Housing sales this year may touch 2019-level if pandemic remains under control: CREDAI

He expressed concern over the second major wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and said it will take time to assess the impact.

Housing sales that fell 40-50 per cent across 7-8 major cities last year due to the pandemic could bounce back to 2019-level this year, if there is no complete lockdown to curb the second wave of COVID-19, realtors’ body CREDAI said on Wednesday.

Addressing a virtual press conference, CREDAI National President Harsh Vardhan Patodia said housing sales increased during the January-March quarter of 2021 and hoped that the trend will continue over the next nine months.

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He expressed concern over the second major wave of the COVID-19 pandemic and said it will take time to assess the impact.

“We are worried over the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Patodia, who took charge as the President from April 1 this year.

Asked about the outlook for this year considering a fresh wave of coronavirus across the country, he said housing sales rose by 44 per cent in the January-March quarter, as per the Knight Frank India data.
Sales should bounce back to 2019-level provided the pandemic remains under control and there is no imposition of complete lockdown of economic activities as it was seen during April-May last year.

According to Knight Frank India, sales of residential properties fell 37 per cent to 1,54,534 units in 2020 across eight cities as compared to 2,45,861 units in the previous year.

Anaraock had said the total home sales in seven cities declined to 1.38 lakh units in 2020 against 2.61 lakh units in 2019, while PropTiger reported a 47 per cent decline in housing sales to 1,82,639 units in 2020 from 3,47,586 units in 2019.

Patodia, Managing Director of Kolkata-based Unimark group, said CREDAI will again urge the state governments to reduce stamp duty on registration of properties to boost the real estate sector.

The body also reiterated its pending demands with the government, including infrastructure status for the realty sector, GST input tax credit for both housing and commercial segments, faster environment clearance and easier credit availability.

Patodia said CREDAI will facilitate a free COVID-19 vaccination drive for 2.5 crore construction workers at the sites of member developers across India.

The vaccines will be provided following all the government-approved protocols. CREDAI Start-up Angel Network and Incubation & Acceleration Centre will be set up to support tech startups in the real estate space.

The association will also establish its research and analytics centre, which will facilitate the availability of real-time and authentic data for future growth strategies.

Established in 1999, Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India (CREDAI) is the apex body for private real estate developers in India, representing over 13,000 developers through 21 states and 217 city chapters across the country.

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