Realty hit hard by demonetisation

Realty hit hard by demonetisation
16/01/2017 , by , in News/Views

Property market, long considered a black money safe haven, seems to have taken a big hit from demonetisation, with developers seeing their sales drop by about 50 per cent in the last three months and now pinning their hopes on buyers coming to market with ‘white money’. The genuine buyers in the residential market, on the other hand, appear to be holding back their purchase plans on hopes that the interest rates would fall further and the property prices would plunge post demonetisation, which some see as a ‘cleansing’ of a sector infested with illicit funds.

As per the industry data, the secondary or resale market, where maximum black money typically gets parked, has been worst-affected as transactions almost dried up, barring some interest in marque properties, due to paucity of cash after scrapping of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.

The registration of properties also saw a decline. In the process, developers are estimated to have incurred a revenue loss of Rs 22,600 crore because of the cash ban while state governments suffered a notional loss on stamp duty of Rs 1,200 crore, as per property consultant Knight Frank India.

States are yet to revise guidance values or circle rates post demonetisation, but may have to soon consider lowering the rates to reflect market sentiment. “Property sale, in both primary and secondary markets, were affected during November-December due to demonetisation as consumers postponed their buying decisions not only in real estate but across all the sectors,” realtors’ apex body CREDAI President Getamber Anand told.

Sales in the primary market have started to improve, with banks lowering interest rates on home loans, he said, adding that it will take some time for revival in the secondary market where buyers need to reengineer investment strategy.

Top developer DLF’s CEO Rajeev Talwar said the real effect of demonetisation will be that secondary sales would also become like primary sales and transactions will happen through banking channels. “Real estate will become totally transparent,” he added.

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