BACK IN THE RECK­ON­ING

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An­shul Jain

Noida Ex­ten­sion has al­ways been the hub of af­ford­able hous­ing with ini­tial project launches back in 2009-10 at R1800 to R2000 per sq feet. At this cost, the dream of own­ing a home seemed a re­al­ity for most of the po­ten­tial home­buy­ers and a lu­cra­tive in­vest­ment op­por­tu­nity for the in­vestors. How­ever, the land acquisition is­sue (lit­i­ga­tion over the com­pen­sa­tion to farmers) and the Al­la­habad High Court’s order in Oc­to­ber 2011 to get the Greater Noida Mas­ter Plan 2021 ap­proved be­fore con­struc­tion work com­menced, were ma­jor set­backs to the Noida Ex­ten­sion prop­erty mar­ket. De­vel­op­ers as well as buy­ers and in­vestors heaved a sigh of re­lief as the im­passe over the area ended with the ap­proval of the Greater Noida’s Mas­ter Plan-2021 by the NCR Plan­ning Board in Au­gust 2012, clear­ing the way for re­sump­tion of con­struc­tion of hundreds of hous­ing projects halted in the area.

Noida Ex­ten­sion is back in the reck­on­ing again as a lu­cra­tive in­vest­ment des­ti­na­tion in the res­i­den­tial sec­tor. The area has wit­nessed ap­prox­i­mately 15-20% in­crease in cap­i­tal val­ues in the last one year. It has main­tained its USP of af­ford­able hous­ing. Even when all other up­com­ing res­i­den­tial mar­kets in NCR are quot­ing av­er­age prices any­where be­tween R5500 to R9000, Noida Ex­ten­sion is wit­ness­ing new launches at R3200 to R3500 per sq ft. Due to this cost ar­bi­trage, both in­vestors and end-users are buy­ing prop­er­ties in the re­gion. How­ever, it is im­por­tant to note that only those projects are see­ing high ab­sorp­tion where the de­vel­oper has been able to prove the project’s cred­i­bil­ity. De­vel­op­ers are will­ing to share build­ing plan ap­provals and other doc­u­ments nec­es­sary for es­tab­lish­ing the au­then­tic­ity of the project. Both end-users and in­vestors are now more in­formed and ed­u­cated on the due-dili­gence process re­quired be­fore buy­ing or in­vest­ing in a prop­erty.

In a nut­shell, Noida Ex­ten­sion is back in the game. Hav­ing said that, the po­ten­tial buy­ers have to care­fully eval­u­ate the projects they choose to buy or in­vest in. They should carry out a thor­ough due dili­gence and en­sure that the project is clear of all le­gal en­cum­brances. The area will cer­tainly wit­ness in­creased pace of real es­tate ac­tiv­ity in times to come and will fetch good re­turns for in­vestors with an in­vest­ment hori­zon of two to four years.

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