The Covid pandemic has significantly altered homebuyer preferences with the second wave further impacting priorities. Attractive pricing and developers with established track record are now the top priorities for those looking to purchase their dream home, the latest CII-Anarock consumer sentiment survey revealed.
“While attractive pricing continues to rule the roost of must-haves, established developer credibility is the second-highest priority for 77% of the surveyed buyers. Project design and location also feature prominently on the wish list,” the survey said. It was conducted between January and June 2021 and polled 4,965 participants responding via various digital platforms.
Another noteworthy development is the reliance on digital avenues to help homebuyers choose their favourite property. “From property search to documentation and legal advice to down payments, homebuyers are leveraging the new tidal wave of digital technology driving the Indian housing sector. Only developers with sufficient online presence will remain relevant going forward. Also, social media are among the most effective property marketing platforms at this stage,” Anarock Property Consultants chairman Anuj Puri said.
The survey findings also revealed that for the first time affordable housing is the lowest priority, with more than 34% respondent home seekers focused on properties priced between Rs 90 lakh-2.5 crore. While 35% favour properties priced between Rs 45-90 lakh, just 27% voted in favour of affordable housing (priced
In the previous H2 2020 survey, around 36% respondent property seekers eyed budget housing.
“The budget range which this survey identifies as the hottest seller is a surprise, but it makes sense if we consider that it is precisely this segment of buyers who are least financially impacted by the Covid pandemic. Online home sales are gaining traction, with close to 60% of the entire property buying process now being conducted online — against 39% in the pre-pandemic period,” Puri said.
Around 41% participating property seekers are considering second homes for self-use, of which 53% prefer mountainous regions. Amid the sustained work-from-home and e-schooling realities, over 65% respondents currently working remotely now prefer larger homes, and around 68% aim to relocate to peripheral or suburban areas to buy them.
NRI participants in the survey primarily prefer luxury properties priced between Rs 1.5-2.5 crore. Among the metros, Bengaluru, Pune and Chennai are the hottest NRI picks, while Chandigarh, Kochi and Surat top their tier II and III cities list.
Another interesting finding is that around 71% respondents in the second wave are end-users and only 29% are investors. In the first wave period survey, investors accounted for 41%. A significant factor possibly driving this is the increased desire to acquire second homes in greener, healthier environs during the pandemic-infused lockdowns.