Now is the time for women homebuyers

By Shehzin Sheikh

Well aware of the tax benefits and more aware of their financial habits, women are now warming up to the idea of ​​real estate as an investment asset

Due to exorbitant real estate prices and high interest rates on home loans, Sanjyot Kulkarni (40) thought her dream of home ownership would always be out of reach – but that all changed after the covid outbreak.

Kulkarni admits she was hesitant to tackle this major milestone in her life at a time when site inspections had become difficult and the fear of catching the virus was real. “But with interest rates on mortgages at historic lows and house prices down almost 10%, I decided not to wait any longer.

In addition, a house not only gives a sense of security, but also economic benefits. Therefore, I went ahead and booked my dream home as soon as the first wave started to recede,” she adds.

Like Kulkarni, more and more women are buying homes for end use or investment. According to the latest Anarock Consumer Sentiment Survey, real estate is now the preferred investment asset class of 64% of female respondents; it was 62% in the last study (H2 2020) and 57% in the pre-covid survey (H2 2019). “Women today portray an immense desire for financial independence, security and stability. They desire to lead ambitious lives and want a better standard of living for their families and themselves, and they achieve this through their ‘own’ home. Plus, their home building skills make them the most detail-oriented home buyers,” says Raunika MalhotraChairman – Marketing and Corporate Communications of a real estate company headquartered in Mumbai.

To build a better life

Women have always played an important role in the home buying decision-making process. However, over the years we have seen women evolve from a “housewife” to a “house buyer”. “There has been a steady increase in the number of women entering the workforce over the past decades. Furthermore, as educational and employment opportunities for women increase, so does their purchasing power. And as women increasingly make their own financial decisions, the number of female homebuyers is on the rise. Plus, the house gives you a sense of confidence, allows you to create a personal sanctuary, and saves you from having to move every year,” adds Adhil ShettyCEO, Bank Bazaar.

“Increasingly, women are also buying houses as they are motivated by the dual benefits of capital appreciation and rental income. Integrated townships have also provided opportunities to ‘walk to work’, thus enabling more women in India to continue or return to work.Similarly, work from home options have also placed greater emphasis on owning or expanding homes. that owning a home makes them less vulnerable to exploitation and is an asset that can meet their needs at different stages of their lives,” says Parveen Mahtanilegal director of a real estate and infrastructure development company.

Incentives Galore

Many incentives are deployed by developers, regulators and financial institutions to encourage women to invest in real estate. For example, stamp duties are lower if the property registration is performed in a woman’s name, although these fees vary from state to state. “The Maharashtra Government in its 2021-2022 budget announced a reduction of 1% on stamp duty if an apartment is purchased by a woman. So instead of the 5% stamp duty in Mumbai, if a woman only buys the property, she will end up paying 4%. In addition, various government policies also encourage home ownership in India. For example, to benefit from housing under the government’s flagship program Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY), houses must be registered either in the name of a woman or with women co-owners. This was done to empower especially women from low-income segments,” says hard parikhPartner, Khaitan & Co.

Almost all lenders offer reduced interest rates (in the range of 5 to 10 basis points) on women’s home loans. “While that may seem like a very small number, lower policy rates have in turn translated into lower lending rates from banks and financial institutions. And those lower rates translate into lower EMIs. for female borrowers and the length of the loan can result in significant savings on interest payments,” adds Shetty.

– Times Property

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