Let’s get straight into this question, which has been a concern among all stakeholders – financial planners, property owners, investors and prospective buyers – over the last few years. And only because real estate, particularly residential, did not yield the same returns as it did during its Golden Era of the early 2000s.
Large foreign funds have expressed an interest to own a share of the Indian real estate pie. Nikko Am Straits Trading Asia, North Carolina Fund, Hwang Asia Pacific REITs and Infrastructure Fund, Eastspring Investments and Canada-based Sentry Global have received SEBI approval to invest in India as developers and real estate investors, revealing the underlying interest in REITs. Our research indicates that continuous institutional flow of funds has provided the initial momentum to REIT.
Entity-level investment is an efficient strategy to get a firmer foothold in the real estate market. It allows a private equity investment firm to not only deploy its capital but also gain synergetic skills in the real estate marketplace. PE firms invariably look for high levels of corporate governance in a real estate development company before deciding to invest in it at an entity level.
According to a World Bank report, India received USD 79 billion in remittances in 2018 – with a sizeable portion going into real estate. NRI investments into Indian real estate are led Indian expatriates from UAE, USA, UK, and Canada. In terms of Indian cities, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai and Delhi-NCR currently attract the lion’s share of NRI investments.
The ancient Chinese curse ‘may you live in interesting times’ certainly has a lot of pertinence to Indian real estate today. These are doubtlessly ‘interesting’ times for the sector, which has transformed significantly over the last decade. The pace of transformation has been accelerated further by the Central Government’s reformative steps aimed at ushering in ‘Acche Din’ to the realty sector.
When it comes to assimilating AI, the Indian property industry is not far behind. From the way property seekers scout for property to offering probable buyers with applicable information to investigating property values – all the phases of property procurement are now powered by AI and machine learning.
Ever since I got into the hitherto-untouched & challenging business of brand rating of Indian real estate developers, I only get the reactions in extreme, depending upon whether the developer has been rated high or low. After all, every builder is a God’s gift to the world of brand, as per his own make-belief metrics.
Competing against DLF, the company won the auction and soon made plans to construct a grant 18-hole golf course surrounded by luxury apartments and villas, to be marketed as the plush “Unitech Golf and Country Club”. Flashy advertisements were immediately published and huge booking amounts were collected from aspiring buyers who looking forward to their dream homes in the project.
Although sustainable real estate is still in a nascent stage in the country, India is actually one of the leading counties when it comes to green buildings development. In fact, India ranks only second after the U.S. in terms of the number of green technology projects and built-up area.
How relevant is the introduction of REITs when it comes to providing a new opportunity to get funds for the Indian real estate industry? Consider first, that India’s real estate has struggled to reduce debt, given that interest rates are among the highest in Asia. And, also consider that REITs will provide investors an opportunity to buy into India’s real estate market – these two aspects are just the basics.