Some Don't Mind Paying Extra To Live Close To A Mall
Urvashi and Meghna Chatterjee, sisters and students of Delhi University, moved to the capital two years back for their higher studies. This time, the rents were high for a city where teeming millions migrate either for work or studies. In fact, most parents are ready to part with their savings for a good house on rent. They stress on the need to 'settle' their wards in popular localities that boast amenities- daily provisions, transport infrastructure, eateries and even malls so that students do not have to travel far for their daily dose of convenience. Kanti Chatterjee, a bank professional and mother of Urvashi and Meghna explains why she was keen on zeroing on an accommodation close to commercial centres. She says, "College students these days are a fun-loving bunch. You can't hold them back. It is better to keep them close to areas that are safe and yet promising in terms of entertainment zones. That will ensure that they do not have to venture far and wide for such things. Hence I chose Jawahar Nagar (Kamla Nagar) in North Campus." Makes sense.
Roopa Iyer, an IT professional in her mid-thirties says she has learned it the hard way. "When I just started off with work, I preferred staying in almost remote areas- remote as in where rents were lower and you could find just the basic amenities. For anything like meeting a friend, an appointment at a salon or even at the doctor's meant that I had to commute around seven to eight kilometres. When I got married and had children, I realised that what I saved was spent on the commute. Almost bi-monthly trips to the pediatrician or for some outdoor family time, we would be wasting quite a lot of energy, money and most of all, time. Hence, now we have moved to Andheri (Mumbai) and the vicinity is quite self-sufficient.
Some of the obvious plus points of staying near commercial centres or even malls are:
- Guaranteed better stay. Whether it is a furnished apartment or swanky lifestyle, most real estate developers understand the value of showcasing lifestyle dwellings in such spaces.
- You can bank on better returns or even a good capital appreciation over the years.
- You can enjoy the benefit of living in the heart of the city or the centre of activity.
- Usually, such places are close to emergency care, fire services, hospitals and police stations, too.
- Not only do commercial centres act as a landmark, these also ensure that public transport and physical infrastructure is the best. It constantly receives attention from both the corporations and government.
- Network issues? Say "No" to such issues. Most business centres depend on high-speed internet. Therefore, internet service providers in such areas are also competitive. Therefore, your chance of getting hold of high-speed internet is also cent percent. If you an internet based startup professional, the location and this amenity would be a great combination.
- Some of the exclusive brands are available only in malls. For all such shopping needs, a house next to such centers may be the best bet.
- Walk to work! If you are a corporate professional, employed in one of these commercial centres or business districts, you could avoid taking out your vehicle.
However, keep in mind that with such facilities come plenty of issues, too. Crowded spaces, busy streets, noise pollution, or even dust in the house due to proximity to the streets can annoy you if weren't prepared for it. Also, while many home buyers would like to live near malls, many others also look for other suburban spaces further away from malls. These are subjective choices. A high work load, social job may require one to look for a sober, no-noise residential zone too. As online sales boost, many retail malls have also lost their significance serving majorly as food courts and clubbing spaces. However, the number of window shoppers – who would check out the product at a store and then buy online at a cost advantage has increased the number of people who flock these malls, adding to roadside congestion and parking issues.
But nothing can make it totally insignificant. In most micro-markets and metropolises today, commercial space vacancy rate is very low implying that while many big occupiers want to enter the market, there is no space for them to make inroads. Hence, if you own some space close to a mall or an important centre, you can weigh the value of such prime real estate asset. In Florida, such spaces have caught the fancy of real estate developers who are keen on developing senior living housing in prime, central areas. The logic behind it is that it will those working professionals wo want to keep their parents close and yet not miss out on the downtown experience. For most empty nesters, this is a good solution too.