Affordable Housing, a priority for real estate

With an aim to achieve housing for all by 2020 and thus planning new flats in Delhi/NCR till 2022, finance minister on January 1 had stated that the affordable housing schemes will be given infrastructural status which will be a great deal for builders like Ashiana, Housing, Puravankara. This move will dip the costs for the builders and developers and attract most and more investors.

It would also mean a great hike in demand for loans which would be a step in the forward direction for housing finance companies like Gruh Finance, as well as Repco Home Finance.

“Infrastructure status to the affordable housing segment especially to Noida real estate will mean lower loan costs for the sector and thus aims at the margin issues that private players in this segment face,” said Nidhi Seksaria, Advisory Partner & Leader – Real Estate, BDO India LLP.

“The combined with interest subventions, this could be a big step in making apartments for sale in Noida more affordable,” he said.

Ashiana Housing was already trading 15 percent higher at Rs 163. On the other hand, Puravankara was up by 3 percent. The housing finance companies, Gruh Finance was already up by 1.4 percent while Repco Home Finance was up nearly 2 percent.
To achieve the targets set by the government in the affordable housing sector, the builder tends to increase their number of apartments with a certain decrease in amenities which consequence into lower costs. The competition has increased in the past quarter and thousand of new flats for sale in Noida are being constructed and ready for you to live in.

Ban on registering the Unapproved plots in Tamil Nadu

The banning on the registration of plots which are still unapproved is back in Tamil Nadu with full force. The Madras Court on Friday clearly ordered to restrain all registrations of plots which are still not approved or those who apply for the re-registration with pending layout approvals. The law has been confirmed for the next three weeks and till no further notice comes.
Adding to the ban, the Justice M Sundar and the Chief Justice Indira Banerjee asked for all the details of the applicants of registration with unapproved plots in the violation of the court dated as on September 9, 2016, ban order.
The legal justice has stated that the decision for these issues will be taken after a special sitting which will be organised either on May 4 or on May 5.
The law has turned sour after the case that held on September 9, 2016, when the Chief Justice Kishan Kaul rapidly approved all the registrations of the plots which were still not approved or of those who tried to convert farmlands into housing plots without following the rules and regulations. Also, the bench held responsible all the officials who were personally liable for the violation of rules and regulations.

Demands in Bangalore West take a major hike

The increasing commercial demand in the vicinity of West Bangalore is asking the residential sector to grow and lead the city to a better place.
The Mumbai-Bangalore Industrial Corridor, Greater Peenya Industrial Area, proposed Peripheral Ring Road (PRR) Metro Rail connectivity, Dabaspet Industrial Area, integrated townships along the NICE corridor, all these factors make the west of the city an investment destination. The plots in Bangalore in this region is owned by automotive parts, manufacturing, electrical, electroplating, pharmaceutical, chemical, electronics, building materials, aerospace components, garments, castings, forgings, foundries, and scientific instruments industries.
The whole area is well connected to the plunged road built over Peenya international airport, in the Mysore road. It is also connected to NICE corridor as well as the metro rail network.The well established and renowned market of Yeshwanthpur having a micro market with healthcare, retail and other public infrastructure gives a major push to people to come and live here.
Shrinivas Rao, CEO of APAC, Vestian Global services stated that the major factors that increase the rates of property in Bangalore are the presence of economic complexes and industrial sectors with the perfect physical infrastructure and amazing connectivity with all public convenience nearby. It has been noted that after 2008 this western area of Bangalore was influenced by a major hike in IT and ITeS companies which came and set up their base here. These industrial areas included Kumbalgodu and Bidadi which resulted in their nearby localities like Kengeri to become a popular residential choice for those who are employed in this area or the vicinity. According to reports and databases, Kumbalgodu Industrial Area, Bidadi Industrial Area and Global village IT park, together holds a total number of 80,000 employees. Also, after the rapid metro connectivity in this region, it has become very easy for people to travel and save their working hours. With all these factors in hand, the fact that region is well connected to the NICE Road, Outer Ring Road and Tumkur Road gives the place an additional advantage to grow more property in Bangalore west.
Currently, 79854604-lake_6the development that is being done in this region comprises of apartment projects and plots in Bangalore West. The Kengari residential sectors incorporate a large scale of apartment projects and townships in the mid segment value people. It is thus expected that the annual residential sale growth in this region is 6-8 percent while the rental yeild will be 4 percent.

A good news for Bangalore real estate

Stop worrying more about investing in a building or a land or any property in Bangalore specially those which are close to lakebeds.
The properties owned by builders near these lakebeds were told not to construct their builders as the National Green Tribunal, in an passed order on May 2016 clearly increased the buffer zone of the lakebeds from 30 metres to 75 metres and announced that no construction will be done around the 75 metres zone of the lakebeds. However, now the BBMP has given out a sigh of happiness. They have clarified that those projects which recieved their contrsution approval before May 2016 can resume their construction. These will be only applicable to those who got licened before the NGT order arrived.

BBmp recently issued a circular on 30th March 2017 which came out with the green signal for the buiilders. Commissioner N Manjunath Prasad ordered that the NGT directive will be now not be applicable for site and properties which already secured their plan before the Green Court came out with their new orders and restrictions. This implementation sent to all eight zonal heads has brought out a relief to the real estate sector and is expected to grow the market as well with the increased rates in such locations.

Now the builders are excited and are offering new deals in their flats in Bangalore lakebeds. These areas are now more costlier than ever. The serenity of the lakebeds of Bangalore has always been an ideal place for all the segments of the society and is much desired specially by old people who plan on living their old age in a wonderful environment as same.
Not only flats, but some builders are now planning on moving to lake house projects. They are now applying for permissions for their beautiful projects from the NGT and are expecting great revenues for the real estate market.

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Approval of Bangalore properties to go online

To manage Bangalore’s reputation of the country’s famous IT Hub, the BBMP has come out with a new rule which will be in favor of the technology. To ease the builders who own and want to convert them into a building for residential or office use, the procedure for getting the plan approvals will be done online. This was cut straight to chase the builders won’t have to run to post to seek clarifications. For this work, new executive engineers will be assigned the work of approvals. They will collectively work with zonal town planning officers.
This will be done in lieu of the latest E-Khata system announced in the BBMP budget on Saturday which said to enable the citizens to upload all the required documents and to avail their khatas online itself. Apart from this, the property tax collection which needs to be done will be carried forward by the geographic information system (GIS) in a collection with the Indian Space Research Organisation, according to the chairman of BBMP standing committee, MK Gunashekar (finance and taxation).

A digital survey of the whole Bangalore real estate will be carried out which will include tech parks, malls, and other commercial establishments, as well as the residential market of Bangalore, imageswill be minutely undertaken to ensure accurate evaluation of property tax.

5 reason you should buy a property in Noida

After the utterly clumsy place of the capital region of India, Delhi and the densely overcrowded place for offices, Gurugram people are quite as well left with a choice of Noida. This is the reason that the residential sector of Noida Real estate is highly increasing since the past two decades. Noida is considered as a cheap and easy city to live in provided its easy connectivity to Delhi, Faridabad, Agra, and Haryana.
Noida has been considered as the most affordable place to live in given the high number of affordable flats here. There are many reasons that add to the fact but if we want to name a few we can easily do so by guiding the basic points.
The first one can be the extremely well maintained and thoughtfully built infrastructure. The infrastructure that has built the city is the basic reason for more and more citizens coming here. The excellent infrastructure makes it capable of being the next best thing in the world. The availability of lands for residential, commercial as well as infrastructural facilities is something that makes it top the list leaving Delhi and Mumbai behind.
Second reason is the reputed faces of developers who are eyeing in this place to make their new launches. Builders like Supertech, Unitech, Ansal, Emaar, MGF and now Godrej has made their new launches in Noida and Greater Noida. These flats suffice all the segments of the society and promise to be affordable with the availability of luxury.
Third and the most important reason that helps people to relax and invest in these lands is new rules against Forgery. New and quick rules have now been applied to the forgery cases of land. Earlier, the land disrupts were handled by the court’s jurisdiction which always tends to stretch such cases to a number of years, but now a sigh of relief has approached when all these cases are being handed over to the stamps jurisdiction.
The fourth best reason would be the easy connectivity of Noida to other regions like Delhi, Ghaziabad, Gurgaon, Agra. The major plus point Noida has is the rapid availability of Metro from Delhi to Noida. Also, the ongoing construction of Metro from Delhi till Greater Noida via Noida will add a golden point to all these and make it more convenient for those who travel till Greater Noida and will also decrease the traffic on roads.
The fifth point is for those who have a property in Noida or are living on rent flats in Noida. The major availability of marketplaces throughout Noida makes it very easy and accessible to live here.

New residential projects in North Bangalore

With the high increase in commercial activity in North Banglore region, the demand for residential sector also gets affected. New residential projects are being launched in this area which comprises of both apartments and Luxuroy homes (villas).

Bengaluru provides flats for sale in affordabe prices. The development in this area offers residential spaces for all three budgets; premium, mid range and luxury. Areas like Thanisandra, Yelahanka Doddaballapur, location near airport offers mig segment housing to its buyrers whereas, for luxury living one has to look for available in and arond Hennur Road, Kogilu, and some parts of Thanisandra.
New flats for sale in Hebbal-Yelahanka stretch of Bellary Road, which includes Hebbal and RMV II Stage has luxury apartments in the price range of Rs 8,000-12,000 per sqft. The areas situated beyond Devanahalli till Doddaballapur is very popular as it comprises of a large variety of high-end villa projects and also, plot development projects. The price here ranges between Rs 6,800-12,000 per sqft accumuating an area range of 2,500-7000sqft.
Meanwhile, the plot development projects in this area ranges from Rs 2,150 to 4,000 per sqft. Plots as well as luxury flats in this region are mostly preffered by high net worth individuals and investors due to their ability to serve as good holiday or retirement second home options. Apartments towards Nandi Hills Road are looked at with a keen eye as they range between Rs 7,300-10,00 per sqft. Vijayoura has new flats for sale ranging between 4,500-5,050.

Increasing residential demand in the Silicon Valley of India, Whitefield

As it is known that there is a large workforce employed in the area of Whitefield, and preferring to live in the vicinity, is increasing up the demands for residential options here for the comfort of the employees.
Once known as a secluded area of Bangalore to the Silicon Valley of India, Whitefield’s story was shaped primarily by the IT Hub revolution that changed the sleepy landscape with Asia’s first tech park which rose up in 1994.
The excellent development that took place in Whitefield and the EPIP zone have seen over the years seems like a page of a fictional book with a perfect ending. Mammoth towers in glass and chrome stand tall amidst natural greenery which has been long preserved by the developers of these MNC acquiring most of the Bangalore properties especially in Whitefield. Many hitherto heavy manufacturing factories have given a big hand to making this a wonderful place with a lot of infrastructural possibilities and residential flats in Bangalore.
It is no wonder that after all these factors these localities in the vicinity of these ultra facilitated tech parks have largely begun to mushroom into elite gated communities of residential buildings. Villas the high priority choice by the people who want to live here and work in these high-end vicinity of business parks.
While the ITPB has singularly driven the demand for residential property options in its vicinity, the other tech parks and business parks in the EPIP zone too have drawn a high demand for housing options ranging from mid-segment apartments and high-end homes enclosed within well-appointed gated enclaves, to villas and plots.
A member of the committee, Jain has stated that Whitefield, Electronics City, and the EPIP zone was a major initiative taken by the government to create the place into something better which eventually turned out to be called as the Silicon Valley of India with a number of reputed Multi Nationals setting up their base here. This is also increased the demand for high-end flats and villas by the people who come here every year from all over the country to earn their lavish living.

Hyderabad, a new commercial destination

Hyderabad is now becoming the new investment destination for the commercial property developers already based in Bengaluru. This is the time when the city’s real estate market is on a revival mode after almost five years of political ups and downs in the city.
Well developed companies such as DivyaSree Developers, Embassy, Salarpuria Sattva, and RMZ Corp have successfully built or still are in the process of building a noticeable commercial portfolio in the city. This, along with Bengaluru, which is also a home to some of the largest IT companies in the world, including Microsoft, Oracle, and Uber. However, the rentals of these cities are still not as high as other cities and therefore the companies are keenly looking at this as a growth trajectory.
As it is mostly seen, the existing customers of the city will be now looking in other cities as it provides them with more options and a higher scale for a better business. This However will result in the same rental prices of Hyderabad commercial property as it is for Bengaluru. Mike Holland, the CEO of Embassy Office Parks said that it can be strongly seen that the Hyderabad infrastructure will grow immensely after the political turmoils in Bengaluru.

Delhi Government comes up with Fresh Directive on Sale of Properties

Government of Delhi issued a fresh directive to the revenue department asking it to allow sale and purchase of immovable properties only through proper sale and not allow any such transactions by way of General Power of Attorney.

The direction issued by Divisional Commissioner Vijay Dev came as registration of properties at 13 sub-registrar offices across the city had slowed down drastically due to confusion on the issue following issuance of an advisory last month by the government clamping down on property transaction through GPA. “In today’s direction, the government has asked all concerned officials to strictly comply with the Supreme Court order on the issue. The order has been issued to remove the confusion,” said an official.

The government had put restrictions on GPA as a mode of property transfer following the apex court order on October 12 last year but such transactions had been taking place despite the order, prompting the government to issue the advisory. Following the advisory, registration of properties has come down at the sub-registrar offices.

The Supreme Court had on October 12 last year ruled that sale transactions carried out in the name of GPA will have no legal sanctity and immovable property can be sold or transferred only through registered deeds.

Anand Rathi and Knight Frank Eye the Second Realty Fund

Anand Rathi Financial Services and property consultancy Knight Frank India are planning to launch their second real estate fund by end of this months and looking to raise around Rs 500 crore (~$100 million), sources close to the development told VCCircle. Unlike its peers who are hitting foreign shores to raise new funds, the joint fund rental yield and appreciation portfolio (RYAP) fund will be raised from the domestic market.  Like its predecessor, it will invest in commercial assets in tier I cities which include Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, National Capital Region (NCR) and Chennai.

The fund would be targeting returns of 10-12 per cent from its investments and expects to stay invested in an asset for four-five years. A senior executive of the joint venture fund house who did not wish to be identified, said, “We are waiting for final Alternate Investment Fund (AIF) guidelines as right now there is no clarity on registration of funds and other norms. Once we have clarity on the same which we are expecting by mid-May we will register and start our fund raising process.”

In April 2, markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had unveiled its final norms to regulate AIF’s in the country. Fund managers expect the detailed guidelines to be issued in the next two weeks.

Knight Frank India and Anand Rathi Financial Services had joined hands two years ago to raise Rs 225 crore rental yield fund. It has invested Rs 135 crore from the existing fund in two projects including Hub town Ltd’s commercial project in Mumbai and Cerebrum IT park development by Pune-based Kumar Urban Development Ltd.

What Housing when India’s Realty Sector Data is an Opaque House

The Other day, I was reading a blog entry about housing prices and interest rates on the website of The Economist magazine. The data on which the blog was based included a long (20+ years) history of housing prices in the UK and the US. In the US, for example, the house price index with a base of 100 in 1988 had risen to a peak of about 320 in 2006 and is now down to about 220. In the UK, a similar index started at 100 in 1995, hit about 370 in 2007 but is down only to 320 yet. The post went on to examine why US housing prices have crashed so much more than the UK.
In India, no matter how much you want to, you cannot do any analysis like this because the data does not exist. Despite the centrality of real estate prices in the economy, as well as in the lives of people, these are an almost completely opaque part of the Indian economy. This is all the more galling because with financial savings less developed than the western countries, real estate (along with gold) is a much bigger part of people’s savings.

Whether you are a researcher who needs a couple of decades worth of broad data, or an individual who needs a price map of a particular kind of unit across an area, you are pretty much on your own. This lack of quality information has huge consequences. In any kind of exchange, it skews the advantage towards the larger and more organised side. As an individual, whether you are buying or selling, you’ll start with a scramble for information and will eventually have to make do with whatever is handed to you by people who are on the opposite side.

While the broader picture might eventually become clearer when the National Housing Bank’s Residex index builds up a long enough history, individuals will probably be faced with an information disadvantage unless someone has some ideas about filling this gap.

DLF gains profit much after Goldman Sachs upgrade

Reuters Market Eye – India’s biggest real estate developer DLF (DLF.NS) rose 3.2 percent to 188.10 rupees after Goldman Sachs upgraded its rating on the stock to “buy” from “neutral” and raised its 12-month target price to 264 rupees from 252 rupees.

Goldman cited a pickup in residential launches, a recovery in commercial property, easing interest rates, and improved outlooks for asset sales as well as for operating/financial leverage as reasons for upgrade.

DLF’s share price is down 0.5 percent for 2012 while the BSE Sensex is up about 11 percent in the same period.

The upgrade has come close on the heels of DLF’s removal from the Sensex, which will come into effect from June 11.

India: ICICI Bank eyes growth after strong Q4

ICICI Bank, India’s No. 2 lender, posted on Friday a larger-than-expected 31 percent rise in quarterly profit and forecast a higher growth rate for domestic loans and stable asset quality for the coming year.

Loan demand in India is expected to pick up after the central bank last week cut its benchmark lending rate for the first time in three years to help revive sagging economic growth. The Reserve Bank of India has projected loan growth for Indian banks for fiscal year 2013 at 17 percent against 16 percent in the previous year.

ICICI expects its domestic loans to grow 20 percent in the year that began in April from 17 percent last year, driven by demand from companies for working capital, home and car loans, Chief Executive Chanda Kochhar told reporters.

“These numbers may give us comfort to keep what we have (but) we don’t have any particular plans to increase our stakes. We have concerns about the India story in general,” said Olsson Jan-Olov, portfolio manager of Carnegie Emerging Markets at Sweden, which owns ICICI shares.

“We have been a little hesitant towards increasing positions in India due to the overriding political and macro economic situation.” Earlier this week, Standard & Poor’s cut India’s credit rating outlook to negative from stable on hefty fiscal and current account deficits and political paralysis in Asia’s third-largest economy.

The negative outlook jeopardises India’s long-term rating of BBB-, the lowest investment grade rating. Indian banks are actively easing terms on loans for companies, as high interest rates and an economic slowdown has hurt the ability of some to repay loans on time. Power, textile, aviation, construction and real estate are the hardest hit sectors.

ICICI, which is also listed in New York and competes with State Bank of India and HDFC Bank, sees a “very small” and “minimal” pipeline for corporate debt restructurings, Kochhar said.

Commercial Realty Offers Big Opportunities in Mumbai

The number of high net worth investors (HNIs) and corporates seriously looking to invest in Indian office space has increased manifold in the last few years. Mumbai continues as India’s numerous office space investment destination, with companies from all over the world unerringly zeroing in on the financial capital.

As South Asia’s only true financial hub, Mumbai is among India’s best places to invest in commercial real estate. In times of global economic uncertainty, investors flock to markets that have consistently proved their long-term stability and fundamentals.

In a scenario wherein institutional investors are showing reduced preference for commercial real estate in their portfolios, Mumbai continues to present HNI and corporate investors with myriad growth opportunities in office properties. However, the multitude of options also gives many enthusiastic investors heartburn -where on Mumbai’s vast and complex map are the low-risk/high returns locations?

Today, Mumbai as a city for commercial space investment reveals a high rate of vacancies in many locations. The rental yields in these micro-locations are expected to decrease marginally over the next 12 months.

While this seems to present a depressing scenario on the surface, the fact is that we are now looking at the bottom of the curve. In other words, these markets are expected to bottom out over the next one year and will consequently start to move up again. These locations have significant long-term capital value appreciation potential, and well-informed investors are keeping a close eye on them.

Report: DLF in talks to sell Mumbai land

DLF, India’s top-listed realtor, is in talks with three Mumbai-based real estate companies — Lodha Developers, Runwal Group and Sheth Creators, to sell a piece of land in central Mumbai, according to a report on Friday.

While DLF is seeking a valuation of 30 billion rupees ($571 million) for the 6.8 hectare property, the potential buyers are negotiating at between 20 billion and 22 billion rupees, the newspaper said, citing an unnamed person.

“Even as all the parties had talks with DLF, the developer is yet to make up its mind, as it is expecting higher valuations,” it quoted the person as saying.

DLF bought the land for 7.02 billion rupees in 2005 from state-owned National Textile Corporation.

Abhisheck Lodha, managing director of Lodha Developers, said the company was not in talks with DLF while an executive at Runwal group also responded in the negative, the paper said.

DLF does not comment on market speculation, the company’s spokesman told.

Affordable Housing Investors finds RBI Rate Cut a Boon

The recent move by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in its annual Credit Policy has given some hope for investors in the affordable housing segment. This is being seen as a positive development for the overall property market. While investors remain cautious and wait for banks to announce the lowering of interest rates, realtors are optimistic of the scenario, however, hoping that inflation remains under check. “While the rate cut of 50 basis points is definitely a ray of hope, it does not dispel the shadows nearly as much as may be initially supposed. It should be borne in mind that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has hiked interest rates 13 times between March 2010 and October 2011,” says Om Ahuja, CEO – Residential Services, Jones Lang LaSalle India.

“While this is understandable, given the on-going concerns over inflation and liquidity in the market, the spate of rate hikes has created a compounded problem for the residential real estate sector. The series of hikes in the past have also affected the price that builders put on their properties, since their own costs of borrowing have increased. It is unlikely that property prices will come down because of this rate cut. In fact, it is very likely that there will be an upward bias on property rates because of the anticipated improvement in sentiments of buyers who have so far been sitting on the fence, waiting for some signals of relief,” adds Ahuja. Shrinivas Rao, CEO, Vestian Global Workplace Solutions says the reduction in repo rate will boost economic growth and improve business sentiments which in turn will strengthen buying activity. However, the impact will vary across sectors depending on implementation of the cut by leading banks.

“Leading lenders are likely to cut interest rates on deposits and loans. Home loans are likely to turn cheaper. For instance, a 25 basis point cut could lower home loan EMIs by Rs 16 per Rs 1 lakh. A cut in the repo rate will also reduce the interest on commercial loans which in turn will favour developers to avail cheaper loans, thereby providing traction to real estate activity. Cheaper loan rates are expected to attract more end-users, impacting the residential sales positively,” he says.

With banks offering loans at cheaper rates, developers are likely to prefer the bank loans as against private equity funds. However, an increase in market demand in the short term will drive capital values, thereby benefitting retail investors, adds Rao. According to Ganesh Vasudevan, Vice President and Business Head, IndiaProperty, the cut of 50 basis points by the RBI is a move that will have a positive effect on the real estate segment.

$20Mn invested in Hallmark Infrastructure by Paracor Capital

Paracor Capital has invested $20Mn in two residential projects of Chennai-based real estate developer Hallmark Infrastructure. Both these projects are located opposite Mahindra World City on GST Road in New Chennai, and involve a development of 0.8 mn sq ft.

Hallmark Infrastructure was established in 1998 and it became Hallmark Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd in 2005. It is a diversified group based in Chennai with presence in infrastructure projects, IT parks, townships, hospitality and serviced apartments.

Paracor Capital Advisors is the Indian advisor to two Mauritius based investment companies – Paracor India Investments Limited, Mauritius, which focuses on private equity transactions and Madison India Real Estate Fund Limited, Mauritius which focuses on real estate and hospitality investments.

This is Paracor’s fifth Indian real estate investment. Last year, it invested R55Cr for an 8% stake in Marvel Landmarks Pvt. Ltd, a realty firm backed by global asset managers Och-Ziff Capital Management Group. Other real estate investments include Arun Excello Homes, Daman Hospitality and Sabari Inn.

This space has seen 12 investments amounting to $477Mn across 10 deals with disclosed values during the March quarter. The largest PE-realty investment announced during the first quarter of this year was GIC’s $100Mn investment in a Godrej Properties office project in Mumbai’s Bandra Kurla Complex-the only deal over $25Mn reported during the period.

Other deals in the sector include ASK Property Advisors R40Cr investment in Paranjape Schemes’ residential project in Pune and Future Capital’s investment in Rustomjee Group’s project.

Economy and Realty for the Month of April 2012

Healthy office space absorption in 2011-2012 inspite of slowdown in GDP, However 2012-13 seems bleak.

Currently, the top seven cities of India that is Mumbai, National Capital Region, Bangalore, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad and Kolkata together occupy 389 mn sq.ft of Grade-A office space. During 2010-11, a total of 38 mn sq.ft of new space was constructed in the top seven cities and it was 37 mn sq. ft during 2011-12. Office space absorption in India during 2011-12 was merely 2% lower than 2010-11 despite GDP growth slowing down from 8.4% to 6.9% during the same period. This is in sharp contrast to the popular belief that 2011-12 was a dull year for office market in terms of absorption. Healthy absorption rate ensured a drop in vacancy level to 21% by the end of Q4 2011-12 from 27% in Q4 2009-10.

Share of Banking & IT sector falls in absorption while manufacturing sector has witnessed an increasing trend over the last two years and contributed 19% in total absorption during 2011-12, higher from 13% in 2010-11. GDP growth of service segment is estimated to grow at 8.8% during 2012-13, much higher than industry segment growth of 6%. Absorption of space during 2012-13 is expected to be considerably lower than the previous two years and this will make it all the more challenging for developers to maintain existing levels of rent.

However, the latest move by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) of reducing the repo and reverse repo rate by 50 basis points (bps) each could provide the much needed impetus to the economy and help in reviewing the demand scenario for office space in the coming quarters.

2012 is a Tougher Year for Fund Raising

Due to global issues, liquidity is becoming a problem. Though the phase is temporarily, the concern cannot be ruled out. Indian real estate sector is banking on the fact that change will take place and market will come out of the situation. The fact of the matter is that next 12 months and in fact 2012, does not look too bright for the sector.

The global debt worries have led to more and more uncertainty. In the last few months, the sector has been plagued by a potential liquidity squeeze. The situation is very unsettling and the fear is that we might end up looking at the year 2008 situation. It is certain that banks will get into selective lending with more strict verifications. In 2012, we are expecting that interest rates might get stabilized but disbursal of home loans will come down.

As RBI has been steadily increasing interest rates, debt for developers is becoming expensive. Also many banks are right now not keen to lend to real estate projects. Due to global uncertainty even private equity is cautious of investing in India. In fact, companies have started looking at alternative routes of fund raising. And many a deals are being done as structured debt deals hiding behind the facade of an equity structure.

In structured debt deals, the companies—investor and investee—sign two agreements. In the publicly announced agreement the investor—a PE or a VC fund—buys an equity stake in the company; and in the second contract they have buyback clause, which allows investee company to buy back its shares from the PE/VC fund at a price that will give the fund a return of about 20% per annum over the duration of the investment.

All signs currently suggest that 2012 would not be an easy year. As debt becomes more expensive and PE funds find it difficult to deploy cash due to global economic conditions, we would see higher number of structured deals taking place in 2012. Though these structured deals are being done, they have their share of problems. The problem is when the side-contracts are not honoured.

Realty Industry Feels Rate Cut as Benefit for All

The interest rate sensitive realty industry Tuesday welcomed the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) decision to cut key lending rates by 50 basis points, and felt the move will boost builders’ and home loan customers’ sentiments alike.

“For the real estate in particular, this is indeed a welcome step by RBI. While the sector was already reeling under the pressures of high interest rates, this will allow banks to lower down the interest rates significantly. Both buyers and developers shall get benefitted from this,” said Pradeep Jain, chairman, Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Association of India (CREDAI).

Home loan buyers are currently paying a higher rate of interest in the range of 11.50-13 percent on floating basis. Customers, who had earlier opted for dual rate scheme and now just exhausted their fixed tenure rate, are paying the same rate of interest.

Other industry players like Unitech and real estate consultancy firm Cushman & Wakefield also welcomed the move, which they said would boost business confidence.

“This development will have a positive impact across the economy and particularly in the real-estate industry. Not only will the cost of borrowing rationalize, this reduction will also provide an impetus to growth and enhance business-confidence,” said Ajay Chandra, managing director, Unitech.

Cushman & Wakefield India said that the banks are expected to pass on the reduction in interest rates to consumers, which will provide a positive boost to market sentiments especially in the residential sales markets.

“We expect to witness some pickup in the volume of sales transactions. For the whole of last year, end buyers had to defer their purchase decisions as they were facing the double-edged sword of rising interest rates and stubborn price levels,” said Anurag Mathur, managing director, Cushman & Wakefield.

The RBI’s announcement also buoyed the BSE Realty index which grew by 32.50 points at 1,813.97 points around 2:50 p.m. Stocks of realty industry players also surged with DLF’s scrip growing by 3.75 points or 1.88 percent at 203.25 points.

Indian Realty Sector growing very Fast

The real estate industry is expected to reach US $180 billion by 2020, said analysts and industry experts at a seminar organised in the city.

As part of the Management Development programme, the students of the Acharya Bangalore B School attended a three-day seminar on Real Estate Management that started on Thursday.

Realtors and analysts from the field also attended the seminar to provide the students with future prospects and various professional options.

Presenting a paper on ‘Internet and Real Estate’, Business Head of 99Acres.com, Vineet Singh said, “As per reports by real estate intelligence firms, India is ranked as the fifth most attractive destination for future real estate investments in a list topped by China. The Indian real estate industry is expected to reach US $180 billion by 2020. This is a good platform to involve both academia and industry to facilitate dual growth and understanding. We get to know what the emerging new talent holds and they learn about the industry perspective.”

Industry experts from Brigade Group, Sobha Developers and other leading real estate organisations attended the event to train the students. “I’ve always had an interest in this industry as my family deals with real estate. But at this seminar I could ask a few basic questions and get industry relevant answers,” said Niharika Singh, a student.

Sahara, ICICI, Bhushan Steel in race to buy Parsvnath’s Connaught Place land.

Sahara Group, ICICI Bank, Bhushan Steel, Bharti Realty, Red Fort Capital and Shri Lal Mahal are understood to be in the race among others to acquire Parsvnath Developers’ 1.18 acre of prime commercial land near Connaught Place in the National Capital.

In January, Parsvnath had announced plans to monetise the KG Marg land, which it had bought for Rs 200 crore in 2008. Parsvnath, which is eyeing about Rs 700 crore from sale of this land, got the building plan approved from local authority last week and potential buyer can start construction on the land immediately after the deal, sources said.

“The first round of bidding and due diligence have been already completed. The process will be expedited now as the company was waiting for the building plans approvals before it starts negotiation with potential buyer,” a source, who is involved in the process, said. Sahara Group, ICICI Bank, Bhushan Steel, Bharti Realty, private equity firm Red Fort Capital, rice company Shri Lal Mahal and one leading realty firm from NCR have shown interest in buying this land, sources said, adding that Parsvnath had got bids up to about Rs 700 crore in the first round of bidding.

When contacted, Parsvnath Developers Chairman Pradeep Jain said: “The process for sale of this land is on. We cannot comment any further.” Property consultant Jones Lang LaSalle India is helping Parsvnath in this deal. The built-up area allowed on this prime land is about 1.5 lakh sq ft with 300 car parking. Realty consultant said that prime office buildings near CP are currently commanding a monthly rental of 350-400 per sq ft.

Although Jain did not give any timeline for completion of this transaction, sources said that the deal could be closed in this quarter. Parsvnath has a net debt of about Rs 1,200 crore and plans to reduce it to about Rs 500 crore by utilising the proceeds from sale of this prime property. The company has two housing projects and several shopping malls at metro stations in the National Capital. It is setting up an office building near Gole Market here with an investment of Rs 300 crore.

That apart, Parsvnath had bought in 2010 a 38 acre of land near Sarai Rohilla from the Railways for Rs 1,651 crore, making it the second biggest land deal in Delhi. The company, in partnership with Red Fort Capital, plans to provide luxury housing and commercial space in this project. Parsvnath, which has a land bank of about 200 million sq ft across the country, had received private equity funding from Sun Apollo and JP Morgan in some other projects in NCR.

 

 

Economy and Realty for the Month of March 2012.

The report highlights the revised service tax and its impact on the consumers, the deduction in TDS and the current scenario of the External Commercial Borrowing (ECB) apart from its emphasis on the Chennai Realty Market.

Following are the key takeaways of the report:

– Chennai leads the market in terms of number of units under construction accounting for 68% of the total number of units coming up in the city, followed by the western region with 27%.

– Chennai is slated to witness the infusion of around 67500 residential units in the forthcoming three years.

– During 2011, the highest price rise was observed in the central areas of the city, to the tune of around10-18%.

– According to a United Nations study, Chennai has a deficit of around 60000 housing units. About 6000 of them are in the high income group segment, 12000 in the middle income group and 18000 in the low income group.

In March,India Inc. invested $2.7 bn overseas.

Overseas investments by Indian companies stood at USD 2.77 billion in March, up 37.6 percent over the previous month, with Binani Industries, Mercator Lines, HCL Technologies, Varun Shipping, Hexaware Technologies, and Tata Steel emerging as major investors.

As many as 489 overseas investment transactions were carried out by various companies in March, as per the Reserve Bank data released Wednesday. Binani Industries invested a total of USD 323.34 million in its two wholly-owned subsidiaries based in Luxembourg and the US that are involved in financial, real estate and manufacturing services.

Mercator Lines, which is into agriculture and mining, through its joint venture-Mercator Offshore PTE- invested USD 150.15 million in Singapore during the month, it said. ABG Shipyard, through its wholly-owned subsidiary invested USD 80 million in Singapore.

HCL Technologies, India’s fourth largest software exporter, invested USD 60 million in Bermuda through its wholly owned subsidiary for providing financial, insurance and real estate solutions.
Likewise, Varun Shipping which is into transport, storage and communication business invested USD 60 million via its JV in Cyprus.

Hexaware Technologies invested USD 38.7 million through its wholly-owned subsidiary in Germany to provide financial, insurance, real estate solutions, it said. Tata Steel invested USD 35.5 million in Singapore through its wholly-owned unit, it said.