Change in consumer demands will enable the Indian housing sector to set global benchmarks for better satisfaction
The Indian real estate sector made an impressive rebound despite disruptions and market upheavals during the pandemic. Remarkable sales were registered in Q3 and Q4 2020 which continued till March 2021. As the pandemic continues to stay, noticeable changes in consumer behaviour and market sentiments are shaping up new trends in the segment. The realty sector has now transformed into a buyer’s market, and today, with an evolved sense of buying preferences, consumers are focusing their searchlight on bespoke offerings to make the best investment decisions.
The sector has registered indomitable spirit and has remained resilient to become an investor’s favourite. The ‘work from home’ model is likely to remain this year and it is increasingly becoming an integral part of the long-term strategy. Businesses across the country are also finding this model viable to run operations in the pandemic. Demand for workspaces in homes, functional areas, dedicated space for study, gymnasiums and entertainment zones will continue to dominate the market. Ultra-modern high-rise apartments, gated townships and luxury towers with well-managed infrastructure will remain the most preferred choice in the ultra-luxe segment, which is driven by NRIs, UHNIs, expats, and business leaders amongst others.
Interest rates are historically low and the RBI’s firm assurance in maintaining the status quo has boosted demand in the market. This has pushed investors to proceed with their purchase decisions. The segment has remained the safest investment option and conducive government policies, lucrative offers with guaranteed higher and secured returns will attract investors to keep market sentiment buoyed throughout 2021. The trend of consolidation in real estate was in place and it will be considered by more players in the days to come.
Ready-to-move-in spaces will remain the topmost priority of today's discerning customers who do not want to wait endlessly for their properties and expect quick possessions. As these spaces are devoid of such risks, they have become a safer investment option in today’s world where preferences are changing rapidly. A digital future awaits the realty segment as tech-enabled solutions will play a pivotal role in its growth. Trusted developers with strong financial backing and proven track record will gain a higher market share. Customer-centricity will define the Indian real estate sector and the buyers will search for offerings which can sate their demands by coupling emerging trends with their preferences. Change in consumer demands will enable the Indian housing sector to set global benchmarks for better customer satisfaction.
The increase in demand is organic as it is driven by the realisation among buyers about the value of having a home in the midst of the pandemic. The second wave of coronavirus has resulted in a temporary decrease in velocity but with mass rollout of vaccines and lowering of infections, the industry is confident that the demand will bounce back quickly. The market gained some traction late last year, cushioned by massive fiscal stimulus, accommodative monetary policy and signs of a better-than-expected economic rebound. With lowering of Covid cases and economic recovery, a fair price rise in property rates also looks inevitable. The sentiments are high as the government has set a target of vaccinating the entire population by the end of 2021. The pandemic has transformed the market and 2021 will be a turning point for the Indian real estate sector. The segment now understands the ‘new normal’ and is better prepared than last year. Imagination, innovation and digital transformation will drive the sector, and with new trends shaping up, the realty sector will enter a new growth phase soon.
The author is Director, M3M
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