while Kerala and Goa draw most of the tourist traffic today, a place like Alibaug near Mumbai could offer stiff competition as a tourist destination if the Maharashtra government put adequate infrastructure in place. There was some discussion on how, despite Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ambitious plans, there was little action on the ground. Dharmesh Jain, Chairman of Nirmal Lifestyle, who recently took over as President of MCHI - CREDAI, observed that it was unrealistic to expect that a "magic wand" would be waved when Mr. Modi took over. "Things are moving in the right direction, and if you are patient, you will see change," he commented. "In the last 12 months, there

has been a certain optimism." Referring to a 'trust deficit' on the part of home buyers towards developers because of delayed projects, he pointed out given the extent of funds that were being locked in, it was in the developer's own interest to finish a project as soon as possible. One reason for project delays is the time it takes for various permissions to come in, Mr. Jain observed, but he expressed confidence that in the next 12 months, the industry would witness a 'dramatic change' in this regard. The discussions spanned the gamut from office spaces to retail to alternative asset classes such as logistics and warehousing. "The trend of companies migrating to offices in suburbs – driven by a combination of cheaper rents and lesser commute times for workforce – has risen sharply over the last decade," said the JLL report. "Not only the location-independent IT/ ITeS companies but other sectors too are setting up office spaces

"Things are moving in the right direction, and if you are patient, you will see change. In the last 12 months, there has been a certain optimism." - Dharmesh Jain, President, MCHI - CREDAI

The penultimate session on residential real estate saw participation by several leading developers, including Ashok Mohanani, Chairman and Managing Director, EKTAworld, Deepak Goradia, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director, Dosti Realty, Boman Irani, Chairman and Managing Director, Rustomjee Group, Sandeep Runwal, Director, Runwal Group, Umang Kuwadia, Executive Director, Happy Home Group of Companies, Navin Makhija, Managing Director, The Wadhwa Group and Ashish Raheja, Managing Director, Raheja Universal (Pvt) Ltd. The topic of discussion involved turning around the downturn in the real estate sector, and Mr. Mohanani pointed out that two things were crucial - innovation and technology. "I'm not speaking of product innovation, because doing the best is a given," he clarified. "I'm talking about innovation in customer experience." Much work still remains to be done, it must be said, but there is no doubt that in the last decade, the real estate sector has seen a tremendous change. As the JLL report points out, "post the economic liberalisation of 1991 during the IT boom in the last decade (2000s), the sector has witnessed two business cycles. The latest cycle (2005 - 10) ended up with a lot of learning for the stakeholders, and has made the sector relatively more mature and transparent." There is still a way to go, but India is getting there. Pg 33: The Pillars of Transition

32 | A



September 2015

T h e P i l l a r s o f Tr a n s i t i on JLL India outlines the four P's of real estate that are driving change in the industry and improving the home buyer's experience

PLAYERS The real estate industry has been a highly localised industry in India with each city being dominated by a select few developers. However, in the post-global financial crisis (GFC) era, several developers started to expand their footprint to newer geographies. For example – K Raheja Corporation, dominant in Mumbai, forayed into the Hyderabad IT segment through its Mindspace park in 2004, Godrej Properties, dominant in Mumbai, forayed into Ahmedabad through its Garden City project in 2013 and entered the Pune market by way of its Horizon project at Undri in 2012. A recent entrant in the Indian realty space and primarily on the retail segment is the Xander group, which is establishing a pan-India portfolio of properties spanning diverse asset types starting with its VR Mall at Surat, (completed in 2013). It is highly likely that the trend of large and well capitalised developers building a pan-India portfolio of real estate assets may sustain and strengthen over the next decade as the market matures and weaker players get weeded out for lack of capital, corporatisation, and technical prowess. Eventually, the sector would witness a period of consolidation wherein large, well-capitalised developers would gain market share by either purchasing assets or acquiring smaller players... The introduction of real estate investment trusts (REITs) would catalyse the transition as private equity (PE) funds would be able to make exits from their current projects freeing up capital for more judicious deployment in future years.

PROCESSES Ongoing changes in how real estate stakeholders are carrying out their business in India reveal a change in market perception.

Growing acceptance of international real estate consultants

As against the 1990s, when multinationals that entered India largely adopted the Indian standards in real estate, the IT-era growth post 2000 witnessed offshore companies demanding quality IT space. Besides, India’s growing prowess in the world of services, trade and business resulted in a wider participation of multinational companies, who shifted their base to India and created a natural expectation for superior quality of construction, architecture and design. Local developers left no stone unturned to ensure best practices

Real estate records going online

"The IT sector has dominated space occupancy for almost a decade and is now exploring new cities for expansion or creation of new bases. The necessity to exert tight control on occupancy cost, to maintain cost-competitiveness, prompt IT/ITES to scout for alternate destinations that have an abundance of skilled manpower. This is resulting into the emergence of new cities. JLL India

across the globe were gradually adopted. More recently, we are beginning to witness the trend of outsourcing of AEIC (Architecture, Engineering, Interior and Contractor) practices to globally renowned agencies in an effort to make Indian cities stand out...

Property transactions becoming increasingly legitimate

While the property market slowdown in India since 2011 has hurt many, one positive thing that has happened is the consistent fall in cash component (source of black money) in property purchases. Over the last years, property prices have almost stagnated across major real estate markets. As a result, majority buyers who are currently active in the market are salaried people who can support a loan but cannot afford cash payments. Today, as much as 80 per cent of buyers in top cities are salaried employees. Today, almost all newly developed residential properties can be bought with 100 per cent white money. Many resale properties too are available without the cash component. Government’s recent budgetary measures to encourage or incentivise electronic payment for large transactions such as property purchase, and simultaneously raise punitive action against illegal transaction, will further help reduce cash dealings.

India is today at the forefront of adopting technological innovations into practice across a wide variety of businesses and public administration mechanism. Initiatives such as e-governance and Digital India are bringing about sweeping changes in the way public administration operates and records are maintained. In the last five to seven years, a few government websites have taken the lead in making critical land and registration records available online, thereby giving a new boost to market transparency.

PRODUCTS There is a change in the way construction quality and techniques have evolved over the years. By simple observation, projects completed before 2000 mostly had older design and no amenities. The buildings had no element of sustainability – energy water harvesting system, security systems, advance safety norms etc. .. Post the beginning of IT boom in India around the year 2000, large IT companies and other MNCs who wanted to enter India in a big way, expressed their desire to occupy space in modern offices. These factors led to Indian developers delivering superior construction quality that fulfils the requirement of MNCs and IT companies.

PLACES Property markets are evolving at every stage, starting from tier-I cities since liberalisation days to tier-II cities post the IT-ITES boom in India during the late 1990s. Driven by rapid pace of growth of the services sector, markets strengthened in the tier-I cities, which were predominantly occupied by sectors such as BFSI, Pharmaceuticals, FMCG and Media... Today, cities such as Bangalore and Pune are dotted with the presence of large IT multinationals and the incremental space for new entrants is getting limited. The IT sector has dominated space occupancy for almost a decade and is now exploring new cities for expansion or creation of new bases... This is resulting into the emergence of new cities such as Chandigarh, Visakhapatnam, Vijayawada, Mysore, Kochi, Coimbatore, Tiruchi, Bhubaneswar, Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar, Jaipur as the new centres of choice for setting up large-scale IT infrastructure. Source: 'Is Indian real estate heading towards a tectonic shift?'; a JLL/ CII report 33


September 2015

Choose W isely

A housing finance company that can hand-hold the customer right through the home buying process is of utmost importance, says RENU SUD KARNAD

QUICK FACTS • Stability in property prices and softening of interest rates has renewed the interest of the NRI community in the Indian real estate sector. • Buying a property requires great planning as it is the largest investment for individuals in their lifetime.


uying a property back home definitely ranks as one of the greatest dreams for Indians irrespective of which part of the world they live in. A home in India is simply a must. And the Indian laws, over the years, have made this a fairly easy job.

planning as it is the largest investment for individuals in their lifetime and hence one should not try to finalise on a property in a hurry. Initial ground work must be carried out in terms of trend in property prices, reputation of the builder for timely delivery, visit to the site and so on.

NRIs have always shown interest in the India housing market and are continuing to show this at a time when the local demand is relatively sluggish. Stability in property prices and softening of interest rates has renewed the interest of the NRI community in the Indian real estate sector. Searching for the right property calls for meticulous planning, which involves scanning through numerous options initially and finally choosing the best option based on one's needs keeping in mind the financial parameters.

 Due Diligence: One must ascertain that the property, whether completed or under construction, has all clearances, such as environment and municipal clearances and that documents with regard to ownership of the property are in place.

While a buyer may be very keen to buy a property, getting down to the home buying process may be an onerous task, more so if the buyer is based out of India. Given this, and the inherent need for a large number of Indians based abroad to invest in a property back home, some points need to borne in mind before making a property buying decision.  Initial Ground Work: Buying a property requires great 34

 Source of Finance: NRIs can take home loans up to 80 per cent of the agreement value of the property in India and the NRI has the opportunity to repay the down payment account through normal banking channels like Non-Resident Ordinary (NRO) account or Non-Resident External (NRE) account in India.  Documentation: Documents such as copies of passport, valid visa and work permit, contract of employment, work experience certificate, salary certificate and statements of non-resident external (NRE) or non-resident ordinary (NRO) accounts are usually required. However some financial institutions may insist on Power of Attorney

(PoA). An NRI buyer can give a power of attorney (PoA) to a person resident in India so that he or she may complete formalities such as registration, possession, execution of agreement of sale and so on. A PoA can be given to execute all contracts, deeds, mortgages, lease, sale and all matters relating to managing the property. Some of the cities that NRIs have shown an interest are:  Bengaluru: The Silicon Valley of India has super-luxury, luxury and premium projects catering to a large number of expatriates and Non-Resident Indians (NRIs).  Chennai: The presence of the automobile industry in and around the city has earned it the title of ‘Detroit of Asia’ and due to the large scale of an IT/ITES workforce, it is witnessing demand from NRI investors.  Mumbai: The financial capital of the country and one of the world's top 10 centres of commerce has seen an inherent demand from the NRI community. The recently completed and ongoing infrastructure initiatives also boost the real estate growth in the city. In a nutshell, there are two aspects of home buying— Property Search and Home Loans. It may make sense to go with a home loan company that can help tackle both aspects right from the selection of the property to loan processing. Against this backdrop, choosing a good housing finance company to hand-hold the customer right through the home buying process is of utmost importance. An experienced Housing Finance Company that offers a wide range of customised products and is present across the country should be preferred.

Ms Renu Sud Karnad

is Managing Director of HDFC Ltd, a pioneer housing finance company in India, with offices in London, Dubai and Singapore and service associates in Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia – Al Khobar, Jeddah and Riyadh. | A




There’s no better time to invest in Indian Real Estate than now. Find out why in the inaugural issue of

India Property Insider, is a monthly publication which is going to empower the NRI audience in the UAE with ‘need to know’ and ‘nice to know’ facts about the real estate sector in India. A credible source you can turn to when you are about to invest a substantial sum of your hard-earned money in an Indian property. In other words, your one stop for the best Indian property solutions.

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September 2015

Pro j e c t s on O f f e r NAME Esquire LOCATION Goregaon DEVELOPER Oberoi Realty SPECIAL FEATURES 3 and 4BHK apartments in three towers

that form part of Oberoi Garden City; 3BHK (Superior and Supreme) 1330 sq. ft. carpet area, ` 4.3 crore onwards; 4BHK (Royale) 1962 sq ft carpet area ` 5 crore onwards. Oberoi Garden City houses a school, mall, five-star hotel and office spaces. NAME Puneville LOCATION Pune DEVELOPERS Pharande Spaces SPECIAL FEATURE A fully integrated and self-sufficient

luxury township with several amenities that include a hospital, school and Olympic-sized lagoon shape swimming pools. NAME Dosti Imperia LOCATION Thane-Ghodbunder Road DEVELOPER Dosti Realty SPECIAL FEATURES Luxurious deck living, high street retail in premises, right opposite R-Mall; show flat ready. NAME Pride World City LOCATION Off Dhanori Road, Pune DEVELOPER Pride Builders SPECIAL FEATURES: Amenities include convenience shopping, day care, hospital, temple, meditation pavilion. NAME Eastern Winds LOCATION Off Priyadarshini Circle, Chembur, Mumbai DEVELOPER Shree Krishna Group SPECIAL FEATURES A five-minute drive to monorail, ten minutes to the Eastern Freeway. Amenities include gym, meditation and yoga garden, library, coffee corner and much more.


NAME Socorro Gardens LOCATION Porvorim, Goa DEVELOPER Nitin Developers SPECIAL FEATURES Squash court, Clubhouse, Gymnasium,

Swimming pool, Private theatre, Indoor games, Library, Banquet hall & Party lawn, Children’s play area, Housekeeping services, Vehicle-free landscaped gardens. NAME Corlim Gardens LOCATION Old Goa DEVELOPER Nitin Developers SPECIAL FEATURES: Vehicle-free landscaped garden with enchanting water works, play area, clubhouse, table tennis and badminton courts, swimming pool, safety and security features with eco-friendly systems. NAME Premiero LOCATION Dona Paula, Goa DEVELOPER Nitin Developers SPECIAL FEATURES Clubhouse with gymnasium, textured exteriors, covered car parking, multi-purpose leisure room with indoor games, rooftop swimming pool, designer entrance lobby, visitor car parking.

NAME Runwal Bliss LOCATION Kanjurmarg (East), Mumbai DEVELOPER Runwal Group SPECIAL FEATURES 1.5, 2, 3BHK (small and large, with or

NAME Crescent Bay Tower 3 LOCATION Bhoiwada, Parel (E), Mumbai DEVELOPER L & T Realty SPECIAL FEATURES Tentative Possession : December, 2018

2 & 3 BHK 1345 - 1765 Sq.Ft.

NAME KP Towers LOCATION Kothrud, Kakde city, Pune DEVELOPER Kolte Patil Developers Ltd SPECIAL FEATURES Tentative Possession August, 2018,

2 and 3BHK, 1256 - 1844 sq ft.

NAME New Star LOCATION Virar (W), Mumbai DEVELOPER EKTA world Pvt. Ltd. SPECIAL FEATURES 1 and 2 BHK branded homes at ` 3897

per sq. ft. Only 108 units on offer at this special price for 18 days from September 4 to 21. Amenities include entertainment facilities, modular kitchens and landscaped gardens.

NAME Embassy Residency LOCATION Chennai DEVELOPER Embassy Group SPECIAL FEATURES Limited period Double Delight offer –

without deck)

buy a 3BHK luxury lifestyle apartment and get a comfort 2BHK a block away at 40 per cent less for your parents.

NAME Marvel Piazza LOCATION Viman Nagar, Pune DEVELOPER Marvel Realtors SPECIAL FEATURES 2, 3, 3.5 & 4.5 BHK Apartments

NAME One World LOCATION Pudupakkam, Chennai DEVELOPER Artha Real Estate Corporation Limited SPECIAL FEATURES Tentative Possession: July 2018

and Penthouse, designer modular kitchens with hob and chimney, BBQ terrace with paddy field and much more.

Property Type: 3, 4 & 5 BHK Area: 2600 to 6890 sq.ft. | A


September 2015

NAME DSR Fortune Prime LOCATION Near Durgam Cheruvu, Madhapur, Hyderabad DEVELOPER DSR Builders and Developers SPECIAL FEATURES 3 BHK, 3 BHK + Study Room &

4 BHK 2625 to 5860 sq.ft. Tentative Possession: December 2018 NAME L&T Eden Park LOCATION OMR Chennai DEVELOPER L&T Realty SPECIAL FEATURES Spacious 1,2,3BHK Apartments NAME The Uptown LOCATION Thiruvanantapuram DEVELOPER Indroyal Properties SPECIAL FEATURES Super-luxury condominium,

Chauffeured Limousine, 2, 3 ,4 BHK condos

NAME Brigade Cosmopolis LOCATION Whitefield Main Road, Bengaluru DEVELOPER Brigade Group SPECIAL FEATURES 2, 3 & 4 BHK, premium location offers

NAME Uma Aangan LOCATION Ajmer Road, Jaipur DEVELOPER Wish Empire SPECIAL FEATURES Studio, 1, 2 and 3 BHK NAME Luxury Residences LOCATION Sector 99A, Dwarka Expressway, Gurgaon DEVELOPER Satya Group SPECIAL FEATURES 3 and 4 BHK, 1965 to 4436 sq ft,

tentative possession December 2019

NAME Belmonte LOCATION Golf course extension road, Gurgaon DEVELOPER Vipul Group SPECIAL FEATURES 4 BHK, 3190 sq.ft. Ready to move.

NAME Camellias LOCATION Sector 42, Gurgaon DEVELOPER DLF Homes SPECIAL FEATURES 5BHK, tentative possession

December 2017

great connectivity, sky gardens and other top-end amenities

NAME Pristine LOCATION Noida Expressway, New Delhi DEVELOPER ATS SPECIAL FEATURES Penthouses, villas, ground floors

NAME Green Residency LOCATION Kaikhali, Kolkata North DEVELOPER Loharuka SPECIAL FEATURES 2, 3, 4 BHK, tentative possession

December 2015, price starts from ` 29.08 lakh

Disclaimer: Before investing in any of the properties listed here, readers are advised to carry out their own background checks and seek further information and legal advice.

September 2015 September 10-12: The Big 5 Construct India show, Mumbai: Bombay Exhibition Centre, Goregaon (East), Mumbai. An international building and construction event, with more than 250 innovative products and solutions and free technical sessions and workshops (10:00 am to 6:00 pm daily, visitor entry free). September 10-14: Sajavat Furniture And Decor Expo, Pune: A five-day event at Pandit Farm showcases Designer Furniture and Furnishings, Children's Furniture, Office Furniture, Paintings & Frames, Designer Ceilings & Exotic Floors, Artificial Flowers & Curtains, Curtain Carrier Systems, and much more. September 11-13: Construction Architure & Interior, Hyderabad: A three-day event at the Hyderabad International Trade Expositions Centre (HITEX) Exhibition Centre showcasing products and services as well as equipment related to construction, architectural firms and Interior design houses, latest designs and technologies and more etc. in the Building Construction, Architecture & Designing industries. September 24-27: Furniture & Furnishings Show, Goa: Being held at the the Taleigao Community Centre in Goa, it showcases products like Air Conditioners, Artificial and Real Plants, Brassware, Bed Linen, Bathroom fittings, Chandeliers, Computer Trolleys, Curtains, Cushions andcovers, Decorative railings and so on. If you would like your event featured in this column, write in to Developers who are planning road shows may also contact us at this email address with details.



Average Residential Apartment Rates






Andheri East

14730 to 18560


6290 to 7430

Andheri West

19020 to 24670


6620 to 8220


14990 to 20120


6160 to 7420

Church Gate

47670 to 61000

Bhandarkar Road

14830 to 17780

8290 to 10380

Dahanukar Colony

10800 to 13140

Ghodbunder Road


September 2015


Goregaon East

14860 to 19660


5320 to 7140

Goregaon West

14990 to 19580


5310 to 6510





15510 to 20420


Kandivali East

5930 to 6970 12570 to 16270 7170 to 9080

Kalyani Nagar

8400 to 10970


5770 to 7010

Koregaon Park

10250 to 13600


4480 to 5370

Malad West

14050 to 18190

Magarpatta City

7080 to 8680


4280 to 5140

Marine Drive

55650 to 70630


5790 to 7090

Old Mahabalipuram Road

3690 to 4670

Mira Road

Pimple Saudagar

6320 to 7390


4380 to 5520

Mulund West

Viman Nagar

7040 to 8720


4440 to 5250


5010 to 6540


4150 to 5100


3820 to 4600

Thane West

9660 to 12620


5800 to 6880


4450 to 5830


RA Puram

13860 to 18730


3330 to 4090



6040 to 7950



6720 to 8060 12750 to 16400

5130 to 6270

BENGALURU Bannerghatta

69720 to 81650

4530 to 6110

Cambridge Layout

11010 to 14770

Electronic City

3190 to 4230

8110 to 9830


5350 to 7070

Kanakapura Road

4390 to 5750 4490 to 5890

Dwarka Sector 11

8540 to 10580

Dwarka Sector 12


5760 to 7470

Dwarka Sector 19

8100 to 9730


5580 to 6960

Greater Kailash 1

16800 to 21720


Dona Paula

6590 to 8400

Greater Kailash 2

18450 to 23910

MG Road Area

12030 to 16060


3980 to 4860

Neeti Bagh

23690 to 30650

Sarjapur Road

4300 to 5840


4820 to 6920


16210 to 20600


4420 to 5540


4380 to 5400

Uttam Nagar


4220 to 5410

3840 to 4910

Source: MAGICBRICKS.COM Rates As on July 2015

38 | A



September 2015

J a r gon S i m p l i fi e d Administrator If someone dies intestate (without leaving a will), the court appoints an administrator to administer the estate of the deceased person. It is always wise, if you own property, to not allow it to get to that stage; take the trouble to make a will. It will save much heartburn at a later date. Ad valorem Latin meaning 'according to value'; this is normally used to describe a tax based on the assessed value of real property. Assessed Valuation If the government wants to know how much tax you need to pay, it will depend on an assessed valuation. Sometimes, particularly when the market is depressed, this may have nothing to do with the actual amount that was paid. Blanket Mortgage A mortgage that covers more than one piece of property. Caveat Emptor A Latin phrase that you must always keep in mind while buying a property; it means ‘let the buyer beware’. Earlier it imposed a

duty on the buyer to examine the products or property, accepting them ‘as is’. It is your responsibility to do thorough due diligence before buying a property and this phrase reminds you of the fact. Condemnation This is the process by which property of a private owner is taken for public use, with compensation to the owner, under the governmental right of eminent domain. Cul-de-sac A street which dead-ends in a semi-circle. Default This is the omission or failure to perform a legal duty; failure to meet an obligation when due. Try not to get into that situation if you have taken a home loan. Encroachment This is the illegal intrusion of an improvement or other real property onto another’s property. Fiduciary A person in a position of trust relative to another party;

confidential, as in a fiduciary relationship between an agent and the principal. Land Commonly used in the context of real estate, it refers to real property; all below the surface, the surface and the airspace above it, and that which is affixed to it permanently; synonymous with "real property", "realty", and "real estate"; often used to mean only the unimproved surface of the earth. Marketable Title A title which can be readily sold or mortgaged to a reasonably prudent person; a title free from material defects or grave doubts and reasonably free from potential litigation. Negotiable Instrument A written instrument containing a promise of payment, which can be endorsed from one person to another. Warranty Deed A deed in which the grantor warrants or guarantees the title to real property against defects during the grantor's ownership and as far back as a chain-of-title can be established.


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