Biggest drop in housing prices in a decade

Residential sales in H2 2017 were 19% better than H2 2016 Knight Frank

"The residential market also witnessed a drop of 86 per cent and 56 per cent in the half yearly launches and sales respectively, from the peak levels during H1 2011". "As the RERA act is yet to be implemented in full spirit, the industry had suffered". Lot of demand from investors over the year is out of the market now and only genuine buyers are driving the market.

"Select markets wherein Rera has matured, have seen developers re-launch projects at attractive prices which led to an uptick in sales in 2017. The market is also performing well and it is an indicator of a revival", Puranik said.

The city of the erstwhile Nizams may have bucked the trend of dipping home prices-prices actually moved up 3% compared to 2016 due to the high proportion of ready inventory-but homebuyers still have reason to cheer. Moreover, the share of affordable homes in the new projects-those in the Rs 50 lakh bracket-have shot up from 53% in 2016 to 83% in 2017.

Ranjit Naiknavare, secretary, CREDAI and director, Naiknavare Constructions, said, "Our data suggests that there was a drop of 26 per cent in launches".

Homebuyers have a narrow window of opportunity though, because the West Bengal Housing Industry Regulation Bill (HIRA) 2017, already passed by the State Assembly a year ago, is expected to be notified soon. The average sales rates are 3,706/sqft in Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA), 4,763/ sqft in Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) and 7,075/sqft in Pune Municipal Corporation areas. Flats are effectively being offered at a discount of 11-12 percent on the original price.

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The Indian property market will continue to face headwinds this year and no hardening of prices is expected, according to Knight Frank. The age of unsold inventory is a matter of concern, said Krishnan.

"The office market has witnessed newfound buoyancy with new completions recording double digit growth for the first time since 2012".

On residential takeaways, the estate agency said that residential sales in H2 2017 were 19% better than demonetisation-hit H2 2016.

According to a report released by Knight Frank, political instability, recurring natural calamities and gloom in market sentiments stagnated signs of recovery noticed in the first half of the 2017 and Chennai residential real estate market recorded new lows in terms of new launches and sales of residential units during the second half of 2017. "The pace at which developers align themselves to the new regulatory norms and launch new products in the right ticket sizes that appeal to the homebuyer's interests, will determine the trajectory of the market going forward".

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