2018 has been a mixed bag for the Real Estate Sector. During 2018, two time increase in repo rate followed by unchanged rate towards year end stagnated the demand in real estate sector. While disruptive changes like demonetization and other factors like delayed deliveries, false commitments and unjustifiable price hike were crucial reason for decreased demands in real estate sector. However with RERA coming in there is a silver lining for the customers which probably will improve the situation and slope of demand for properties in coming years.
With RBI Policy in February 2019 cutting the repo rate followed by interim budget falling on favorable curve, 2019 is expected to show sign of revival in sale of properties. In recent interim budget, the relief given to taxpayers in terms of increased slab of tax-rebate to Rs. 5 lakh, and increased standard deduction, will surely result in saving surplus and investible funds at the individual level which may pick up demands for real estate. Further, for the house owners, the benefit of rollover of capital tax gains for investment in one residential house to that in two residential house will attract the retail investment in real estate sector. Also, exemption from levy on tax on notional inventories has been extended to two years.
Post RERA, developers are focused on completing projects and this trend is expected to continue and rule 2019. Increased demands for ready-to-move-in flats is also considered as an important reason for this change. Factors such as affordable housing schemes, easy home loans by the banks and rise in the Income has influenced consumer behavior to invest in property rather than paying rents in turn affecting sale of unsold inventories for the builders. With the substantial increase in baseline salary packages, high living cost, property as investment instrument with least uncertainties will reform the way real estate market was considered till previous year.
It might take a while before property demand fully revives. Data show that the economic growth has picked up momentum. If the growth sustains, it will fuel demand for property in coming years.