The second wave of COVID-19 has been more devastating than the first. Claiming several lives, it had severe repercussions on the healthcare system and other sectors too. Localised lockdowns across most of the top cities have affected site visits, impacting the housing sales as well. It has put the homebuyers in a wait-and-watch scenario.
Developers too have started deferring new launches.
“Sales data for the April-June quarter is not yet in; however, we see that from April till date, there is a more than 50% decline in housing project sales in the top 7 cities against the previous quarter. This is especially true for MMR, Pune, NCR, and Bengaluru. Housing sales in Q2 2021 may reduce by as much as 55% against the first quarter, which saw approx. 58,280 units sold in the top 7 cities,” says Anuj Puri, Chairman, ANAROCK Property Consultants.
As evidenced by the sound sales revival seen during and post the first wave of the pandemic, latent housing demand has surged.
Whatever be the case, developers believe that the impact of the second wave of the pandemic shall be limited on real estate. It is mainly because of the small and major advancements like the usage of digital tools which makes it a better prepared sector.
On the other hand, some developers believe that the second wave of COVID-19 has introduced uncertainty in the real estate business. The impact will be felt in new launches, site visits as well as property sales.
According to industry experts, the second wave has the entire nation along with the administration severely concerned. Demand and economic activities have slowed down because of the lockdown in almost the entire country.
The 1st quarter of 2021 will witness low site visits and sales figures. The pandemic has made it clear that this is the right time to plan for the short term instead of the long term due to market uncertainty.
Vineet Taing, President, Vatika Business Centre, believes that the corporates which plan for the long term expansion plans as well as future office space requirements with leased spaces have come to a standstill with the resurgence of Covid-19. “Maybe the time is to have a short-term vision and switch to Business Centres and Serviced Office Spaces which are best suited due to their flexibility to upscale or downscale, easier lease terms, and ready availability,” he said.