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Housing Dream Gets Real Image Credit: Outlook Money
Housing Dream Gets Real Image Credit: Outlook Money

Housing Dream Gets Real

For scores of Indians, the dream to own a house may just have got the necessary push with this Budget.

Preeti Kulkarni

A 2016 report on the affordable housing space by real estate consultancy Cushman & Wakefield, indicated a 100 per cent rise in new launches in the first half of 2016 (H1 2016), in the affordable housing segment. If one goes by the announcements made by finance minister Arun Jaitley in his 2017 Budget speech, the thrust on affordable housing has the potential to fulfil every Indian’s aspiration of owning a house. Industry players in the segment and observers of the sector believe that granting infrastructure status to the segment will bring the housing dream within many home-seekers’ reach.

“Easy and dedicated access to institutional financing, higher limit on external commercial borrowings will attract more investments and assure sustained growth of affordable housing in India, making it the core driving segment for real estate,” says Brotin Banerjee, CEO and MD, Tata Housing. The speculative trend in the real estate sector ended post the financial crisis in 2008, which also changed for the good lending norms for both builder and buyers. Several delayed projects also changed the appetite for buyers from bigger homes to smaller homes, as realty buyers started scouting for homes instead of speculators.

Drivers of change

The definition of what qualifies as affordable housing and preferential lending to this segment have resulted in an increased demand for

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