Developers Bet Big on ‘Online Home Sales’, Experts Dubious

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Post By By Buniyad


Home buying has always been a complex affair as buying property is not something done on impulse, it is rather one of the biggest transaction of a lifetime & a research-driven phenomenon undeniably. The home selling and buying process considerably involves lengthy booking processes, fraudulent incidents and lack of trust on developers which has altogether made the affair awful. On the contrary, the e-commerce platform facilitates advantages to a great extent to the developers and buyers. The online world helps in making the purchase of homes more effective with no involvement of the middlemen, the convenience of booking & making payments is also witnessed via this platform unlike traditional media. Additionally, the online transactions necessitates a tracking mechanism and in turn cuts down black money circulation, for which the sector is ill-famed for. The buyers can moreover explore the details of the projects, builders and can go through the reviews on the same, resulting to hassle-free transactions. On the other hand, developers can also interact with the buyers and receive feedback post their project launches.

In order to gauge whether the online property research and lucrative options/deals offered by the developers have influence home buying decisions of the buyers or not?- “52% of home decisions are influenced by internet research, be it the virtual walk through, 3D rendering of properties or to facilitate the site visits or even the handling of documentation, these property portals have made it much convenient & easy for the customers to choose property,” mentioned by a June report by Google India. Furthermore, Godrej Group, Tata Value Housing and Puravankara’s projects are the latest to consider online sales and 25% of the business is considerably coming from the digital medium, says Girish Shah, Executive Vice President of Godrej Properties.

In this context, Senior Vice President–Marketing & Sales, Tata Housing Development Company, Harikesh mentions, Tata has already sold a million sqft of residential space wherein 700 home bookings worth 300 crore were done online, which includes both online bookings and sales coming from online channel. Today, almost 40-45 per cent of our sales comes from online channel.
Taking everything into account, online real estate concept is on the verge of getting matured and the developers agree that once it matures and if the medium is leveraged appropriately, thereafter a 15 per cent of hike can be witnessed in the sales volume.
Indian shoppers have been buying accessories, gadgets, appliances, apparels, books etc and exploring & enquiring about properties online. It wont take long to before rapid urbanization and lifestyle changes will lead to people buying products like real estate and cars online.

Moreover, the Developers can show live videos of the site which enhances transparency and is cost effective as well for both the developer and the client. They will aslo get an ease of reach out to customers in tier-2 cities and NRI market, which remains largely untapped, according to Arun Kumar, Managing Director, Casa Grande Pvt Ltd.

Deepak Kapoor, Director, Gulshan Homz said, the developers having found a new way to approach sales, the concept as of now has mixed reviews altogether. In addition to this, with the huge amount of monetary transaction being involved, the customers wont easily be enticed by the online schemes.

The concept has to be given a comprehensively developed & well-balanced structure. The buyers will demand a quick, safe and secure payment gateway and the developers are to be responsible for assuring the clients for transparent, authentic and ethical dealing- conformity to the law or ability to be defended with honesty and justification, cited Pradeep Aggarwal, Chairman, Signature Global. Thus, a span of three years approximately is anticipated for the concept to take a flight.

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