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Residential realty market sees 30 per cent rise in sales

MUMBAI: The Reserve Bank of India may not have reduced the interest rates, but residential property sales seem to have caught momentum with increased new launches at lower rates and incentives offered by developers. 

The revival in the property market, however, is not certain yet as inventory levels continue to be high. Housing sales volume in top six cities of the country saw an average growth of 30% year-on-year in the three months to September, according to a report by Liases Foras Real Estate Rating and Research. Surprisingly, housing prices in these markets also saw an average 20% jump from a year ago. 

In Mumbai, the most expensive property market, the sales volume growth has been the slowest at 7%, while Bangalore and Chennai have witnessed a 70% jump. The National Capital Region of Delhi and Pune have also managed an over 40% year-on-year growth, with the exception of Hyderabad where sales plunged 48%. 

"We can still not call this a revival as only few markets like Bangalore, Pune and Chennai have been performing well as prices are still productive in these markets," said Pankaj Kapoor, managing director of Liases Foras. "However, efficiency is far from optimum level in other markets like Mumbai and NCR." 

He added that a price correction is imminent and, for now, the sales volume growth can only be attributed to launches taking place at lower prices. 

The weighted average price of new launches across these six prime markets during the quarter was 18% lower than the existing supply. 

"Revival is on the cards as realtors are now more in sync with the market's requirement than two years ago," said Sanjay Dutt, executive managing director at Cushman & Wakefield India. "All the new launches are aligned to market demand with smaller ticket sizes, attractive pricing and payment options." 

He also noted that the sentiment and government actions, particularly on approvals front, are positive. Out of the 75 million square feet of housing space launched during the quarter, 52% was in NCR, 14% in Chennai, 12% in Mumbai Metropolitan Region and 10% in Pune. NCR also saw the highest year-on-year jump in prices at 27%, while those in Mumbai rose 14%.