To improve the road infrastructure in the city, the Ghaziabad Development Authority (GDA) is soon going to undertake as many as 44 projects. For the same, a sum of Rs 190 crore has been sanctioned to the authority. Majority of the funds will be used for road widening, improving lighting system and construction of rotaries for better traffic movement. In this backdrop, Nikunj Joshi of QuikrHomes Bureau spoke to Gautam Thapar, co-direction of Thapar India, who recently launched their first residential project in Ghaziabad. Here are the excerpts.
Do you think Ghaziabad will lead the show in Delhi NCR region?
Ghaziabad is one of India’s biggest Industrial cities. It has also found a place in the list of top ten dynamic cities in the world. It will surely lead the show as it a consumer-centric market unlike Gurugram and Greater Noida. Moreover, with property prices being unaffordable in most part of Delhi and other places of NCR, Ghaziabad evolves as a better option for the home-buyers.
Ghaziabad is also a great opportunity for buyers from other UP cities who wish to settle in NCR. Lastly, with massive infrastructural development and upgradation underway in terms of Metro Lines and widening of NH-24, the potential will only improve with time.
With so much inventory overhang, why are developers not slashing the property prices of the residential stock?
I think, if there really was any further scope to reduce the price- the developers would have happily reduced it further. A lot of discounts, schemes, packages and scope for negotiation are being offered to lure consumers in the current scenario.
With projects getting delayed for more than 4 years, the cash flow and sales of most developers have almost absolutely shrunk. Moreover, as compared to 4-5 years ago, the cost to complete a delayed project has drastically gone up with the rise in input cost.
In most of the cases, developers have already taken the majority of the cost of the apartment and used it for construction or have diverter the funds for a new project. And with the rising cost of interest for financing the construction, it will not make sense for the developer to complete the project if prices for new or remaining units are slashed beyond a certain amount.
How do you view affordable housing segment in India today?
Affordable housing is categorised based on three distinct types of housing- EWS, LIG and MIG housing. The size of the dwelling unit; varying from 300 sq. ft. to 1,200 sq. ft. depending on the housing category type, and then the cost or EMI of the dwelling unit, which should not cross 30-40% of the buyer’s monthly income.
Affordable Housing has great potential to take India to the next level. More than 18 million urban home are required in the coming years and the need for good quality affordable housing with easy connectivity for the growing young population in and around major cities will be the key factor for the growth of our economy.
What, as per you, would facilitate the growth of affordable housing in the country?
Infrastructural development by the government will be the key to success for facilitating the growth of affordable housing. Starting from, affordable land for development in & around major cities, easy connectivity for hassle-free commute from home to work in the form of good road networks, metro lines, freight corridors etc, abundance of utilities such as- power, water, sewage line, recycling plants etc and social infrastructure such as – schools, colleges, hospitals etc.
Do you think the government will be able to achieve the ambitious dream of “Housing for All by 2022”?Nothing is impossible if done with the right intent and right execution!
Which cities are expected to lead in this pocket-friendly segment?I think the major cities like Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Pune, Bangalore will lead the way as these cities offer more employment opportunities.