Built at a click

Hindustan Times (Chandigarh) - Estates - - FRONT PAGE - Lav­ina Mulchan­dani lav­ina.mulchan­dani@htlive.com

You can buy a house, or even build one, with just a few clicks. De­vel­op­ers and e-por­tals have been lever­ag­ing tech­nol­ogy to sim­plify trans­ac­tions over the past few years, in­tro­duc­ing 360de­gree tours, on­line book­ing and live chat ser­vices. Now, realty com­pa­nies such as Make My House, Ar­rivae, SILA and In­di­a­b­ulls Hous­ing Fi­nance are of­fer­ing apps and web­sites that help buy­ers process home loans, de­sign in­te­ri­ors, man­age main­te­nance and even re-sell prop­erty. “In a re­cov­er­ing mar­ket, such 360-de­gree ser­vices are helping raise buyer in­ter­est with the prom­ise of con­ve­nience, ease and trans­parency,” says Pankaj Kapoor, CEO of real-es­tate con­sul­tancy Li­ases Foras.

This is par­tic­u­larly use­ful, say buy­ers, when you live in one city and are in­vest­ing in an­other.

Mum­bai busi­ness­man Mustafa Nadeem, 33, for in­stance, turned to Make My House when he de­cided to build his dream home in Indore. The web­site lets you pick your plot, ar­chi­tect, build­ing ma­te­rial and in­te­ri­ors on­line. “Con­struc­tion also be­gins on the date you fi­nalise,” says Mustafa Jo­har, co-founder and head of op­er­a­tions.

In Jan­uary, Nadeem took pos­ses­sion of his cus­tomised, 1,800sq-ft bun­ga­low.

“They helped me get all the land ap­provals, gave in to my de­mand that ev­ery room in my 4BHK house should over­look a land­scaped gar­den, and de­liv­ered the com­pleted house in eight months,” he says.

“Best of all, I only vis­ited the site three times, to sign the sale deed and check on progress. Ev­ery­thing else was done through the web­site.”

Ar­rivae, mean­while, lets you con­cep­tu­alise your in­te­ri­ors, pick fur­ni­ture and se­lect paint shades on­line. “Once you se­lect a de­sign, we com­plete your in­te­ri­ors within 45 days,” says founder Yash Kela. That worked well for Thane chef Neeta De­sai, 35. “I wanted a mix of many themes in my 2BHK,” she says. “They helped me get it all done, in­clud­ing a bon­sai in the bath­room and a rus­tic liv­ing room. I only checked-in twice.”

Fi­nan­cial as­sis­tance and es­tate man­age­ment are get­ting eas­ier too, as a re­sult of the 360de­gree on­line ser­vices. About a year ago, In­di­a­b­ulls Hous­ing Fi­nance be­gan of­fer­ing ‘eHome-loans’. “You can ap­ply through our mo­bile app, scan and up­load all your doc­u­ments. We eval­u­ate them on­line and dis­burse the sum into your bank ac­count,” says COO Sachin Chaud­hury. “We use a thumb im­pres­sion in­stead of a sig­na­ture.”

Cus­tomers are still get­ting used to the idea of tak­ing such a big step vir­tu­ally, Chaud­hury says.

“We are launch­ing a new ver­sion of the app with im­proved speed, bet­ter bio­met­ric recog­ni­tion, and quicker ser­vice, in a few months. It will save cus­tomers the has­sle and pa­per­work in­volved off­line.”

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