Developers vie to attract NRIs
Bollywood actor Arbaaz Khan inaugurates the Indian Property Show in Dubai on Tuesday. The show runs till Thursday and features over 600 projects in India from 170 developers.
Builders sweeten Indian property deals with on-the-spot discounts and offers
Visitors to the Indian Property Show can keep a chequebook handy. Developers have a myriad of discounts and other incentives to offer visitors who make a spot booking or an upfront payment on property.
The exhibition, however, opened to a tepid visitor response at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Tuesday. The three-day property show is expected to build more momentum as visitors capitalise on the long weekend.
The exhibition was inaugurated by Bollywood actor Arbaaz Khan and features over 170 developers showcasing around 600 projects. The event runs until Thursday and will remain open from 11am to 8pm. As an incentive, entry is free with provision for free parking.
There is a wide spectrum of projects on display, ranging from super-luxury penthouses and villas, mid-luxury apartments, luxury senior citizen residences to fully developed affordable plots.
Currently, non-resident Indians (NRIs) feature among the top five investor groups in India's property sector. Apart from their natural affinity to India, purchase decisions are also being driven by the Indian rupee's weakness against the US dollar, to which the dirham is pegged.
Sunil Jaiswal, president of event organisers Sumansa Exhibitions, said: "With the rupee depreciating 20 per cent to the US dollar, this is a good time for NRIs to invest in Indian property. The other driving force is that real estate is one of the fastest-growing sectors in India with higher returns on property."
According to Devendra Singh, head of international sales (GCC), Mahindra Lifespaces: "It's a buyer's market in India now. It is a very good time to pick up a project. Developers are willing to offer incentives such as stamp duty waiver or deferred payment schemes."
While Mumbai, Bengaluru and Pune are still the most popular cities for NRI investments, investors are also showing increasing interest in cities like Chennai and Hyderabad, where they find higher chance of capital appreciation.
Developers are trying to attract visitors with deferred payment plans and on-the-spot discounts. There is also a renewed focus on affordable housing.
For instance, Mahindra Lifespaces has launched a separate affordable housing division called Happinest. It is displaying projects in Boisar (Mumbai) and Avadi (Chennai) where apartment costs begin from Rs1.1 million.
Shapoorji Pallonji has also made a foray into affordable housing with a project in Kolkata called Home Next. Prices begin from Rs2 million and goes up to Rs5 million, said Cyrus Engineer, senior vice-president of sales and marketing.
Indian property behemoths exhibiting at the event inclde Indiabulls, Bhartiya City, Lodha Group, L&T, Mantri Developers, Shapoorji Pallonji and Godrej, among others. They are showcasing projects in cities such as Delhi, Gurgaon, Kolkata, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad and Bengaluru. The event offers visitors a chance to win an apartment worth Rs2.5 million and return air tickets to India.
Bollywood actor Arbaaz Khan inaugurates the Indian Property Show in Dubai on Tuesday. The show runs till Thursday and features over 600 projects in India from 170 developers. — Photos by Shihab