The deadly Coronavirus outbreak and subsequent shutdown effectively halted global economic activity as it disrupted trade, commerce and business cycles. The Indian real estate market, which had already struggled to re-emerge from demonetization, structural changes, economic reforms and the liquidity crisis, is now expected to experience another significant impact. At the moment the consumer feeling is negative due to the effects of the national lock-down.
A recent CommonFloor market sentiment survey shows that a whopping 39 per cent of potential home buyers dropped their decision to purchase land. 27 per cent of respondents are pursuing their plans to purchase a home and 55 per cent want to purchase a home in the next three months.
Although the Indian real estate market is reeling under the COVID-19 effect, it can be a very positive time for homebuyers to negotiate good deals on ready-to-move options as they are at an unparalleled advantage. They are also expected to benefit from all-time low-interest rates on home loans, from 7.15 to 7.8 per cent. More than half of those answering foresee further rebates because of the COVID-19 crisis. It was only until a few months ago that the internet could only do so much as to help the customers in deciding which property to buy.
It usually began with generic online research and if everything fell into place, customers would go for a physical visit of the property and then conclude the deal. Despite there being sufficient technological feasibility, the Indian real estate market had not yet completely taken to getting everything done online. However, everything seems to have changed after the COVID-19 pandemic. It has essentially forced people to adapt to the change that they always feared.
Today consumers not only use online platforms to cement their buying intentions but also make successful purchases with the aid of the internet. Digital home transactions in the times ahead could become something of a standard, rather than an exception. In such a situation, setting certain ground rules will be necessary to ensure you are not entering into a bad deal.
Given below are a few tips for you to ensure before proceeding to purchase properties online.
- Property Inspection
It is very important for people to understand that in our country, people seldom miss out on opportunities to dupe others to make some quick money. Although a virtual visit is completely possible, customers should understand that monetary transactions when it comes to real estate are substantial and not to be taken lightly. Maintain social distancing and visit the property before committing to anything. If possible, inspect the property too.
- Reputation Matters
This thumb rule remains valid regardless of the buying mode-online or offline. Fraud is popular in the real estate sector, and scammers use a variety of tricks to threaten buyers with their hard-earned money, particularly if the transaction is online. Buyers should also be suspicious of enticing offers coming from unknown sources. One can only deal directly with impeccable track records of builders or real estate agents. A company doesn’t become a trusted name unless you frequently watch their television commercials featuring celebrities. To keep the purchase problem-free, go only with existing brands, preferably with the listed companies.
- Unbelievable Offers
People are often scammed a great deal with prices that are unbelievable or too good to be true. While we cannot ignore the fact that COVID-19 has hit the real estate market, it should also be noted that there has been no drastic fall in prices. Scamsters often cash in on this scenario and try to offer properties at throw-away prices to which unsuspecting customers fall victims. Exercise maximum amount of precaution and take all necessary steps to verify the veracity of the property and its owner before making any payments. Never buy a property because it is available for dirt cheap price. Anything that is available for a price that seems too good to be true is a potential red flag, beware!
- Document Verification
While one now has the luxury of completing property transactions completely electronically, to prove your ownership, you do need to be in physical possession of the property-related documents. Even if you can find your dream home online or make payments using online platforms, or have your home loan approved online, your possession of the asset is not good if the property records are not with you. Therefore, ensure the paperwork is properly completed and documented.