Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Why 2017 is Likely to Be a Good Year for NRI Property Buyers

Non-resident Indians from all over the world have been fascinated with Indian real estate market. However, they are bothered by the lack of transparency and ways in which business dealings are conducted in India; especially when information is withheld deliberately from the buyers, and there is a lack of scientific process of due diligence. With several key policy changes in 2016 such as demonetization, Real Estate Regulation Act (RERA), the Goods and Services Tax (GST), and the Benami Transaction Act, the debate now is if the NRIs will be interested in investing in the nation.

Here’s why NRI property buyers should invest in Indian real estate in 2017:

Firstly, there are many ready possession properties built at prime locations such as Bangalore, NCR region, Chennai, etc. There are many luxury villas in Bangalore and 2 to 4 BHK apartments in NCR that are ready to be sold. Secondly, India is expected to keep its place among the fastest-growing economies in the world, with the real estate sector steering the wheel. Furthermore, policies like Goods & Services Tax, Real Estate Regulatory Act, Real Estate Investment Trusts, Benami Act, and demonetization are expected to bring about transparency in the sector. Lastly, the amended rules and regulations will ease up the purchasing process. Relaxation of laws by the Reserve Bank of India for NRI buyers is also a major benefit.

Naushad Panjwani, the managing partner at Mandarus Partners LLP, believes that the Indian realty has major credibility issues largely due to the absence of effective regulator, which is present in other sectors (TRAI, IRDAI, SEBI, etc.). He also believes that some other reasons that hold back NRIs to invest in India could be the shortage of funds for projects, the delay in the disposal of court cases, the lack of title insurance and nexus among politicians, developers, and bureaucrats. Panjwani says, “All of these factors kept good business houses away from the realty sector, and the industry as a whole was characterized by many unscrupulous elements. However, things have started to change slowly. The Real Estate Regulatory Act (RERA) and easing of inflow of funds in the form of Real Estate Investment Trusts, External Commercial Borrowings, and Foreign Direct Investment, have attracted the attention of reputed business houses and customers alike.”

The Chairman Emeritus of Sobha Ltd, Mr. PNC Menon believes that Indian realty sector has reached a stage where it offers NRIs a range of options to invest in, from affordable to mid-range to luxury properties. Menon said, "With greater transparency, tighter regulations, more affordability and enhanced price stability, Non Resident Indians will find interesting property investment opportunities, as long as they have a long-term view and are discerning about which realty project to invest in. India is a huge market with over 1.2 billion people and an emerging economy on a global front,”

Rustomjee Group’s brand custodian and chief customer delight officer, Mr. Kaizad Hateria has expressed his opinion that moves like demonetization will bring about transparency in the real estate sector and minimize unaccounted cash dealings. He said, “Greater transparency, will improve the element of trust in the Indian property market and this will make Non Resident Indians more confident about investing in properties in India.”

The marketing director of Sheth Creators, Hiral Sheth mentioned that realty sector has come a long way by becoming the second largest employer in India. Number of rules and regulations have been amended to ease the process of home buying as well as commercial property. Sheth said, “Factors like Foreign Direct Investment in the realty sector, relaxation of laws by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) regarding property buying by Non Resident Indians and lenient policies via-à-vis the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA), have accelerated real estate investments. Also, the availability of affordable properties, attracts a large number of urban Non Resident Indian buyers from across the globe.”

Industry experts believe that 2017 will be a good year for NRI buyers to invest in properties. New policies that will boost transparency and rules that will simplify the property purchasing process are the main reasons for attracting NRI buyers.

This is a guest post by Dinesh Dawde

Saturday, January 7, 2017

DIYs that can increase the value of your home

Every home once in a while has to go through some improvisations to increase the value of the house. It is more so if you are looking to rent or sell your property. Some physical changes and improvements can add to the appeal of your house and make it look more attractive. A fresh coat of paint, some new wood work inclusions etc. can be a good start to home improvisations. But if you are looking to do some value additions without spending much, you can try some of the DIYs listed below.

To make a house look more elegant and bright, light color drapes paired with white upholstery and white based furniture pieces are the key. So you can start off by changing the curtains. De-stain any old wooden pieces and re-stain them according to the color tone of the room. Few other economic changes would be to either steam vacuum the carpets or change over the carpets to lighter shades. Lighter shades of carpet make the house look big and elegant. Symmetrical patterns on the back-splash of the kitchen counter, stairway railing and verandah railing will make the house look organized and high fashioned. Keeping the kitchen counter top clear of unwanted items will make the counter seem big and attractive.

Bedrooms are the biggest appealing points when considering a home. Big beds with neatly laid white and fresh linens are biggest attractions. Symmetrical arrangements of the bed with side tables and other furniture pieces in the room gives the room a sense of space. Similarly white sheer curtains and drapes make the room seem brighter. You can customize the door and cupboard knobs by painting them all in a same tone of metallic shade. These metallic shades make the home appear custom made and add value to the property. Landscaping in the backyard or merely adding some greenery to your terrace garden will show detailed touch in the house. Every buyer or renter want to see a personalized touch in the house they are looking. Creating a specific purpose for each space in the house will show how each space can be efficiently utilized. Even if it is not utilized the same way as yours, it throws opportunities and ideas for much more use to the space.

Use of energy efficient fixtures and appliances adds as a huge advantage when trying to put the house on the market. Energy efficient incandescent light bulbs, power saving smaller appliances will be looked up as a huge saving on a long run. Adding additional storage outside of the house in the garage will also be considered a value addition. Leaving these additional storage half empty will make the storage space seem more and will help the buyer visualize how much the storage space can accommodate. Every home improvement once started must be completed to satisfaction. Refrain from taking bigger home renovation projects if the deadline seems too tight. Or hire a professional Home Renovation company which can provide you end-to-end solutions including modular kitchen, wood work, steel or iron doors, electric & bath fittings, flooring, walls, interiors, and exteriors. Consider the use of the particular update or renovation in the long run and foresee how it will add value to the house before implementing any changes to your home.

This is a guest post by A. Ramya