Mum­bai’s new lux­ury flats face harsh realty

HT Estates - - FRONT PAGE - Bidya Sa­pam [email protected]

MUM­BAI: The­dragin­lux­u­ry­home sales may soon leave some of southMum­bai’sposh­neigh­bour­hoods with a string of al­most empty sky­scrapers.

In Worli and neigh­bour­ing Prab­hadevi, which host the su­per-rich in busi­ness andBol­ly­wood, more than half of up­com­ing res­i­den­tial tow­ers are strug­gling to find buy­ers. Low­erParel, also in the vicin­ity, where res­i­den­tial high-rises have mush­roomedinthemid­stoflarge­of­fice com­plexes, is wit­ness­ing a sim­i­lar fate. Out of the to­tal sup­ply of 7,292 lux­u­rya­part­mentsinWorli and Prab­hadevi, 4,107 re­main un­sold, ac­cord­ing to data com­piled byLi­ases Fo­ras Real Es­tate Rat­ing and Re­search Pvt. Ltd. Theav­er­age­costo­fana­part­ment in these ar­eas is ₹10 crore. At the cur­rent pace, it may take more than17yearstodis­pose­ofthe­cur­rent stock, shows the data.

Th­e­si­t­u­a­tion­hasput­pres­sure on­prop­er­typricesinthe­sear­eas, with­builders of­fer­ing dis­counts.

AtWorli, home­sare­be­ing­sold at ₹60,987 persq. ft (on­car­petarea ba­sis), down from ₹67,467 per sq. ft in thesec­ondquar­terof2014-15. AtLow­erParel, with1,337 un­sold units, prices have dropped from ₹60,708 to ₹58,269 per sq. ft dur­ing the same pe­riod, ac­cord­ing to Li­ases Fo­ras data.

“Toomuch­sup­ply­cameatthe same­time. If the sup­ply­wasstag­gered over a pe­riod of time, it would have ad­justed to the de­mand but the chal­lenge com­pounded as most of them came around the same pe­riod,” said Anuj Puri, chair­man, Anarock Prop­er­tyCon­sul­tantsLtd, aprop­erty broking firm.

Wor­li­is­dot­ted­with­some­ofthe most ex­pen­sive up­com­ing hous­ing projects: Oberoi Realty Ltd’s uber lux­ury project Three Sixty West, K Ra­heja Corp’s Arte­sia, OmkarReal­tors’ 1973 andProve­nance Land’s Four Sea­sons Pri­vate Res­i­dences.

“Sales have def­i­nitely been slow. Wearenow­fo­cuse­don­first com­plet­ing our project. We will ope­nourthird­tow­er­for­salenext year­when­the­mar­ket­sta­bi­lizes,” said Rahul Ma­roo, CEO of Omkar’s 1973 project. Be­tween 2013 and 2017, Omkar sold over 85% of first two tow­ers that com­prised over 320 units, he said.

Lastyear, Pi­ra­malCap­i­ta­land Hous­ingFi­nanceLtd, which­lent to the 1973 project, had­to­bringin Anarock Prop­erty Con­sul­tants for push­ing sales to ex­pe­dite the re­cov­ery of its money. This year, de­vel­oper Pari­nee Group was forced to con­vert its planned up­scale res­i­den­tial project in Worli, funded by non-bank­ing fi­nance group ECL Fi­nance Ltd, into of­fice space, due to huge over­sup­ply in the vicin­ity.

Cash- rich builders have, mean­while, put up a brave face, claim­ingth­ere­a­ree­nough­tak­ers for high- end homes. Vikas Oberoi, chair­manand­manag­ing di­rec­tor, Oberoi Realty, said Worli con­tin­ues to find trac­tion among wealthy In­di­ans look­ing to shift their base from dif­fer­ent parts of the city. “... Prop­er­ties at Worli Sea Face are be­ing sold at around ₹1.5 lakh per sq. ft. Our project is onelanebe­hin­dandwe are sell­ing at 50% of that price. So I have­cus­tomer­slinedup, butwe are par­tic­u­lar about the right pro­file,” Oberoi said.

Launched two years ago, Oberoi’sThree­Six­tyWest­pro­ject has­reg­is­tered­sale­sof56u­nit­sout of around 200. Not far away is K Ra­heja Corp’s Arte­sia, where around 50 units are yet to be sold out of 100, with each apart­ment cost­ing ₹35 crore and­above. “We don’t have a large in­ven­tory. We are­on­ly­cre­atingex­clu­sivea­part­mentsand­verychoosyabout­the pro­file. Wede­cide­whomwe­want to sell,” said Om Ahuja, chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer, res­i­den­tial busi­ness, K Ra­heja Corp.

MINT/FILE

In Worli, 2290 units launched since 2013 re­main un­sold

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