Home Buyers Speak : 'Invest In Real Estate For Long-Term Returns'
Born in Delhi and raised in Kolkata, Priyanka Bajaj returned to Delhi to undertake further study and finally settled here. She lives with her husband, Sachin Bajaj, and their five-year-old son, Vihaan Bajaj, in Pitampura. She loves dance and music. Priyanka says that she has been living in an extended family since her childhood. So, she always aspired to live in a large home where everyone in her family can live together. She recently invested in a new flat in Greater Noida to use the returns from it for buying a larger apartment in Delhi.
When did you buy your flat? Please describe its features.
I booked the flat three years ago. It is a 2BHK flat with a floor space area of approximately 1000 sq. ft. The project is still under construction near Pari Chowk in Greater Noida. When I booked the flat, the construction had not even begun. It is a high rise apartment with 10-11 buildings in the complex. Mine is on the third floor. According to the plan documents, the view is good. But, I will see the apartment only when the construction is completed. It will be up for possession in March 2017.
How did you come to know about this flat?
I bought a resale flat. I heard about it from an acquaintance. A friend's friend had booked it earlier. He wanted to sell it.
How much did you pay for this? How did you manage it?
The total cost of the flat is Rs 30 lakh. I paid Rs 9 lakh as down payment. Since the project is still under construction, the payouts are irregular and not very frequent. We are expected to make the payment only when the construction is under progress. Our payout is Rs 2.7 lakh at six-month intervals. We did not have to make the payment for one and a half years because the construction was delayed for the period.
Why did you think you needed to own a flat?
I consider it an investment because I can invest the financial returns from it in our future home. We live in an extended joint family but our family member work in different parts of Delhi-NCR. My husband and I travel approximately 45 km from Pitampura to Gurgaon for work every day. So, we decided to invest in a flat to channel the financial returns to a larger apartment in a more convenient location.
Did you face any difficulty during the process of buying your home?
There were some unexpected changes along the way. There was a change in the management of the builder. Construction came to a halt for one-and-a-half years. There were changes in construction norms too, and the builder had to raise the floor area by 100 sq ft. It was difficult for us, but it was beneficial too. As construction was delayed, we are not able to sell it and profit from it when we needed it. We were also worried that we would have to pay more for the extra floor area that was being built. But, the builder held a meeting inviting every buyers and promised that they would not raise the price. They also promised not to levy any late payment fee.
Why did you prefer real estate for investment?
When I booked this flat, real estate sector was booming. Earlier, I had invested in mutual funds etc. At that point, I realized that real estate is best asset class to invest in. While we invest, we should be prepared for adverse circumstances. As far as this investment is concerned, I am quite optimistic that this would yield high returns in the long run. The project's proximity to Gautam Budh University and the F1 Track makes it more attractive. The prospect will become even more appealing when more projects come up in its vicinity. Even if I cannot sell it, I can rent it out.
What is your advice to new home buyers?
While investing, buyers should study more about the project, budget, location, and authenticity of the builder, but there are many external factors that factors also influence the results from your real estate investments. We often do not have much control over such external factors. In our case, the developer had to split all properties when he parted ways with his partner. The transition process and changes in government policies lead to delays in the construction of the project. Since we bought the flat as an investment, it did not affect us as much as the people who were looking forward to live in it.