5.02 lakh under-construction housing units stuck by 2020-end: Report

There were around 5.02 lakh housing units stuck at various stages of construction across the top seven cities by the end of 2020, showed a report by Anarock Property Consultants.

The report noted that a total of 1,132 projects were stuck by the end of the year, compared to 1,322 projects comprising 5.76 lakh unit by the end of 2019.

The total value of present stuck or delayed housing stock is over Rs 4.07 lakh crore, it said.

“For some months, Covid-19 brought construction activity to its knees in 2020, followed by restricted on-site activity. Despite this, as many as 190 stuck or delayed housing projects accounting for over 73,560 units were completed in 2020,” said the Anarock study.

The Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) saw maximum completions of 84 stuck projects comprising 29,750 units in 2020, and now has 1.80 lakh stuck or delayed units worth over Rs 2.02 lakh crore.

Anuj Puri, Chairman of Anarock Property Consultants said: “Project delays have been the bane of the Indian real estate sector over the last decade. Even the implementation of RERA had only a little impact on this.”

Among other factors, the liquidity crunch threw up roadblocks for developers, which is why the government intervened with the creation of the Alternate Investment Fund (AIF) in late 2019 with a corpus of Rs 25,000 crore, he said.

“This last-mile capitalization mechanism couched in the SWAMIH fund has proved to be effective in getting stuck projects going again,” Puri added.

He was of the view that the government and RBI’s liquidity-generation initiatives in 2020 also helped.

“190 projects with over 73,560 units which can finally be handed over to their purchasers or marketed as ready-to-move options getting completed in the year is especially remarkable considering the backdrop of the unique Covid-19 impact on construction activity,” he said.

The Anarock data revealed that NCR and MMR together hold a 74 per cent majority share of currently stuck or delayed units, while the southern metros of Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad account for a mere 8 per cent. Pune has around 16 per cent share, while Kolkata accounts for a minuscule 2 per cent overall share of stuck or delayed projects.