Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Why Home insurance is extremely important in India?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Jammu and Kashmir floods have been devastating to say the least. Many people have lost their lives. Businesses including restaurants, Shikaras, tourism, small workshops have been razed. Agricultural land has been eroded. Houses including the contents of a household have been damaged. The floods in Jammu and Kashmir have been the worst in over half a century.

Well, there could be man-made reasons such as aggressive construction, & lax regulations for this great disaster, however, one cannot take away the fact that it was a horrendous natural disaster partly assisted by man-made actions.

The focus of the state and central government is to rescue the people and then focus on relief work. We must congratulate Armed forces for their stupendous work for saving Thousands of lives. Food is being provided to the flood victims, Medicare facilities have been augmented.

However, to bring back the normalcy would take months, maybe year or two. The government has announced relief packages including financial assistance. However, one wonders, what will happen to the damaged houses and the contents of the houses? Will these be recovered? In such a scenario, home insurance would have been of great help. We are not sure, if home insurance was a common practice in Jammu and Kashmir.

Home insurance is extremely useful for people living in areas that are prone to the risks of floods, earthquakes or burglaries?

Home insurance can cover losses to the structure and contents of one’s home from any natural or man-made calamity. The disasters that can be insured against are fire, earthquakes, storms, cyclones, tempests, tornadoes, hurricanes, floods or inundation, lightning strike, explosion, landslides, impact by vehicles or aircraft, and bursting or overflowing of water tanks and pipes. However, care needs to be taken that only the cost of structure is insured and not the cost of land.



Mainly two types of home insurance policies are available in India:

  • Buildings Insurance

Insuring the building or building structure is important since it protects the policy holder against inevitable losses in case the insured building is destroyed or debilitated in any natural or man-made calamities.


  • Content Insurance

Contents insurance under home insurance plans includes protection to movable goods, possessions or contents in the house; anything that is not a fixed part of the home, for example appliances, electronic goods, furniture and clothing etc.


Home Insurance can be extremely useful for an NRI who is living far away from his/her property. In case of an NRI, his/her property is usually managed by a Property Management Company who specializes in NRI Property Management Services and such companies can advise an NRI to opt for home insurance.

Find below the detailed info about Home insurance in India including the claim process, benefits of home insurance, and companies that offer home insurance in India.




Have any Questions?

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

What is the impact of Interest (Repo) rates on Housing & Housing Prices Appreciation in various cities in India? Is there any direct relationship?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Ok, everyone including the real estate developers, builders’ apex bodies such as CREDAI, brokerage houses, and other related industries are shouting from the roof tops for interest rate cuts to revive the demand in realty sector. Every time there is a review of monetary policy by RBI, numerous articles in leading newspapers are published on how the rate cuts can boost demand and bring back fence sitting customers in investing in real estate in India. However, RBI has resisted such calls and instead has focused on bringing down the inflation. Now that, inflation has come down, can we expect rate cuts? Mr. Raghuram Rajan knows it best. Let’s leave it to him and his team at RBI.

But, let’s explore, is there any merit in the builder’s argument for reducing the interest rates? Will rate cuts boost demand?

For that, we need to examine the housing price appreciation in various cities across India and the impact of repo rates on housing price appreciation.

Let’s go one by one.


  • Appreciation in Housing prices across India

As can be seen from below graph, the pace of housing price appreciation has slowed down since 2010. What does it suggest? Well, it suggests, that demand has been falling gradually since 2010. End-users or investors are postponing their decision to invest in real estate. Assuming influx of new housing supply to be constant from 2010 to 2014.




  • Increase in repo rates

Repo rates have increased from 5% in March 2010 to 8% now. Repo rates are rates at which RBI (central bank) lends money to banks or housing finance companies.




  • Impact of increase in repo rates on housing price appreciation

This graph tells the whole story. As the repo rates started moving up from 2010 to 2014, the housing price appreciation started to come down. In 2010, most cities witnessed substantial appreciation in housing prices with Bangalore, Ahmadabad, Kolkata, Mumbai, and Chennai appreciated upwards of 30%. Whereas in 2014, the highest price appreciation was witnessed in Pune at mere 3.88%.




  • Conclusion

While rate cuts will certainly bring back customers to market and we may see improved activity in real estate investment. However, just like demand waned gradually from 2010 to 2014, similarly, demand will pick up gradually and we may see the full potential somewhere in 2017.



Have any Questions?

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Developers offer discounts to encourage the purchase of dream homes

Buying a house can be a challenging decision for many. After all, it involves investing your hard-earned money. People get finicky when it comes to purchasing their dream home as they expect the best amenities and facilities that are worth their investment. There have been many cases where people go house hunting for apartments in Bannerghatta road and other such places in the south, but return disappointed because of the expensive property prices. Now, you no longer have to wait for the prices to drop. Your dream home can be well within your reach as real estate developers are offering lucrative discounts for apartments and flats for sale in Bannerghatta road.

  • The slowdown in the housing industry

Unlike earlier times, potential house buyers have plenty of choices available now. Builders and brokers are willing to negotiate better deals, which wasn’t an option some time back. Working professionals, especially those from the IT sector, are ready to purchase a second home and buy apartments on Bannerghatta Road, Bengaluru, because of the declining prices. There are a large number of people who are unable to purchase their dream homes because of the weak economy. But, simultaneously, there is also a significant section of the population who is grabbing the discounted offers introduced by real estate developers. With changing times, developers are now accepting requests from buyers and providing benefits. The price corrections have already taken place in the different sub-markets, depending on the supply and demand dynamics.



  • Rise of the buyer’s market

Builders need to keep the cash flow steady. For this reason, they are willing to provide discounts when they are close to finishing the inventory. They are enthusiastic to provide schemes rather than turning away a customer. The pre-launches are occurring at aggressive prices. Due to the rising debt, unsold inventory, and slow new home sales, builders are ready to negotiate with potential buyers. The end-user can bargain the best deals as the quoted prices remain stagnant. To make things better, the Reserve Bank of India has started offering home loans at low-interest rates. In fact, due to the recent RBI rate cuts, banks have been asked to reduce their base rate, which can substantially decrease the cost of home loans. Industry experts and financial advisers believe that now is the right time to buy flats for sale in Bannerghatta road, Bangalore.



  • Introduction of innovative offers and schemes

There are several real estate developers that are offering payment plans for possession. Such programs require individuals to pay 2 percent at the time of booking and take a loan for 80 percent. The EMI will be borne by the builder. After six months, the cost has to be paid, and the final 10 percent is due at the time of possession. Similar schemes with payment options ranging from 30-65-5 to 30-70 and 30-40-30 are designed to attract buyers. Be it cities such as Hyderabad and Chennai or apartments in Bannerghatta Road, Bangalore, developers are coming up with large projects. Real estate analysts believe that people expect an increase in disposable incomes once the economic indicators improve, and the interest rates reduce. As property prices continue to remain stagnant, this combination works as an excellent opportunity to potential home buyers and investors.

When it comes to luxurious properties, developers are ready to sit across the table and negotiate the payment scheme. So, you can choose to buy your dream home by purchasing apartments in Bannerghatta road, keeping in mind the current market conditions and flexible payment options.

This is a guest post by Deepak Yewle

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Can an NRI Take Personal Loan in India?

Yes, NRI’s can take personal loans in India. The NRI personal loans are accessible from various banks in India. No matter what purpose is the loan offer, there are many prominent banks that offer personal loans to NRIs against fixed deposits while private part banks give NRI personal loans that might be unbound. In fact, the personal loans for NRIs are a decent alternative to get speedy financing for diverse prerequisites.

The NRI personal loans are intended to help Indians who are living abroad to profit from the advantages of a personal loan in India. Some of the most famous banks which provide loans for NRI are State Bank of India, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Canara Bank, Axis Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Citibank, etc.


1. Eligibility: 

  • There are some requirements an NRI is supposed to meet in order to qualify the process of getting a loan. They are:
  • The applicant applying for the loan should be a citizen of India.
  • The applicant must also be at least 21 years of age.
  • It is important for the applicant to be a professional with a consistent salary or to run a business and be self employed.
  • The salary or the income of the applicant should be enough to qualify for the loan.
  • A number of documents which are required to be submitted as a formality.


In addition to all these things, it is possible that there may be some additional criteria dependent on the bank rules. The best to gain a better understanding of all the prerequisites is to go through the website of the bank you’ve chosen and be clear about everything that is required to get a personal loan.


2. Documentation: 

  • Coming to the documents required for NRI loans, the process is pretty simple to get any other personal loan. Salary details and KYC details need to be shown while applying for a loan. If a person is an NRI then reports which affirm the residential status are also important. Other important things are a passport and a VISA of the country the candidate is living in currently. In addition to all these documents, some other important documents are:
  • A photocopy of passport and VISA of the candidate. 
  • A certificate of salary determining the name, date of joining, designation and compensation details in English. 
  • Bank statements of both domestic and International banks throughout the previous half year. 
  • In the event that the candidate isn't accessible in India when the application of loan is submitted, at that point a General Power of Attorney should properly bore witness from the Indian office of the NRI's occupant nation. In the event that the candidate is available in India, the Power of Attorney can be privately legally approved. 
  • A duplicate copy of the appointment letter of NRI just as the contract.


You might be required to present some extra documents, so the best approach is to recheck the formalities of the bank that you have chosen for a personal loan.

3. Personal loans for NRIs: 

There are many banks in India that offer both rupee and foreign currency personal loans to NRIs who have FCNR or NRE term accounts. These personal loans are accessible against the sum in the FCNR or NRE accounts at highly competitive international rates. The loans are usually accessible up to 90% of the sum in the account with each bank having its own maximum limit on personal loan amounts.

4. Some highlights of personal loans are: 

  • The NRI loans have a wide scope of highlights as talked about below:
  • The NRI loans are actually accessible for a higher amount of money. 
  • The rates of interest involved in these loans are pretty competitive.
  • Time frame involved in the reimbursement of these loans ranges between one year to as long as five years.
  • An NRI can get a loan to fulfill almost any purpose.


5. Advantages of NRI loans:

  • The NRI personal loans offer many advantages of quick financing and many other things, for example,
  • Simple financing for individual credit prerequisites. 
  • The loans can be obtained from many other banks of your choice. Each bank has its own rules and advantages.
  • Extremely simple documentation and the application process. 
  • Bother free and quick preparing of all the important applications. 
  • The loans are accessible for both the salaried employees and people who are self employed.

This is a guest post by Shipra Aggarwal

Monday, January 21, 2019

Taxation aspects for an NRI, PIO, or a Foreigner for buying an immovable Property in India

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Buying a property has tax implications. If a property is meant for income generation, then one has to pay income tax in addition to property tax, service tax, Capital Gains Tax, and wealth tax. Tax guidelines vary from state to state in India. A typical resident of India who has invested in property has resources and time to adhere to taxation aspects.

However, an NRI or PIO or a foreigner can find it cumbersome to adhere to taxation aspects of buying an immovable property in India. What are the various kinds of taxes, what is the definition of NRI or PIO as per income tax act, and what are the various tax exemptions? These are some of the questions a Non Resident Indian (NRI), Person of Indian Origin (PIO), or a foreigner will be confronted with. Here we present the detailed paper for taxation aspects for an NRI, PIO, and Foreigner for buying an immovable property in India:

Monday, January 14, 2019

What could be the causes of Realty Project delays? And what can real estate developers do to correct this issue?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Take any newspaper, or online forum, or discussions among stakeholders within the property circle, one would notice that project delays have become the endless talking point with no solution to it. There seems to be no dawn for this darkness which has engulfed the entire real estate spectrum. Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Bangalore, Kochi, Hyderabad, Gurgaon, Noida, Greater Noida, Kolkata, Chandigarh, and other parts of the country continuously witness rising cases of project delays by real estate developers. A middle class home buyer suffers the double whammy of paying the rent as well as EMI (Equated Monthly Installment). On top of that, a home buyer whose energies should have gone towards his/her career progress or personal fulfillments is now consumed by this endless struggle to get the dream home. What a pity? People are nation’s best asset and when those assets are put to use in unproductive ways, then it certainly hampers growth and creativity.

Recently, buyers of ‘Unitech The Residences Project in Gurgaon’ were at the project site to protest against the delay.

“We are exploring the option of moving the High Court and approaching the CCI, apart from writing letters to the Prime Minister, the promoters of Unitech and agencies such as SEBI for intervention and investigation in the matter,” Vikram Bishnoi, President of the Unitech Residences Apartment Buyers’ Association, told BusinessLine.

Similarly, buyers of ‘Emaar MGF’s Palm Drive project in Gurgaon’ were seen demonstrating against the project delay. This project was launched in end of 2007 and delivery was supposed to be made in December 2010. However, the project has not been delivered yet. Builder says they will start delivering the project this year.

Similar cases have been witnessed across the country and as per the CCI (Competition Commission of India) records, biased builder-buyer agreement topped the list of complaints to CCI followed by complaints for project delays.


So, what could be the reasons for realty project delays? Let’s look at from the builder’s point of view as well:


  • Multiple approvals
First thing first, real estate development is a detailed and long process. A builder has to seek various permissions and approvals from the relevant authorities to launch, develop, and complete the project.

To name a few, a real estate developer has to seek approvals/permissions from National Highway Authority of India (NHAI), fire department, pollution department, ministry of environment, electricity department, Airports Authority of India, Ministry of Labor, Ministry of Mines, Central Ground Water Board, Directorate General Civil Aviation among many other sub-departments. It is widely believed that all in all, a builder has to seek a minimum of 40 to 60 approvals depending on the state he/she is operating in.

And it takes time to seek these many approvals, sometimes 2-3 years. Is it an ideal scenario? No, certainly not, and that is why builders are demanding for a single window clearance system. With single window clearance system, costs of projects can be brought down by whopping 20%.

  • Manpower shortages
Real estate is a capital and labor intensive business. Labor shortage is one major issue which impacts the timely delivery of a housing project. In recent times, labor wages have gone up and despite that there is paucity of skilled labor in the market. To counter this, many builders have incorporated pre-fabricated construction technologies. However, this has been restricted to large developers with access to funds and resources to set up such facilities.

  • Lack of funds
Lack of funds is also a major issue in timely completion of a project. With tight monetary policy, cost of funds go up and therefore, a builder explores various options to raise funds by way of underwriting, loans, customer payments, Private Equity money, etc.

  • Lack of demand for the project
Sometimes, demand for the project is rather lackluster. Last 2 years have witnessed low demand for housing and therefore a builder who launched the project 2 years ago is stuck in no man’s land because on one hand monetary policy is tight and on another hand home sales have dropped. This has dried up the funds for the development of the project.

  • Funds diversion to other projects or land deals
Not all of these projects are delayed because of external factors. Many a times, builders divert customer payments to acquire new land parcels for future expansion. To overcome this, Government of India has come up with Real Estate Regulatory Bill which will ensure that 70% of funds received from customers will go in the development of the project.


What can builders do to correct this issue?


Even though, home buyers are the one who suffer the most in cases of project delays, there is very little that they can do apart from protests and litigations. Read more about what can home buyers do if a realty project has been delayed.

The problem has to be fixed by builders themselves.

  1. Builders and their associations can indulge in talks/consultations with government officials to make way for single window clearance system.
  2. After the Budget 2014, real estate sector can breathe a sigh of relief. FDI norms have been relaxed and a builder can take benefits of that.
  3. Budget 2014 also provides incentives for Real Estate Investment Trusts (REIT). And builders can now float a REIT to generate funds for their commercial projects, which will ease out the liquidity crunch.
  4. Even though, Government of India has brought in Real Estate Regulatory Act, the Builder bodies should also come up with a model ‘builder buyer agreement’ which will protect consumer interests.
  5. Implement fair marketing practices. There is no point in making a commitment that project will be delivered in 36 months from the date of purchase when it is fairly evident that project development will take about 5 years. Builders Bodies should also make sure that communication between a builder and the customer is fair and transparent.




Have any Questions?

Monday, January 7, 2019

How to calculate the true value of a commercial property which provide steady stream of rental income for the investor?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

In our blog post titled “How to calculate the true value of the property”; we primarily focused on valuation of a residential property. In this post, we will however, focus on valuation of commercial properties which provide steady stream of rental income for the investor. This valuation approach is based on the principle that the value of a property is related to its ability to produce cash flows. For this approach 3 techniques are commonly discussed.



  • Gross income multiplier:

Gross income multipliers are relationship between gross income and the sale prices for all comparable properties that are applied to the subject property.

Gross income multipliers (GM) = Sales Price/Gross Income

In arriving at a value for the subject property, the appraiser must develop an estimate of gross income based on the market data on comparable commercial properties. For the comparable properties the gross income should be annual income at the time the property is sold. Some appraisers use potential gross income (which assumes all space is occupied). Others use effective gross income (potential gross income less vacancies).  Since this method relies on gross income, therefore an assumption is made that the operating expenses are about the same proportion of gross income for all properties. This method relies heavily on current market transactions involving the sale of comparable properties. These techniques resemble the sales comparison method for valuation of a property discussed in the previous section in many ways. The focus of these techniques is to determine a market value that is consistent with prices being paid for comparable properties trading in the market place. However, rather than giving priority to adjusting for differences in value by adding and subtracting directly from the prices of comparable properties for physical and location attributes, these two methods tend to focus first on the income producing aspect of comparable properties relative to the prices at which they were sold. Adjustments are then made for physical and location dissimilarities.


  • Capitalization rate

This technique is similar to the Gross income technique except that it considers net operating income (NOI) rather than the gross income of comparable properties. When it is suspected that differences in operating expenses exist between comparable, the focus of the analysis should be shifted from gross income to NOI.

Capitalization Rate (cap rate) R = NOI/Sales Price

Following data should be collected to calculate capitalization rate:

Sale price, rent, and operating expenses should be collected from brokers, agents who were involved in the sale of comparable properties.

Important warning: both Gross income multipliers and cap rate approaches does not assure that the property will be a good investment if purchased. They only assure the buyer that it is a competitive market price and that if the method is applied correctly, the buyer is not overpaying or underpaying for the property relative to what other investors have paid for similar properties. The question of whether or not it is a good investment will depend on the future growth in rents, income, and property values.

  • Discounted present value techniques
This income approach is based on the principle that investors will pay no more for a property than the present value of all future NOIs. Based on the knowledge of market supply and demand, lease terms, as well as income and expenses, a forecast for cash flow is developed for a period for which we have knowledge regarding supply and demand, lease terms, income, and expenses. Normal forecasting period are 10 years.

  1. The first step in this technique is to forecast NOI (based on market supply and demand, lease terms, and expenses)
  2. The second step is to select a relevant period of analysis or the holding period for the investment.
  3. The third step is the selection of a discount rate (r) – this discount rate is the desired return for the real estate investment based on its risk when compared with returns earned on competing investments and other capital market benchmarks.
  4. Present value of expected NOI beyond the holding period. These cash flows are represented with reversion value (REV) or resale price.

Presently, capitalization rate method is used in India when evaluating the worth of the income generating properties. The discounted present value method relies on assumptions about demand and supply and therefore, there are possibilities of arriving at the wrong value of the property. 

Now, whenever you as an investor are looking to sell your commercial property such as office space or retail outlet, do your calculations as explained by us and make sure you get the right value of your property. Alternatively, if as an investor, you are looking to buy a commercial property, make sure to do these calculations in order to ascertain that you are not overpaying.


In a nutshell:

Did you calculate the true worth of your property before selling?? Let us know at nirrtigo@nirrtigo.com






Have any Questions?

Monday, December 31, 2018

What are the benefits of applying for a home loan in Joint name?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Sumit Sharma had planned to buy his home from a reputed developer in the locality that he was satisfied with. The cost of home was rupees 75 Lacs. Sumit had arranged for the 20% payment (Rupees 15 Lacs) from his pocket. For rest of the payment, he approached the bank to avail home loan.

Before sanctioning Rupees 60 Lacs, bank asked Sumit for following documents:

  1. Salary slip/Form 16 A
  2. A copy of the first and last pages of the ration card or a copy of PAN/Telephone/Electricity bills as a proof of residence
  3. Details of investments (FD certificates, shares, any fixed asset, etc. or any other documents supporting the financial background of the borrower)
  4. A photocopy of LIC policies with the latest premium payment receipts (if any)
  5. Passport size photographs (as applicable)
  6. A copy of bank statement for the last six months
  7. Age proof
  8. Financial details of guarantor, wherever guaranty is required


Having produced the above documents, Sumit was confident that his loan application will be approved. However, to his surprise, bank rejected his loan application on account of low monthly salary.

As a thumb rule normally most of the banks/HFCs (Housing Finance Companies) have a provision that one should be left with at least 50% to 60% of income after repayment of monthly loan installment, to take care of the family expenditures.

Sumit’s monthly salary was Rupees 80,000. For which he was eligible to avail about 40 Lacs Rupees as loan amount from his bank.

Cost of home: 75 Lacs Rupees
Upfront money arranged by Sumit: 15 Lacs Rupees
Loan eligibility: 40 Lacs Rupees
Remaining amount: (75-15-40) = 20 Lacs Rupees

Now, how will Sumit arrange for the remaining 20 lacs rupees?

To this, Sumit’s bank manager suggested that he can make his spouse as joint applicant for the home loan. Sumit’s wife was employed for last 3 years. Her net monthly income was Rupees 60,000. By combining the monthly income of both Sumit and his wife, bank was willing to sanction the loan amount of Rupees 60 Lacs. Finally, Sumit was able to buy his dream home jointly with his wife.



So, what are the benefits of applying for home loan in joint name?


  1. As can be seen from Sumit’s case above, applying jointly for home loan increases the amount of loan that bank can sanction for people to buy home.
  2. Moreover, banks or HFCs feel comfortable to sanction the loan in joint name because of greater security for the lender in view of the option to take recourse to either of borrowers.
  3. Besides improving your loan eligibility and enabling you to get a larger amount of loan, co-borrowers are eligible for deductions under the Income Tax Act. Both the borrowers can claim deduction, to the extent of their share in the loan, under Section 80C of the Income Tax Act 1961 for repayment of loan, subject to the condition that they are joint owners as well.
  4. Section 24(b) grants deduction for interest up to Rs 150,000 per year on a loan for acquiring a residential house. This deduction is available individually to both the co-borrowers. To be eligible for the deduction, the home loan needs to be taken in joint names, property be owned and financed jointly in equal shares, with both spouses being joint owners.


All the co-borrowers or joint-borrowers are jointly and severally liable to repay the loan availed from the bank/HFC, subject of course to the terms and conditions stipulated in the loan agreement. Thus, before volunteering to become co-applicant in a loan transaction, it is advisable to properly understand the implications of such decision.



Have any Questions?

Monday, December 24, 2018

Must-ask Questions Before You Finalize on a Luxury Apartment

Now, that you have decided to buy a luxury apartment, it’s important to invest your time and carry out the necessary homework around the luxury real-estate market. Firstly, the easiest way to do research is using the internet. There are many real-estate discussion forums and groups in social-networking sites such as Facebook or Quora, where you can post questions related to the luxury home market. All you need is basic networking skills, and you can easily evoke informative answers from “virtual” friends.

Apart from posting online queries, it’s important for you to have in-person interactions with people in real estate. For example, you can set appointments with sales people from various real-estate companies and get a quick view of the prices and deals.

Besides, it’s important to draw impartial advice from people who are experts in the market. In that respect, you may meet real-estate advisers, brokers and agents who are known to enlighten many on the market and share a few tips on finding the best deals in the city.

All the interactions, be they virtual or in person, will help you to avoid apprehensions about the big investments you’re about to make. However, there are ways in which you can prepare yourself and ask better questions to understand the market of luxury apartments.

Before the final plunge, let's quickly run through some common questions that come to everyone's mind…

  1. Is the project title clear? 
  2. Has the project got the required approval? 
  3. What is the total cost of ownership? What is the monthly maintenance cost?
  4. Which other costs are included along with the registration fee?  
  5. What are the highlights of the project? 
  6. How great is the aesthetic value of the building? Is the building design in sync with your concept of a luxury building? 
  7. What are the key amenities showcased by the builder? 
  8. According to you, what are the most desirable amenities of a luxury apartment?
  9. How good are the views from balcony and living room?
  10. Are concierge services available? 
  11. How far are the conveniences?
  12. Is the price affordable for you? 
  13. What’s the overall reputation of the builder in terms of deliverability, quality and finish?
  14. What’s the actual size of the house? 
  15. Is there a model apartment or an occupied flat that you can visit?  
  16. What is the compensation offered if the possession gets delayed?
  17. Is there an option to customize the interiors when the building is in construction phase?
  18. What are the luxury amenities provided by the builder? Are they at par with amenities in luxury projects being built by other builders?
  19. What is the overall prospect of the price trends in the given locality?
  20. What is the probable return on investment for the given project?
  21. If the apartment is already occupied, can you check the opinion of current owners about the property?
  22. How is the locality connected to other parts of the city? 
  23. Is there easy access to public transport facilities?
  24. Apart from the main features, what are subtle aspects of the project which make it unique? For example, the floor-to-ceiling height, common wall sharing, number of apartments in each floor or block, number of elevators in each block, fire safety precautions, etc.


Closing note...

Here is one suggestion to prospective luxury home buyers – don’t believe everything that sales reps say. Try to go beyond their words and the glossy brochures. Carry out a good research on your future home as the pay-out is big and it’s an important decision in your life.


This is a Guest post by Seema Mohta, who has over 7 years of experience within Real Estate Industry. She has worked with Various Real estate companies and has Good knowledge about property trends, Investment, Apartments in Sarjapur

Monday, December 17, 2018

What are the things one should notice before taking possession of the property or new flat in India?

Sumit was finally relieved that he will be getting the possession of his flat in Noida. Sumit had bought this under construction flat in 2009. After many delays due to environmental clearances and slow progress by the developer, the flats were finally ready for possession for flat owners. Sumit and other flat buyers in this group housing project had several rounds of discussions with the builder and environment ministry for speedy delivery of flats. Because on one hand, many of these flat buyers including Sumit were paying monthly rent and on the other hand, EMIs on these flats had started. That was double whammy for Sumit and others.

Now that, flats are ready for possession, what shall Sumit and other home buyers like him verify in order to make sure possession of flats is legal? Before handing over the final payment and taking possession of the property, Sumit and other flat buyers in this group housing project shall ensure that:

  1. Property is vacant
  2. Title certificate to be handed over by seller to buyer
  3. Buildings plans, approved layouts, and other supporting documents (original) to be handed over by seller to buyer
  4. In case of new group housing project (as is the case with Sumit), it shall be verified that building has been given the occupancy/completion certificate by the concerned authority
  5. Mutation is done to reflect the name of the purchaser


Find below detailed document highlighting what needs to be checked before taking over the possession:

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

What is Property Tax / House Tax in India?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Municipalities across all cities in India charge a levy from local residents to maintain the city’s infrastructure such as sewerage, park, roads, other civic amenities, lighting, etc. The property tax shall not be confused with income tax payable on income generated from the property. While income generated from the property by renting it out comes under the ambit of income tax authorities and is calculated as per the income tax guidelines, the property tax is a municipal level subject. Income generated from the property is a central subject whereas property tax is a local subject. Property tax is also sometimes referred to as ‘house tax’.



Some municipalities do not charge property tax and instead bill separately for the services rendered to the residents. There are municipal bodies who charge residents for water and drainage facilities, maintenance charges. Moreover, MLA (Member of Legislative Assembly) and MP (Member of Parliament) funds are also utilized for the upkeep of the city.

How is property tax calculated? The tax is computed on the basis of rental income that the property under consideration may generate by way of letting it out. Usually, the property tax or house tax is a small percentage of the yearly rental income that the property can generate if it is rented-out. And it varies from state to state and from city to city. The property tax / house tax in India is to be paid once every year or every 6 months.

Below are the types of properties that are liable to be taxed under property tax / house tax provision in India:

  • Residential house (self-occupied or let out)
  • Office Building
  • Factory Building
  • Godowns
  • Flats
  • Shops


More details about property tax in India:





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Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Four Financial Issues to Resolve Before You Settle Down

When the time comes to finally settling down, we often get so caught up in all the emotional and operational aspects that we forget to take the practical course of considering the financial aspects, before embarking upon this new phase in our lives.

It thus comes as no surprise that financial incompatibility can often cause situations of conflict in a marriage. This includes factors like budgeting, current debts, and current and proposed investments.

Here are a number of crucial financial issues that one needs to delve into, before settling down –






Review current debts –If you have a loan on a car or an education loan, or a credit card bill, you ought to put a number to the debt in terms of the value of your liabilities. It is also important to factor in how long it is going to take to pay back the amount, given the new expenses that are bound to crop in post-marriage. You should also review your partner’s financial liabilities and make a joint decision on whether to individually clear all debts, or pool in resources. This way, budgeting becomes much easier and the fact that there are debts to pay comes as no surprise or a cause for concern later in the marriage – full disclosure is mandatory.

List out assets and ongoing investments –Once you have identified the financial liabilities in terms of current debt, it’s important to look into current assets, investments and income, so as to be able to set a financial plan in place. While most of your investments till now were defined by your individual goals, marriage entails deciding what goals remain individual to a person and which goals, two individuals can combine and work towards achieving together. Make a list of your current and ongoing investments, approximate returns, stock investments and current assets like jewellery and real estate. Once you do this, you can decide the financial responsibility to be borne for each investment, post marriage.

Also, if need be, you might want to make future investments in your spouse’s name, or change the nominee in current investments, and while listing assets. These are aspects that need to be taken into account before settling down so that there are no conflicts or misunderstandings later on.

Financial planning and budgeting – A critical factor you need to take into consideration when getting married, is that your attitude towards money and those of your future spouse, might be different. You should thus have a discussion with your partner, about their spending habits, goals, and future expectations vis à vis those of your own. What you might consider a frivolous expense, might be a priority spending area, in the eyes of your future spouse.

You should also factor in financial responsibilities like monthly maintenance bills or looking after parents, and future plans like buying a house or having children. At this point, you ought to have your individual as well as joint priorities set, so that you can put a number to your short and long term finances.

An additional area of conflict could be actually spending on the wedding, which you should factor in into the financial-planning process as well.

Defining financial responsibility and demarcation of money – Often, conflicts arise depending on who manages the money, or who’s paying the bills. It thus becomes important to plan whether one or both the individuals have access to the funds, whether there are joint accounts or individual accounts or both, and each person’s role in making investments, bill payments and household expenses.


This is a guest post by Paisa Bazaar

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

What are the landlord’s rights and what precautions a landlord shall take before renting out a property?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Real estate is a lucrative investment class. Not only it gives you capital appreciation gains but at the same time one can earn rental income from his/her property. Whether the property you own is commercial or residential, one can rent the property to earn stable monthly income. However, as easy as it may sound, there are always issues when it comes to renting out a property. What if the tenant does not pay the rent on time? What if the tenant mishandles the property? What if the tenant doesn't pay the utility bills on time? These are some of the questions a property owner is confronted with and therefore taking precautions at the beginning of renting out a property will make sure that the property is rented out to good quality tenant.

At the same time, a landlord enjoys legal rights as laid down by the Transfer of Property Act, 1882. These are ‘Right to timely accrual of lease amount’, ‘Right to know about the condition his property is in’, ‘Right to know of any changes that the tenant might want to make’, ‘Right to notify the tenant of an intention to increase the rent’, ‘Right to be informed of any disclosures’, ‘Right to get back his property on repossession’, ‘Right to repossess the property complete with all fittings and furnishings’, ‘Right to claim all the charges for supplies’.

Therefore, before one rents out or leases his/her property to a prospective tenant, make sure to go through the following document about ‘Precautions before renting out’ and ‘landlord's rights’.




Have any Questions?

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Why You Don’t Need to Leave Your Home to Find a New One

House hunting isn’t for the faint of heart.


No matter how structured your city is or well paying your job might be, you might still be short of a decent place to live in. A house hunt takes seemingly countless hours of neighborhood tours and location drive-by to finalize that decision on ideal property. If your weekdays are packed, chances are that you would also have to compromise on your weekends to go property hunting with your broker.

As if putting up with your broker isn’t enough, these incessant trips to different localities will also leave you physically and financially drained. Opting for an online realty search, you get to check out countless listings, be it rental or lease apartments, without even having to step out of your home.

Image: Pixabay


Here’s how taking your house hunt online can take a load off your shoulders.


  • Saves Time and Energy 

Visiting each flat for rent personally would take up a lot of your time and energy. Additionally, you’d have to cough up parking and fuel charges if you plan on taking your own vehicle to new localities. Getting stuck in traffic for hours can also leave you frustrated.

When you search for properties online, you save yourself from all these unnecessary hassles. You can simply surf through numerous sites that give you a virtual tour of the property. You can make a list of a couple of properties that you want to check out personally, and pre-book a visit before you zero in on a particular piece of property.

  • Eases The Documentation Process

Unlike conventional processes where the broker would be in charge of the situation while you were in the dark, you would take the lead here. You’d be aware of the proper pricing and wouldn’t be taken advantage of. Some of the real estate sites even help you understand the documentation process.

  • No Brokerage Fee

When you opt to search for flats without brokers online, you directly interact with the owner and avoid having to go through any intermediate. This helps you in getting to know the owner and learning more about the property first-hand. You also free yourself from paying a brokerage fee and all that unnecessary running around.

  • Refines Your Search

One of the best parts of searching for a property online is not having to go through hundreds of random properties to get what you want. Filtering your search according to the locality, specification, amenities, or the budget you are going for will help you streamline your search.

You can get your hands on the best deals when you compare different properties and their rates online. Doing your homework on the current real estate scenario across different neighbourhoods also helps you build confidence in your ultimate decision.  

  • 24/7 Availability

Round-the-clock realty portals let you access different properties throughout the day. With just a PC and phone at hand, you can check out properties online without the even needing to get out of bed. You can get all the contacts and listings you need within the comforts of your home.

This means that you don’t have to compromise on your leisure time. Using this method, you can shortlist a few prospects before you shift into a new home in a different city.

You can now find the home of your dreams without giving up on daily activity. Comment below to let us know how online realty portals have helped you find the right place, and/or if you have a better suggestion!


This is a guest post by Sudarshan Purohit

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Cyclical nature of commercial real estate

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

This post deals with commercial real estate in India. For the last 2 years, one would have noticed that most real estate developers and private equity funds have focused their energies on development of residential real estate across India.

Why did this happen? Why did real estate developers in last 2 years solely focus on residential real estate? Well, the answer lies in global economic slowdown. Due to global economic slowdown, companies started to lay off employees and there was freeze on investment in new projects. And all of this resulted in lack of demand for commercial office space by companies. Due to lack of demand of office space, developers ignored the commercial real estate and that has resulted in tight supply of office space.

And now that, economy is starting to show signs of recovery, there is again demand for office space and therefore it is pushing up the prices of commercial real estate. So, the situation now is – demand is increasing but supply is tight. And in this condition, rentals are bound to go up.

Why does this happen? Why do we sometimes see oversupply of commercial real estate and sometimes tight supply? It is because of the cyclical nature of the real estate industry. Some underlying facts regarding the commercial real estate are:

  1. It is a very large market and it is highly competitive
  2. Ownership of commercial real estate is highly fragmented across the country


Why does commercial real estate development follow a cyclical pattern? During the boom time, when local real estate developers and investors sense that vacancy rates are declining and rents are rising, they believe more development may be feasible. Consequently, developers begin to analyze markets to determine if additional space, if developed, can be leased profitably. Because many competing developers may sense this opportunity simultaneously, they may all begin to develop at once in order to satisfy the demand. Even though there may be a definite need for additional space, the potential for over-development will exist as each developer rushes to deliver additional space to the market before competitors. There is no way to determine exactly how much space should be developed because the depth and extent of demand are difficult to predict. As a result, commercial real estate is sometimes said to be prone to periodic cycles of over-development.

One would have seen during the 2004-2008 boom time in India, when plethora of shopping malls came up in Mumbai, Delhi NCR, Bangalore, Chennai, and other economic centers in India. Because there was demand for retail space, developers jumped up and created an oversupply of malls across India. The important point to notice is that it is very difficult to predict the exact demand and therefore oversupply will happen in commercial real estate.

On the other hand, when economy is going down and growth is shrinking, developers may ignore the development of commercial real estate because of lack of demand from companies. However, as soon as, economy picks up, the tight supply of commercial real estate again pushes up the rentals and vacancy rates starts to fall.

And the cycle continues like this. There will be periods of oversupply and there will be periods of tight supply.



Let’s analyze this diagram above.

  1. When economy is in recovery phase, the demand for commercial real estate increases which reduces the vacancy rates and rentals go up. 
  2. Seeing the fall in vacancy rates and improving rentals, developers start developing the additional space. Rentals start to cool off because there is supply of additional space. 
  3. However, because it is difficult to predict the actual demand, the oversupply of space is seen in the market. Rentals fall.
  4. Increasing vacancy rates and falling rentals drive away the developers from developing the commercial real estate and supply is tightened.

One full cycle takes 5-6 years and all the 4 steps mentioned above repeat themselves.


With this in mind, can you time the market as far as investment is concerned??





Have any Questions?

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Growth of Housing Finance in India

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

In order to provide housing for all by 2022, the government needs to develop the housing finance sector. In its current avatar, the housing finance sector is able to provide loans to borrowers working in the formal sector with proof of income and banking transactions. However, about 99% of the total shortage of housing in urban areas belongs to the Economic Weaker Section and Low Income Groups of the society.  (Overall housing shortage in urban areas - 18.78 million units till 2012).

Over a period of time, housing finance has evolved considerably. In the initial days, people either self funded their housing needs or participated in schemes launched by government owned institutions in the real estate sector like state housing boards and development authorities. Launch of HUDCO in 1970 represented a paradigm shift and for the first time housing finance was formalized. However, private sector participation in housing finance took shape only when HDFC was setup in 1977. In the late 1990s, commercial banks also got involved in housing finance.

On August 28, 2014, Prime minister launched the ‘Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna’. The objective of the program is financial inclusion for all. Can this program cater to the housing finance needs of the BPL or marginalized Population in future? There is possibility of directly transferring interest subsidies on housing loans to the EWS and LIG categories.

In this section, we highlight the various steps taken by the successive governments to facilitate the need for housing and housing finance in India.






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Tuesday, October 30, 2018

How to check for legalities, cost, penalty clauses, and available financing options for a real estate project in India?

Author: Sachin Gupta | Find me on Twitter

Are you looking to buy property in India? Have you decided on the location, or choice of builder? Are you satisfied with your research of similar offerings available in the market? If you answered ‘YES’ to these questions, then there is all the likelihood that you may be about to make the booking amount to the real estate developer. But, hang on; despite making all the efforts to research for the right property, right builder, location, and budget, there is still a possibility of things going wrong. What else can you do to minimize such risks? Well, conduct a thorough due-diligence including verifying the legalities of the residential project of your choice, It’s pricing, penalty clauses to the developer, and available financing options for the project.

It’s not that difficult a task, just be more open and ask a set of questions from the developer, and bank. This is to make sure all bases are covered in case something goes wrong with the project. We have put together a detailed list of “TO DO” things for you to verify before you pay the booking amount for a property of your choice.

Here it is:






Have any Questions?

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

How to Select a Real Estate Agent

Whether you are a property owner who wishes to sell real estate or whether you are a prospective buyer who wants to buy a property, you will need to hire a real estate agent to help you in your endeavor. When it comes to hiring property agents, not all home buyers and sellers are as informed as they should be about these service professionals. The following tips will help you analyze a real estate agent's credentials, his work and success stories so that you can conveniently achieve your goal.

Here are some useful ways by which you can find out more about the agent before you decide to get him on board.


  • Get in touch with the agent’s recent clients

Ask the potential agents to bring with them a list of their previous clients along with what they have listed or sold in the past one year. Now before you pick up the phone and start calling up the clients, ask your agent if you should expect any specific client to be particularly satisfied or particularly upset. You can also ask the other clients about the asking price and sale price. If you happen to be the seller, find out if the properties sold by this agent are similar to yours in terms of price, amenities and features. One should hire an agent who has a specialization in the type of property you are looking for or wish to offload. You may also ask the clients as to how long their property been on the market?


  • Check the license

Real estate dealers must hold a license that is authorized by a board of a particular state. You should check with your state's regulatory body to find out if the agent is licensed and whether there has been any sort of complaint or disciplinary action taken against him. You may be able to find information related to certain states on databases available online, which the consumers can access.


  • Opt for the best

Check out the peer-given awards held by the agents. Look for felicitations that actually mean something, for instance, ‘Realtor of the Year’ award conferred by the state or an association of realtors. Real estate agents are best judged by contemporaries and peers and if an agent has been honored by his allies then that is a huge endorsement.


  • Look for the right credentials

Just like doctors specialize and have a niche, real estate agents also excel in a niche. Even professionals working in the general sphere will seek special training in a particular area. So make sure you go through the name and look for any indication that the agent has made extra effort and taken specialized training in a specific sub-domain of property sales. Here is what the designations imply –

    1. Accredited Buyer's Representative or ABR – The agent has added education in representing shoppers in a transaction.
    2. Certified Residential Specialist or CRS – This implies that the person holds extra training in managing residential real estate.
    3. Seniors Real Estate Specialist or SRES – This means that the agent has completed training for helping both sellers and buyers who are over 50 years of age.


  • Find out how much experience the agent holds
You can find out facts like how long a particular agent has been dealing in real estate. Such information can be obtained from the state licensing authority. Or you may simply inquire the details from the agent himself. If the agent has been out of business for over five years, they could now be learning on you which is definitely not good. You should always hire a professional who has been actively engaged in a specific sub-domain and price category. You should gauge the magnitude of knowledge of through these two parameters and check the agent’s market presence.

  • Check the current listings
Go through the agent's listings shown online. Check out the agent’s official website or other portals with Multiple Listing Service as a searchable online database. Nowadays, most buyers begin their search over the Internet. Thus, you should hire an agent who uses the web effectively. Presentation is everything and so the agent must be able to show his work through pictures of properties and establish credibility through listings. 

Your responsibility is to see how close the listings come to the type of property you wish to sell or buy. You should also check whether the agent operates in the area where you would like to invest and whether he has dealt with homes in the same price range. The person must be able to have sufficient listings to portray a steady business. However, the list should not be extremely long either because then you will just be a mere number in it. 

You can also assess the agent’s proficiency by mentioning about a recent deal in the area. If he knows about it and can give some details, this means that he knows his job and you can hire him immediately.

Lastly, don't forget to check the various fees charged by the real estate agent. And compare these fees with other real estate agents in the locality.


This is a guest post by Devika Arora who is a professional writer dedicated to following the current real estate trends and writing guest posts and blog posts for the benefit of potential home buyers and investors. The above article talks about how to choose a property agent.




Wednesday, October 17, 2018

5 Investment Tips for Commercial Real Estate

An investment in commercial real estate is a great way of increasing your market worth. Also, by acquiring the asset you add a steady source of earnings to your portfolio. Commercial property that is strategically located can appreciate dramatically over a period of time, while rented commercial properties can procure a regular cash flow for other financial pursuits like investment or for comfortable retirement. The following are five useful tips that will help you while purchasing a commercial property.


  • Learn from experiences 

It is always good to go with your instincts. Make use of personal knowledge as the best ideas for investment come from the investor's prior investment experiences and know-how. You should search for real estate in an area located close to your home or some place that is known to you. Investing in familiar markets is always a safer option and you can trust your instincts about what to buy where. Start going through blueprints and get a potential property evaluated. Remember to park your hard-earned money in a well-established locality, rather than an upcoming one even though it would cost more. It is going to be a more profitable investment eventually.


  • Wait for the right opportunity 

If you have just seen the property once and have decided to seal the deal, probably you are rushing in a bit too soon. Do not make such a blunder just because you have the purchasing power or like the look of the place. That does not mean the property is ready to be acquired. You should be comfortable with the area and the property. Visit the real estate during all times of the day to see the amount of lighting and the noise in the vicinity. Recce of the real estate may probably even bring out a few flaws in the property that can later be used to negotiate the price.

  • Build a real estate circle

An investor seeking to buy a commercial property cannot strike the best deal without a few suggestions and strategies from friends or experts from the real estate network. If you have a business associate from the legal, banking, contracting or property sales profession whose opinion you can trust, you should probably get some professional advice before taking the plunge. The person may also help you find a better deal.

  • Plan for both short and long term prospects

As an investor of commercial property, you should be able to gauge the immediate outcome from your investment, while also understanding its long term effects. Cities and their suburbs consist of several run down properties that were once buzzing. Draw your plans and cross-check what you want with what is available. Sometimes, changes in infrastructure, transportation routes and arrival of big organizations in the vicinity can instantly boost the worth of real estate. If something like that is on the cards for the property you are considering, you may be in for success in the near future.

  • Diversify your portfolio

Do not risk your money by parking all your funds at one place. You may be taking a huge risk by putting all your investment into a single commercial property. While buying commercial real estate and renting it out will ensure decent cash flow at a later stage, a market slowdown during retirement would be ruinous. Commercial property must not be the only one holding for an investor. To avoid getting stuck with a fruitless investment, it is advisable that you diversify by purchasing residential real estate or stock. If you are only inclined towards venturing into the realty sector, you can branch out by acquiring space in retail or office buildings, apartment buildings, condominiums, studio flats or by buying raw land.


This is a guest post by Devika Arora. The above piece of work talks about commercial properties in India.


Wednesday, October 10, 2018

The two options for the soon-to-be landlord

Around the globe there are just two options for everyone looking for the ideal tenant match for their house: One is easy but expensive and another is comparatively difficult but cost effective and fully autonomous.The easy but expensive one is where you appoint a property management service to find and then manage the tenant and rent respectively in return of which they charge an amount. The second and only one left now is where you do all the hard work in finding a tenant and manage them in your space. While the level of guarantee as to the right tenant is less in either case but the moment you take things in your control, things become a hell lot easier both on your pocket and also provide peace of mind.

The takers for both these options are many but let us look at both the options for the first clueless timers’ sake.


For those comfortable with property management service

The choice to go for property management services is not bad, it not only saves time and effort in finding the ideal tenant but also do a clear background check to ensure that the tenants are genuine. If you are planning to opt for this mode, there are just two things for you to consider: where to find the right service provider and being comfortable with the expenses that you will have to incur.

  • Where to find the right property management service provider?
Depending on where your property is, you can either go for the traditional word of mouth medium or use reliable real estate portals available on the internet. The latter is much easier for all you have to do is put in your location and search, for example, if your property is in Bangalore, just put in ‘property dealers in Bangalore’ and you will get a number of results on time.

  • Be comfortable with the expenses
In order to be comfortable with the expense, you will first need to get an idea of the exact amount. Confirm and research the going service rate in the market and also ask your provider if the cost of managing the property is recurring or one time. Doing this will prepare you for the coming expenses.

 

For the 'do it yourself' counterparts


Doing all the tasks on your own definitely makes you a Brave-heart. Although it may look impossible, but it takes less time to get it

  • Advertise your house
Begin online. For nominal fees and sometimes even free, you can now advertise your property on renowned websites. Like the last Bangalore example, what you can do is post a ‘Flat for rent in Bangalore’ ad that will eventually take the prospects to the hyperlinked image. For those who want a more advanced result for less money, they should try YouTube or Vine. Upload a simulated tour of the property, then share the links on different classified websites such as Craigslist, also add them in your various social media platforms. After listing your property, do not forget to put in the necessary "For Rent" signage in front yard.

  • Tidy it up
Strangely, some landlords do not even bother to tidy up their houses and apartments before putting it up for rent. Normally, the nicer and cleaner your house is at times when the prospect comes,the nicer it looks when they both stay and leave.

  • Repair structural shortcomings
Replacing the busted appliances, chucking out left-behind scrap, pests and termites spray and by simply adding new paint coat will take you far in attracting the ideal renter. Also the probability of getting a higher charge increases, big time.

  • A ready rental policy
Have a document that clearly specifies the various lease’s TnCs, such as if pets are allowed, if you need security deposit and/or expect the tenants to bear their renters insurance. Make sure you have it ready even before you start shortlisting tenants.


We all know how difficult it can be to find the right tenant for your property. There is no right or wrong option here, everything depends on the efforts you can take and the money you have. Now that you know what it takes to go in either of them, make a sound decision.



This is a guest post by Tripti Rai. She writes about real estate sector, she keeps her readers informed about latest developments in real time through her writing.