‘Nearly 95,000 homes sold across 8 cities in Jul-Dec 2020’

As realty demand picked up after the gradual lifting of the lockdown restrictions, 94,997 housing units were sold across eight major cities in the country during the second half of 2020, showed a report by Knight Frank India.

It noted that as the country moved towards normalcy, residential sales reached almost 54 per cent of the 2019 quarterly average with 33,403 units during Q3 2020 and recovered to almost 100 per cent of pre-Covid levels at 61,593 units in Q4 2020.

Homes priced over Rs 50 lakh made up around 57 per cent of the total sales during H2 2020. While new home launches were lower in H2 2020 by 23 per cent YoY at 86,139 units, Q4 2020 witnessed significant growth of 77 per cent on a quarter-on-quarter basis at 55,033 units.

As per the data, Mumbai and Pune markets led the revival with both sales as well as new launches recovering significantly in the second half of the year. While all India residential sales saw a quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) rise of 84 per cent, Mumbai (193 per cent) and Pune (143 per cent) recorded higher than average QoQ growth.

This was mainly due to the Maharashtra State Government’s initiative to reduce stamp duty by 300 basis points (BPS) for a limited period between September-December 2020 making home buying very attractive, it added.

Shishir Baijal, Chairman and Managing Director, Knight Frank India said: “Despite the on-going pandemic, the H2 2020 sales growth in some cities is fairly encouraging. In Q3 2020, the real estate market started witnessing revival signs, further recording a significant improvement in home sales during Q4 2020.”

He added: “The RBI’s decision to maintain low repo rates has narrowed the margin between rent and home loan EMI paid to banks. Driving house purchase affordability to extremely attractive levels, it has emerged as a major growth driver for the housing sector.”