Trends that will dominate realty industry in 2021

--By ManjuYagnik, Vice Chairperson, Nahar Group & Sr. VP-NAREDCO, Maharashtra West

Indian Real Estate Market’s demand dynamics have evolved and changed post unfolding of pandemic scenarios and the sector is witnessing a wave of newer trends. These trends on how realtors do business to consuming real estate for self-use are here to stay for some time. This pandemic has brought about a consumer behaviour shift. The industry is adopting new ways of doing business as well as making properties that will suit the new demands of the consumers and investors. With social distancing becoming part of our everyday life, till the vaccination drive culminates, the pandemic prompted trends will predict vast underlying demand in the market.

1. Actual Habitable Space 

Due to the pandemic, people want more livable space. Buyers are seeking developments that offer comparatively additional indoor and outdoor spaces along with the existing unit spaces. With more activities taking place inside the home, homes need to now have more space for living. Homes are now being looked at as utility space which doubles up as a living space, living, entertainment, career/job work, working out, school, and more. Buildings near parks have always been in demand which provides greater convenience of open space that too at a walkable distance are in demand. 

2. Healthy Living Space 

Globally we are seeing another trend ought of a pandemic being self-wellness and that residential real estate will be radically driven by the wellness movement. Since our homes, communities, and surrounding environment would directly affect our daily behaviors and lifestyles and determine our healthy living quotient. Today, buyers choose the environment, health, and wellbeing over everything in development along with good space. Since our homes are typically our most important personal investment and expenditure, it is only logical that they should also be an investment in our health and wellbeing. Townships that cover elements like well-being, outdoor amenities, medical and healthcare facilities all at walking distance are eyed by buyer 

3. Suburban Living 

Post pandemic safety was seen with living in larger homes sheltered from the virus in many bedroom apartments. Suburban living is now a new luxury and always a comfort to be living in a big house offering space for online education, work from home, online yoga / Zumba class amongst your loved ones. Suburban living offers the solace of sprawling homes in large, private areas, separated from the bustle of the city noise and crowd. Suburbs offer developments with larger spaces at a comfortable cost seeing major migration to suburbs.    

4. Small Luxury Homes 

With pandemic, we have seen an emergence of smaller convenient luxury homes offering larger space in desired budgets. This coupled with exponential population growth, is seeing the rise of the urban singleton, and is forcing city living spaces to shrink. We are seeing increased demand for small space living with the introduction of smaller 1, 2 & 3 BHK mushrooming in extended suburbs called convenient luxury homes which offer enough space for well-being, happiness, and mindfulness. This very new trend on the horizon: small space living is seeing good demand from millennials, working professionals as well as investors seeing good rental income seeing the demand for smaller homes.

5. Demand for housing in Tier 2 cities

With reverse migration due to pandemics, there is an exponential demand for housing especially affordable housing in Tier 2 and 3 cities from migrants moving back home. Also with the ticket sizes in these cities being lower than Tier 1 cities, saw a major push for housing in smaller towns which also indirectly push demand for affordable housing. Recent empirical evidence indicates a growing tide of people is opting for tier 2/3/4 cities/towns. The rise of Tier 2, Tier 3 cities is driving a realty rally across India 

6. Second home concept 

Second homes purchased as weekend gateways today proved to be a saviour in pandemic for the WFH scenario. These second homes mostly located away from the city bustle and closer to nature have proved to be the safest, understanding social distancing scenario. Covid-19 will not have any major impact on the second homes market and buyers would continue to invest in second homes for investment and safer living purposes. So, buying a second home is going to get a further boost in years to come for a safer and healthy living option.

7. Virtual / Digital Real Estate buying 

With pandemic, customers faced mobility restrictions. The real estate sector was forced to take a plunge into digital home selling from its traditional ways from the virtual launch of projects, to digitally sign rental agreements, sell homes online, and redesign workspaces to make them as touch-free as possible. It was the need of the hour and developers rapidly digitized for remote work and digital access to services across every domain to continue with the buying experience but digitally. In a challenging year, 3D walkthroughs and online sales became the new norm for the realty sector. The digitization experience has worked well with the industry and will see further adoption of making it more buyer-friendly. New project virtual tours and walk-through digi-tours is the new normal with developers connecting with the buyer to enhance brand value and build trust without a physical face to face.