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Union Budget 2021-22 - Reaction from Real Estate Developers

Posted On: 2021-02-01 09:42:03 (Time Zone: Arizona, USA)


Dhruv Agarwala, Group CEO, Housing.com, Makaan.com and Proptiger.com

"Amid a sharp improvement in consumer sentiment with regard to property purchases post the start of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, the government's move in the Budget to extend the benefit of additional Rs 1.5 lakh tax deduction on home loan interest, until March 31, 2022, will act as a further impetus to the residential property sector. This move will augur well, especially for the affordable housing segment, which will also benefit from the decision to offer a tax holiday for affordable housing projects for one more year, to boost supply.

The support announced today by the Honourable Finance Minister for rental housing too will go a long way in boosting the real estate market and will ease a lot of pressure points in the rental home market. This will also help migrant workers to a great extent and will support them in remaining in metros and other big cities during times of financial hardships such as the one presented by the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the long-standing demand of the real estate industry to expand the definition of affordable housing so as to include homes priced more than Rs 45 lakhs in big metro cities, has sadly not been addressed.

The infusion of lakhs of crores into India's infrastructure segment, with a focus on improving connectivity, will be particularly beneficial for India's housing sector. The proposed debt financing for REITs and InvITs, and the setting up of the Development Financial Institution for augmenting funds for infra and the real estate sector is expected to provide a major fillip to the sector, and will attract more investments in the sector.

Mr Mohit Goel, CEO, Omaxe Limited

We welcome Budget 2021-22 which lays greater emphasis and outlay on the health, manufacturing and infrastructure sector with an aim to create jobs and boost the economy. State Capitals and tier 2/3 cities will benefit immensely from the government's focus on sectors like roads and highways, ports, power, urban infrastructure, railways. Add to it, the affordable housing boost, by extending tax holiday for such projects by one year, extending by one year the deadline for first time homebuyers to avail additional Rs 1,50,000 interest deduction on home loan and tax exemption for affordable rental housing, will further boost demand for housing in these cities.

Mr. Ankit Kansal, Founder and MD, 360 Realtors

The union budget has reiterated the government's focus on Affordable Housing through concentrated policy impetus in the form of tax exemptions and tax holidays. Another good thing discussed in the budget is the multilayered support to infrastructure. The Budget has announced a host of policies and initiatives to boost urban development, enhance urban infrastructure, monetize freight corridors, upscale power generation capacity, and commence work on numerous large scale roadway & railway projects. The government has also announced huge allocations in the urban Swachh Bharat mission 2.0. These initiatives will boost the overall infrastructure, increase economic productivity, improve the livability index of urban cities alongside building real estate demand in Indian urban corridors.

Mr. Prasoon Chauhan, Founder & CEO of BlackOpal Group

"After the announcement of easing norms for InvITs/REITs, we are hoping that steps will be taken to regarding the lock-in period of units allotted on a preferential basis, and pricing related to the allotments arising out of the approval of the same unit holders. We are sure that the fresh norms will make more REITs to enter the market as the demand for commercial properties is already high, especially after the pandemic situation that has led people to realize the sound investment opportunity that commercial segment offers. The FM has also announced a new asset reconstruction and asset management company, which is set to ease out the liquidity issue in the market.

Overall, the Budget focused on jobs and fund infusion in MSMEs, which would help the market recover. The real estate sector, being an inseparable part of the economic growth, will also gain from the measures taken to expedite growth in other industries."

Pradeep Aggarwal, Founder & Chairman, Signature Global and Chairman, National Council on Affordable Housing, ASSOCHAM

"In Real Estate sector, Affordable Housing is set to get boost from the tax holiday being extended for one more year till March 31, 2022 and Rs1.5 lakh for interest paid on loans to purchase an affordable house being extended another year. The demand for affordable housing is at an all time high, and we will focus on fulfilling it. we will keep contributing to PM Shri Narendra Modi's mission of 'Housing For All'. The focus of the government on infrastructural development and MSMEs will lead to job creation, which will help people get financially stable. Looking at the experience of people in last one year, affordable housing will get more buyers as people want to secure their lives by owning a home"

Amit Modi, Director, ABA Corp & President (Elect), CREDAI - Western UP

Over all it's a positive budget and we appreciate the huge push towards national infrastructure, with nearly 217 projects worth over Rs 1 lakh crore to be completed under National Infrastructure Pipeline and feel this will really stimulate the national economic cycle, while directly benefiting the rural and urban employment along with indirect job creation in infra related allied industries. There has also been a prioritisation of Affordable housing segment, mainly due to the one-year extension in Tax Holiday for developers of affordable housing projects, along with additional exemption of Rs 1.5 Lakhs for affordable home buyers till March 2022. We are also looking forward to Introduction of a bill to set-up a development finance institution, and await the finer-print on utilization of Rs 20,000 crore capitalisation, whereby up Rs 5 lakh crore will be lent by DFI in next three years' time. At the same time, we feel that inclusion of low hanging fruits like Single Window Clearance and Industry Status for the Real Estate Sector, along with the much-anticipated increase in rebate on Home Loans for home buyers, would have really brought much needed positive push that the sector was expecting.

The proposed extension of the tax holiday for start-ups by one more year, a tax exemption for relocating funds to IFSC, and a tax holiday for the aircraft leasing business in GIFT city, are some of the other measures that would also help India's real estate sector as a whole."

Mr. Yash Miglani, MD, Migsun Group

"The budget announcement made today by the Honorable Finance Minister are indeed progressive and will help the industry in many ways. The affordable homes market has potential to take care of the housing problem of the citizens of the country to a large extent. The real estate industry is at the cusp of transition in the country and the twin announcement by the FM on rental housing and affordable housing both will provide a lot of support to the sector at this juncture. However, the government could have done more to alleviate the some if the pandemic inflicted pains for the industry which is unfortunately missing. The pandemic has dealt a heavy blow to the industry and any short-term easy financing solution for the developers could have made the deal sweeter"

Achal Raina, COO, Raheja Developers

There were hopes in the Budget for real estate as some of the announcements by the government will increase the demand for *Affordable housing and REIT compliant projects.

The developers needed measures that can help them in developing the projects on time such as help in loans from banks, single-window clearance, ITC benefit, etc. These topics were not touched upon by the FM and we expect that the government will take care of these soon. The FM has announced measures that might streamline the funds; the real estate sector need financing for incomplete viable projects, and we hope that banks will extend help to the realty sector".

Ashok Gupta, CMD, Ajnara India

"The Finance Minister has rightly given an extension to the additional Rs 1.5 lakh tax deduction on home loan interest till March 2022. This will give a shot in the arm of the real estate developers, especially those who are engaged in providing affordable housing options for the people. This measure was introduced by the FM in July 2019 and has already determined its ability to be a game changer in the affordable homes market. The move to exempt notified affordable rental projects from taxes is also a welcome step in the ,light of the scenario we are confronted with today with a number of migrant workers finding it difficult to find a home for themselves within their budget. In terms of specific relief to the industry which has faced a lot of hardships during the pandemic, there is little to cheer about in this Budget.

Mr Aditya Chamaria, Managing Director, Damodar Ropeways & Infra Limited

Budget 2021 has been labelled as the budget for 'Aatmanirbhar Bharat'. This budget has been unique in terms of highest ever allocation of NHAI - of Rs 1,18,101 crores. Government aims to complete 11,000km of national highway infrastructure this year. This extended support to boost infrastructure is going to be indirectly boosting the tourism sector with improved connectivity, it would also lead to increased job opportunities in the infrastructure sector leading to improvement in employment conditions for the laborers. Reforms such as GST to get reduced were expected from government to promote eco-friendly mode of travel and transportation such as ropeways

Mr. Vikas Garg, Deputy Managing Director, MRG World

"Government's focus and commitment for the real estate industry can clearly be gauged for the announcement made by the Finance Minister Niramala Sitharaman today. The affordable housing has emerged as important segment of the realty industry and FM has rightly address the biggest concern of the developers and buyers of such projects. Even the rental housing design of the government will solve the problem of residences for migrant workers to a great extent. The push to infrastructure will also benefit the real estate industry indirectly as better infrastructure in the country will help in real estate projects spreading out of compact city limits. A little bit of clarity on Input Tax Credit would have made the matters even better for the industry. All in all, it's a good budget for the real estate industry.

Mr Manoj Gaur, CMD, Gaurs Group

The announcements regarding the development of highways, electrification, migrant workers, will strengthen the economy and start the recovery process. The focus on infrastructure and job creation will indirectly benefit the real estate sector. As expected, Affordable Housing was once again the focus as the Government is moving towards 'Housing for all'. The relaxations such as tax holiday for one more year will go a long way in helping the segment prosper. Elimination of double tax for NRIs on foreign retirement funds will encourage NRIs to invest in real estate assets. Though the number of announcements regarding the real estate sector was few, the sector is all set to gain from the measures taken to strengthen the economy through job creation and asset management. The players in affordable housing segment will get encouragement from tax holiday being extended for one more year; we would see more developers entering the segment in the coming year. The buyers also got benefit when the government extended Rs 1.5 loans to purchase affordable house by one year. But, the long standing demand of giving industry status to the sector has again been ignored.

Kapil Kapur, Director-Sales, Strategy & Business Development, Bullmen Realty

"The Budget announcement made by the Finance Minister today addresses an important problem in the real estate industry today, i.e. housing for the migrant workers. The decision to provide exemption from tax to the notified affordable rental housing projects will maximize the migrant workers to get a home of their choice in a big city at lower payment. However, the government did not address the long pending demand of the industry to expand the definition of affordable house. The present limit of Rs 45 lakhs as the price of a house to be called affordable is too small and must have been raised to Rs 75 lakhs.

Nagaraju Routhu, CEO, Hero Realty

The budget comes as a relief for the reeling economy post pandemic brought a one of kind slowdown. FM has tried to extend support to sectors that raises demand and improves consumer sentiment with the much-needed stimulus. The strong push given to infrastructure with promises of delivering highway infra work of around 8,500-km of highways by March 2022 will be directly or indirectly benefiting the real estate sector. We were hoping this budget would address issues of single window clearance and industry status to the sector, but that has been left untouched. We are looking forward that government will direct attention towards these demands, which are unanimously being asked by the real estate community. An additional support by government with proposed easing of InvITs/REITs, will be helpful in getting new REITs and attracting fresh investments in the real estate sector.

Raman Gupta, Director- branding & construction, GBP Group

The Union Budget was highly awaited by the developer's community.The real estate industry is at the cusp of transition in the country, therefore the long standing demands of the sector such as single window clearance, industry status and input tax credit needed government's attention, though they remain unaddressed by FM. The support extended to infrastructure sector is expected to bring some indirect benefits to real estate sector in terms of better connectivity and increase in job opportunities for laborers/construction workers.

Mr. Abhishek Bansal, Executive Director, Pacific Group

The Budget announcements made today are pro-real estate industry and addresses some of the concerns of the sector. These measures announced today will provide a lot of relief to the industry which has been badly bruised by the pandemic. With these announcement, the government will be able to move closer to achieving its goal of 'Housing For All' by 2022. Providing more money to the banks and recapitalizing them will also help the real estate indirectly. However, commercial and retail segment of real estate industry has little to be excited about the Budget announcements

Vijay Verma, CEO, Sunworld Group -

The sector can benefit indirectly from Rs 15,700 crore for MSME in FY22 and Rs 1.97 trillion committed to manufacturing sector for the next five years. After a tumultuous year, it was important to pump in budget for job creation and strengthening the job-creating sectors and the government has tried to achieve that. The real estate sector is the largest employer and it was hoping for some direct measures, but the Budget turned out to be disappointing. However, the sector will grow with the economy and we are looking for some positive announcements in the coming months.

Mr. Kushagr Ansal,Director, Ansal Housing Limited and President, CREDAI - Haryana-

The Union Budget 2021-22 will be laying down the roadmap for growth and heightened recovery in the real estate. The extended support given to infrastructure will generate a higher degree of job opportunities for Tier II cities, leading to growth in population and higher demand for residential as well as commercial projects.As expected, the affordable housing has emerged as important segment of the realty industry and FM has duly addressed the biggest concern of the developers and buyers of such projects. Even the rental housing design proposed by the government will solve the problem of residences for migrant workers to a great extent.

Mr. Prateek Mittal, Executive Director, Sushma Group

The extended support given to infrastructure will generate a higher degree of job opportunities for Tier II cities, leading to growth in population and higher demand for residential and commercial real estate. The support extended to migrant workers, in form of a portal for migrant workers building & construction work has been a positive move in ensuring their safety.

Mr Uddhav Poddar, MD, Bhumika Group

"The FM has proposed easing of InvITs/REITs, which will help in getting new REITs and attracting fresh investments in the real estate sector.

The creation of a development financial institution is another good announcement as this sector has been suffering due to paucity of patient capital.

It is heartening to see Governments focus towards "housing for all" and accordingly the government has made announcements regarding affordable housing such as to extend eligibility of erstwhile tax sop on home loan up to FY22 and offer tax exemption for notified affordable rental housing projects. We too plan on entering the affordable housing sector this year.

Lastly the creation of bad assets bank / ARC along with recapitalisation of banks are both much needed moves which will help sort out the banking woes to a great extent."


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