Realty Firms Hope for Housing Sales Revival Post-Rate Cut

New Delhi: Interest on home loans is expected to come down helping a revival of housing sales following the Reserve Bank of India’s lowering of policy rate by 0.25 per cent today, say realty experts.

The RBI has reduced the short-term lending rate by 0.25 per cent to 6.5 per cent. The total reduction is now 1.5 per cent since January last year.

CREDAI president Getamber Anand said the realty industry body is very hopeful that home buyers would get at least a 50 basis point cut in home loan rates, which would benefit the sector.

“In the interest of economic growth in India, the RBI Governor could have reduced key policy rate by 50 basis points and brought in lower borrowing cost in India,” said Rajeev Talwar, CEO of DLF, India’s largest realty firm.

However, he said that even 25 basis point cut is a very good signal for pushing up of housing demand.

Realty sector is facing a huge slowdown for last 3-4 years, leading to a significant delays in possession of flats to customers.

“The rate cut is likely to help lower borrowing costs and support growth further in 2016. For the real estate sector this is particularly critical,” said Anshuman Magazine, South Asia CMD at property consultant CBRE.

“It is expected that this benefit will be completely transferred to the borrowers, which will result in lower lending rates thus helping to revive housing sales.”

JLL India chairman and country head Anuj Puri said, “Real estate, along with automobile and banking, is an interest rate sensitive sector, and definitely benefits from interest rate reductions.”

“While on one hand, developers are doing all they can to ensure that homes become more affordable to a larger set of buyers, small steps towards rate cuts by RBI will help banks to attract genuine end-user home buyers,” he added.

Hoping that the banks would pass on the benefit to the consumers, Knight Frank (India) CMD Shishir Baijal said the cut in repo rate would provide a huge fillip to realty sector.

SARE Homes MD Vineet Relia said the RBI move would spur demand in the sluggish housing market. CEO Jason Kothari said the rate cut will have a positive impact on home buying “provided the banks heed the RBI’s recommendation for a ‘better translation of its policy actions, into the lending rates by banks'”.

“The latest rate cut of 25 basis points together with RERA bill being implemented should give a boost to the real estate sector. Given the positive trend we expect the housing demand to grow,” said Yash Gupta, country head at Hines India.

Supertech chairman R K Arora said the RBI move will encourage investments and help create demand.

“In order to have major impact, a 50-basis-point correction would have been ideal. Nevertheless, this rate cut, if passed on by commercial banks, would have a positive effect on the real estate sector in the form of lower home loan interest, lower construction cost or cost of debt,” Cushman & Wakefield India MD Sanjay Dutt said.

The residential sector could see greater optimism and result in higher numbers of enquiries in the coming months, he said, adding that developers would also benefit from lower cost of debt.

Omaxe CEO Mohit Goel said the RBI’s measures would reduce the cost of funds for banks and the benefits should be passed on to consumers by the banks, benefiting the entire economy.

“We appreciate the RBI’s move as the cut will help in reducing interest rates during the festive season. We expect home buyers will be benefited due to this cut,” HDIL senior vice president-finance Hariprakash Pandey said.

Mumbai-based Raheja Universal’s managing director, Ashish Raheja, said this move would surely have a positive impact on the economy as well as across sectors.

Prajapati Constrictions managing director Rajesh Prajapati said it would have been much more beneficial had the RBI reduced the repo rate by 50 bps, which in turn, would have facilitated the banks to further reduce the rate of interest.

CHD Developers MD Gaurav Mittal said the central bank’s decision to reduce repo rate by 25 basis points will make home loans cheaper, which in turn would boost housing demand.

“This is a good development and a welcome move, since easing interest rate will help revive health of businesses like Real-Estate which are highly sensitive to interest rate movement,” ABA Corp director Amit Modi said.

Rishabh Group CMD Sanjeev Jain and Hawelia group chairman Rattan Hawelia said the easing of interest rate would have a positive impact on the overall sentiments of the property market and boost housing demand.

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