Affordable housing to the rescue
Affordable housing drove the recession-hit realty sector in Haryana in 2018. With the real estate yet to recover from the effects of demonetisation, goods and services tax (GST) and teething troubles in implementation of RERA, affordable housing segment emerged as the king in the current year as the builders focused on consolidation rather than expansion.
In view of large unsold inventories in residential, commercial and retail sectors, a majority of the builders preferred not to venture into new projects, but instead, preferred to dispose off the existing stocks by offering discounts and other incentives. However, in view of the general recession(builders call it correction), the realtors was partially successful in disposing off their units.
In fact, BJP government’s thrust on Housing for All by 2022 saw it dole out certain incentives to the private builders of the affordable housing projects such as increased density per acre (300), more floor area ratio (FAR) and relaxation in the payment of the external development charges(EDC). The simplification of Change of Land Use norms and introduction of the concept of Transferable Development Rights (TDR), on the pattern of Maharashtra, was also aimed at giving a fillip to the housing, especially affordable housing in NCR, including Gurugram.
In fact, Gurugram, which till a few years ago was considered to be beyond the reach of the common man, is emerging the hub of affordable housing. Ditto for other towns in the non national capital region(NCR) where the apartment culture made its presence felt this year.
However, the affordable housing continued to have ‘locational disadvantage’ as majority of these projects came up in far-flung and new emerging areas, where infrastructure continued to be primitive. To address this issue, the Haryana Government effected a major amendment in relevant rules setting up an exclusive EDC Fund for the upgrade of infrastructure. Earlier, all EDC collected from the state was routed to the centralised fund. Similarly, the Haryana Government succeeded in getting Metro to new areas in its cities like Gurugram and Faridabad to New Delhi.