Real Estate in Post-COVID World
The COVID-19 crisis has affected almost all business segments, and real estate is no exception. Changing lifestyles and spending habits of buyers have given rise to innovative trends in marketing. The real estate industry is undergoing a tremendous transformation, and these changing trends will directly affect both buyers and developers alike. Despite the uncertainties in the economy, the market has witnessed considerable growth in the past year. Let's now look at the changes that are likely to happen in the real estate sector in the post-COVID scenario.
Owing to the increasing use of technology and online media, realtors are now focusing more on enhancing their digital presence than ever before. It’s proven that digital media platforms ensure business continuity for real estate companies despite the ongoing crisis. Users have become well-adapted to mobile phones and other gadgets through which they gain access to a large pool of information about properties. To keep up with this trend, most of the developers are now adopting a digital-first marketing approach to tap more customers online. Google and social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter & Instagram have become the most popular marketing channels for realtors. Digitalization will play an important role in fueling the growth of Indian real estate sector.
Technology is constantly evolving, and there is a continuous scope for innovation across all business segments. In the real estate business sector also, product innovation plays a key role in business success. Nowadays various technological developments are enabling builders to maintain resilience and business stability. The post-COVID world will demand a higher measure of safety and sanitation within the housing premises. For this, builders may have to think ahead and incorporate structural and operational changes within the projects. The latest technologies like artificial intelligence and virtual reality are likely to become handy when it comes to developing futuristic projects.
Revised Govt Policies
The government has taken various measures to support the real estate sector during the corona crisis. A special economic package of Rs 20 Lakh Crore has been announced by the Prime Minister with an aim to make India self-reliant. Following are a few amendments put forward by the government during the past year to boost the growth of the real estate sector.
- The finance department had announced a one-year extension of PMAY Scheme which is a Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme (CLSS) for the middle-income group. The last date for availing this scheme was changed from 31st March 2020 to 31 March 2021. This rule amendment is expected to benefit an additional 2.5 Lakh people who are in the Lower & Middle-Income segment.
- The finance ministry has announced various incentives to strengthen the construction and housing sector in India. All central agency contracts have been extended by up to 6 months and take measures to ease cash flows for contractors.
- To strengthen the affordable housing segment, the government has announced affordable rental accommodation schemes for migrant workers and the poor. Various incentives will be offered to manufacturing units and other industries to build such affordable housing units.
- To provide some relief to developers who are struggling to complete the project within the RERA stipulated timelines, a six-month extension will be given considering COVID-19 as an ‘Act of God’ and ‘Force Majeure’.
- The government has launched a ₹30,000-crore special liquidity scheme for non-banking financial institutions to provide credit support to the sector amid the coronavirus crisis. Under the Rs 30,000 crore special liquidity scheme, the minister said investments will be made in both primary and secondary market transactions in investment-grade debt papers of these institutions. This will help to provide liquidity support to these companies.
With these changing market trends, the realty sector is not going to be the same in the post-COVID world. Moreover, the concept of owning a home has gained much importance in these uncertain times. People have become more aware of the perks of owning a property as home is a place one can feel the safest. The pandemic season has changed the way people live, work & play and all this will have a collective impact on the demand in the housing segment. Commercial real estate will also witness drastic changes in terms of investment and construction methods. Thankfully the real estate sector in India responds to these changes quickly and adapts to newer technologies without much resistance. We hope that once the situation gets better, the industry will bounce back with more vigour.