Mumbai’s real estate sector continues to defy all predictions of an impending price correction with a majority of the 15,000 properties offered by the 100-odd developers at their annual pre-Diwali exhibition being in the unaffordable range of
Rs 1 crore upwards.
The Maharashtra Chamber of Housing Industry (MCHI) exhibition has properties in the northern end of Mumbai,such as Mulund and Dahisar,being priced at over Rs 90 lakh. Even one-BHK apartments in citys peripheral areas,such as Kalyan and Vasai,were in the range of Rs 30 lakh and above. While the huge latent demand was evident from the constant stream of people enquiring about the properties,realty experts expressed doubts about where these would translate into sales at the current prices.
The pricing ensured that several buyers had to return disappointed after hours of scouting for a home. We came with a budget of Rs 25 lakh for a one-BHK anywhere up to Mira Road; which we increased to Rs 30 lakh on coming here. But we havent been able to locate a single property within our budget, said Andheri resident Vishal Anand at the end of a long search along with his fiancée Tina. The couple,employed with a private airline,said they have no choice but to wait until prices soften a bit. We were willing to move out of our respective homes in Marol and Mahim post-marriage a few months later and relocate as far as Mira Road. Now,since even that looks difficult,we have no option but to live on rent for the time being, said Tina.
The discounts available were merely cosmetic,with house-hunters saying that it made no real difference to their home buying capacity. For instance,Lodha has offered a Rs 45 per sq ft waiver in its project Casa Rio at Dombivli. Sale executives add that Lodhas upcoming Wadala project 72 East,which was originally priced at Rs 2.4 crore for a 2-BHK and Rs 3 crore for a 3 BHK,are being offered at a discounted rate of Rs 2 crore and Rs 2.8 crore respectively. A handful of developers like Nirmal lifestyle and Sunteck Realty too have offered similar discounts. Developer Sunil Mantri offered a free trip for a couple to Singapore or Kaula Lampur if they book a flat during the four-day exhibition.
Others like Rustomjee slashed rates partially in their newer projects. For instance,Rustomjees two adjoining projects in Bandra east have been priced differently Seasons,the newer of the two,is being offered at a slightly lower rate than the older Oriana,which is under construction.