Indian Real Estate – No Progress Without Collaboration

Anil Pharande

The Indian real estate sector has seen a tremendous transformation over the last decade. In earlier years, it was unorganized and real estate developers used to build whatever they wanted, with no planning, quality control and accountability. We can see the evidence of such unorganized development in our cities even today. Moreover, real estate developers were not able to voice their concerns to the government if policy changes or other measures were required. With no cooperation and collaboration between builders, homebuyers suffered the most as they were offered inferior products in areas that did not have proper infrastructure.

The Beginning of Organization

The first major change in this sad situation came in the year 1999, which saw the formation of the Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India (CREDAI). The mission of this formal association of real estate developers was – and remains – to advocate necessary policy changes, implement self-regulation among developers, and ensure that all member builders work in a cooperative and well-planned manner.

This self-governing body of builders from across the country has achieved a lot, especially in recent years. It has brought about a lot of positive changes in the industry which encouraged the government to introduce major policy reforms to further improve the industry’s overall transparency and efficiency. The most important policy change was the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 (RERA).

This major reform was primarily made possible because of the active support of developers members of this association who had become organized and accountable to the government, each other – and most importantly, to their customers. Implementing RERA would have been impossible in previous years.

After RERA was announced, the Indian real estate industry has made tremendous progress and homebuyer confidence is now stronger than ever before. According to industry estimates, organized real estate demand in India was as high as 1.35 bn sq. ft. by 2020 end – and 85% of this demand was for housing.

Nevertheless, bodies like CREDAI are aware that they must remain constantly vigilant and take corrective steps if they are required. Let us try to understand how self-governance, collaboration and collective decision-making work in favour of the market.

Inexperienced Builders & Oversupply

Between 2010-2015, we began to see signs of bad demand-supply management in the Indian housing market. This largely happened because people who had some money but no experience in housing development began launching residential projects.

These unorganized builders included goldsmiths, diamond merchants and cash-rich NRIs from the Gulf who had never built anything before and had no membership in any real estate industry association. They were simply associated with the motto to make a quick buck. More than one million homes were launched in 7 largest cities between 2013 and 2014 – and 14% of these homes were in Pune. This was obviously far too much housing supply.

If there had been enough demand for this supply, India’s housing shortage would have reduced massively in those two years. Instead, there was a huge overload of homes – and many of these projects remained incomplete because the amateur ‘developers’ lacked expertise and ran out of money. It became clear that there was an urgent need for stricter regulations within the Indian housing sector.

Strong Measures Taken

When the Modi government took charge in 2014, this accredited real estate developers association took the initiative to help the new government correct the flaws in the system. The Modi government introduced RERA and made a ‘surgical strike’ on black money with DeMo in 2016.

Both these moves helped to remove unorganized builders who did not belong to any association and did whatever they wanted – with disastrous effects. CREDAI actively backed this new reform and went a step further. Its developer members collectively decided to begin curtailing housing supply so that the excess supply could decrease and the market could stabilize again.

The results of these combined efforts were impressive. By the end of 2017, for the first time, housing sales were more than new launches – according to property research firms, new housing supply in the top 7 cities had come down to 1.45 lakh units even as over 2.11 lakh homes were sold in the year. Homebuyers were encouraged by the new transparency and now knew that dealing with inexperienced, unscrupulous builders would only end in grief.

The Mission Continues

Today, India still has a lot of problems, including unsold housing supply. However, organized developers now have a plan of action which is emphasised at every meeting and conference of this association. Confidence must be restored, and this can only happen when developers and homebuyers work together as partners. Homebuyers are stakeholders in the Indian housing industry, and it is every organized developer’s responsibility to defend their rights.

At the same time, the government must be made aware of problems within the industry as soon as they emerge. Unlike in previous years, the government now listens attentively to organized builder associations and takes necessary corrective steps. In this manner, both real estate developers and homebuyers can look forward to a better tomorrow where homes are affordable, worth the money that is paid for them, and provide a lifetime of safety and security to Indian families.

A Forum for Technology Adoption

Technology is another major change factor in Indian real estate today. Here too, builder associations create awareness about the latest real estate technologies which all members can use to build better, cheaper and stronger housing projects.

This kind of knowledge exchange would not be possible without the collaborative approach which CREDAI has adopted. In the coming years, we will see the latest construction technologies being used to build better homes in shorter periods, and every developer will have access to them.

Pan-India Presence

It is important to remember that CREDAI is not just active in India’s largest cities, but across smaller cities and towns as well. In the current changes brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, these smaller cities have become very important. The work-from-home culture has resulted in more and more housing demand in these cities.

We must ensure that the progress being seen in the metropolitan cities also penetrates into every part of the country – for the betterment of the whole industry, and to benefit each and every homebuyers in India.

About the author:

Anil Pharande is CMD of Pharande Spaces, a leading real estate construction and development firm famous for its township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer of townships in West Pune. Anil Pharande is also Vice President – CREDAI (Pune Metro) and a MahaRERA conciliation forum member.

Mumbai-Pune Expressway is the New Development Lifeline

Anil Pharande

A report published by Oxford Economics states that India will have most of the world’s fastest-growing cities between 2019 and 2035. Strangely, Pune is not included in the list of 17 cities where Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Chennai are mentioned prominently. But perhaps this is not surprising since the research is based solely on GDP growth.

The fact is that Pune is very much among the fastest-growing cities in India and even the COVID-19 pandemic, which is now getting under control in India, has not changed this fact.

The city’s economy generates a lot of jobs which attract people from all over. Pune remains a dominant employment generator in India because it is driven by three major industries – manufacturing, IT/ITeS and services. These jobs attract people from other cities and the rural areas, which in turn creates demand for housing. The only fitting response to this demand is real estate development.

Let us try to understand how the growth of a city should be defined. While it is definitely important, GDP is not the first aspect which comes to mind. The way most of us define growth is in terms of geographical expansion. The reason why cities expand is inward migration of population from the rural areas and also other parts of the country.

Of course, a city needs to have the capacity to grow. In all these aspects, Pune has been a forerunner in growth. While some of this expansion is haphazard and resulting in unnecessary oversupply, we are also seeing directions of growth which are vital for Pune’s sustainable future prospects.

Inward Migration – The Key To Real Estate Growth

Trends indicate that about 25-30 Indians are migrating to Indian cities every minute. Pune and Mumbai draw the most inward migration in the state of Maharashtra, which is the 3rd-largest Indian state in terms of area. Pune’s city limits have been constantly expanding to accommodate this migration. Mumbai, on the other hand, has very little capacity for expansion.

If you have been wondering why Pune’s developers kept building more housing projects even though the housing market has been slow over the last 2-3 years, the main reason is inward migration. Absorption may have been slow because of the disruptions caused by policy interventions like RERA, but the demand for housing in Pune is growing constantly. In reality, developers are building for the city’s future, not its present.  

Expressway To Growth

The biggest thrust of Pune’s development has been towards the financial capital of Mumbai. These two cities in many ways have a shared economy, causing a constant shuttling of goods, people and resources between them every day. Also, Pune sees a lot of housing demand from Mumbaikars who have business interests in Pune.  

Pune’s persistent growth towards Mumbai has been made possible by the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, which has reduced the travel time between the two cities to less than 95 km. The Mumbai-Pune Expressway has been the single-largest catalyst for economic exchange between the two cities. No other highway in India has opened up as many opportunities for the economic growth of two cities.

Not surprisingly, areas closest to the Mumbai-Pune Expressway have been witnessing a real estate boom. Already, the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) announced its intention to open up 1000 acres along the Mumbai-Pune Expressway for development. Builders with historic land holdings in these locations are now actively developing them and seeing a tremendous response.

Moreover, areas adjoining the Mumbai-Pune Expressway have become hotbeds for real estate development. Employees not only from the nearby MIDC manufacturing belt but also from Hinjewadi IT Park have responded to the opportunity of owning homes in areas like Ravet and Punavale. Now, even the serene location of Urse, located right along the Expressway, is seeing real estate development in the form of a large integrated township.

According to data from Property Consultant ANAROCK, Urse (within 3 km radius) witnessed new launches of more than 7,100 units between 2013 to 2020 with avg. property prices presently hovering at INR 4,100 per sq. ft. In comparison to 2015, average property prices here have increased by more than 11%.  Trends further indicate that out of the total new supply since 2013, a whopping 75% is already sold out while over 65% is ready-to-move-in.

Besides affordable prices and future growth prospects, housing demand has so far been driven by people working in nearby industrial areas.  The locality is also home to few logistics and warehousing options because of its proximity to Mumbai-Pune Highway. However, the profile of Urse is changing with the arrival of a luxury golf-themed township. In the future, the area is bound to see more high-end real estate options being made available.  

Gurugram-based realty portal Zricks.com confirms that Urse is attracting many investors due to the availability of various different property options in the locality. The presence of social infrastructure facilities such as transportation, education, healthcare, shopping and entertainment facilities in and around the area is an added advantage.

As a result, Urse is seeing robust real estate growth and this trend will pick up pace as Pune and Mumbai grow closer to each other via the Expressway.

‘Real’ Growth Is Not A Number

Economic performance or GDP of a city is obviously an important factor for geographic expansion, but only because GDP is the result of the city’s ability to generate jobs, which in turn generate demand for real estate. Pune has been able to expand to accommodate the increasing demand. This is the essence of the growth of a city.

This pattern of expansion has also been seen in the National Capital Region (NCR). However, there is a massive problem of oversupply in Delhi-NCR because it has expanded away from – rather than towards – its main employment hubs.

While Pune is expanding in many directions, the most critical direction is obviously towards Mumbai. The important task at hand now is to open up more and more areas along the Mumbai-Pune Expressway for good quality real estate developments. This process is underway and is constantly bringing the two cities closer together.  

About the author:
 

Anil Pharande is CMD of Pharande Spaces, a leading real estate construction and development firm famous for its township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer of townships in West Pune. Anil Pharande is also Vice President – CREDAI (Pune Metro) and a MahaRERA conciliation forum member. 

Anil Pharande In Interview With The Realty Paper

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces in interview with The Realty Paper

  • How is the current scenario in the Pune real estate market?

Pune is a powerhouse of potential when it comes to real estate. It is a city of learning and entrepreneurship, and there is a distinctly progressive flavour to everything that happens there. Thanks to the fact that it has become a magnet for IT/ITES and manufacturing companies, the real estate market in Pune is not likely to lose its forward momentum. That said, I always had misgivings about the opportunistic manner in which property development was taking place within the PMC limits, and was far more interested in the holistic approach being adopted in Pimpri-Chinchwad.

  • What are your focal points of a real estate development firm?

In terms of locations, we have so far concentrated on the PCMC area and West Pune. My passion for real estate in PCMC has its reasons – the idea of being involved in the raising of a planned city on the lines of Chandigarh, so close to Pune, excited me. My primary objective has been to help steer the path of this planned development, which is why I got involved with CREDAI. Getting into the creation of township properties that would take the best advantage of the benefits that the PCMC offered in terms of superior infrastructure and phased real estate growth was the next logical step.

  • When was Pharande Spaces established?

Pharande Spaces was started in 1994 with negative capital. We launched purely on bank borrowings and goodwill.

  • Where are you most involved in the development of projects?

Since I come from a technical background, I have always placed great emphasis on employing the latest construction techniques in our projects. Our primary focus is on high-quality, visually aesthetic and lifestyle-oriented township projects that are environmentally sustainable and add to the grandeur of Pune’s real estate landscape.

  • Is Pharande Spaces involved in any other business verticals?

Apart from residential real estate, we are already into the manufacture of non-conventional energy equipment as well as distribution and power transformers. We have also forayed into the construction of malls and multiplexes. As already mentioned, we have so far concentrated on PCMC and West Pune, but are now firming up plans to expand into Goa as well.

  • Were you impacted by the slowdown in the real estate market?

Along with all other real estate development firms, Pharande Spaces faced all the ups and downs of the real estate market. We did not incur losses during the downturn, but we certainly did not experience much growth during the phase. Thankfully, the slowdown is now over and demand for quality housing is back with in force.

  • How many residential townships have you built till date?

We have built more than 25 residential projects to date, which include large integrated residential projects and two fully integrated townships.

  • L-Axis was Pharande Spaces’ first ultra-luxury township. Could you tell us more about the latest township you announced?

L-Axis is definitely one of the largest luxury projects we have launched. More recently, Pharande Spaces launched Puneville, a one-of-its-kind ultra-luxury township at Punavale in West Pune. The project is being developed on the 50-acre plot of a de-notified SEZ. The location in the heart of West Pune is literally perfect, being one kilometre from Wakad and with ready access to Aundh and Hinjewadi and further on to Lonavala and Mumbai via the Pune-Mumbai Expressway.

Puneville is a top-of-line luxury residential project designed on the lines of a luxury resort by Aedas, the global award-winning architects who have master-minded Venetian style hotels in Las Vegas and Macau as well as the Financial Centre in Shanghai and Marina Bay Sands at Singapore. Aedas ranks second among the world’s top architectural firms and will bring its full expertise to bear on Puneville. This project is by far the best in the country and incorporates every conceivable luxury feature, and outshines anything so far seen in residential real estate in Pune.

  • How do you view the real estate business at a personal level?

I am passionate about what I do, but have to admit that this business literally leaves no spare time at all. Relaxation is not even a factor.

  • Do you family members complain about your constant non-availability for them? This is a known syndrome among successful developers…

Quite possible, but I haven’t heard the complaints because I’m constantly on the phone.

  • Where do you and your family go for vacations? Do you have any favourite destination?

We have explored the world, mostly in context with my constant search for architectural inspiration for our projects. During these trips, my family members certainly enjoy themselves. We are particularly fond of Turkey, Singapore, Malaysia, Greece and China.

(As featured in: The Realty Paper)

Puneville: Redefining luxurious living with a dash of modern lifestyle

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

With the Pune real estate market now counting among the most vibrant and attractive property investment destinations in the country, the focus is now squarely on which regions and real estate typologies are in highest demand by end users and investors. West Pune has emerged as a clear winner. One of the major global industrial hubs, West Pune is a dynamic economic generator drawing power from its massive cluster of mechanical, automotive and information technology clusters.

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Integrated townships have become the most preferred residential real estate configuration in Pune, and Punawale in West Pune is now home to what is by far the most luxurious as well as future-ready townships of its kind. Puneville, the masterpiece of luxurious township living by Pharande Spaces, has completely redefined the West Pune real estate landscape. Conceived and executed in partnership with globally acclaimed architects Aedas, this ultra-luxurious project is the culmination of Pharande Spaces’ constant quest towards perfection in township development.

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Puneville has been created to be the penultimate statement in luxurious township living,” says Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces. “We have spared no effort, expense or stretch of imagination to make it the most desirable residential address in Pune, and we have succeeded. The response from end users and investors has been unprecedented. By design and intent, Puneville is a unique creation that has no peers. Here in West Pune, we have given the city its ultimate real estate destination.”

Puneville consists of 16 towers, each with 23 storeys of uniquely crafted living spaces. In keeping with its elite ethos, its 2, 3 and 4BHK apartments are equipped with highest quality fittings, fixtures and marble flooring, sourced from leading manufacturers in Europe and Asia. The outdoor perfectly complements the interiors with every conceivable luxury feature, including Olympic-sized swimming pools for every cluster of buildings, landscaped gardens, tennis courts and a jogging track.

Puneville also features a completely unique sky walkway that circumnavigates the residential towers, effectively connecting all the towers to a central green area and children play zones.

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Is Pune ready for such a luxurious, futuristic township?

“Absolutely,” says Anil Pharande. “Luxury living in Pune is driven primarily by its burgeoning Information Technology sector – and in terms of what buyers from this segment expect from their luxury homes, the stakes are extremely high. At the same time, integrated townships have emerged as the most desirable residential real estate offering, since they offer self-contained and self-sustained infrastructure as well as all the ingredients of a modern, convenient lifestyle. Puneville is the perfect marriage of residential luxury in a full-fledged township environment in West Pune, which is now the city’s most sought-after real estate investment precinct.”

Mar 28 2015 : The Times of India (Pune)

Versatile Real Estate Development In Pimpri-Chinchwad

  • Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces

PCMC has set many benchmarks in real estate development, and this is because development in this region has at all times been tightly regulated. This approach has ensured that PCMC has retained its abundant green cover, and an environment that is absolutely perfect for both businesses and residents.

In fact, PCMC has become the most talked-about residential as well as commercial real estate destination? Both people and businesses look for ease of living and working, and it is here where these advantages are freely available. The internet is today the most powerful tool available for home buyers who are looking for these benefits in their homes, and also for people who are looking for employment in the best companies.

Since PCMC offers the best possible equation for both jobs and home seekers, it has become extremely popular on the internet. According to the latest statistics available from the Times Group’s indiatimes.com, the Pimpri-Chinchwad region draws a mind-boggling monthly traffic of 658273 visitors on. In fact, PCMC ranks among the top 10 cities in terms of search rankings on the Internet. On TOI.com, Pimpri-Chinchwad ranks 4th after Mumbai, Bangalore and Delhi, with 21.7 million views per month. In comparison, Pune ranks 9th with only 5.26 million viewers per month.

The reason why PCMC is so popular is because of the versatile manner in which it has developed. There are many examples of this. The first is the way in which the authorities have managed to harness the power of its excellent location attributes.

The Mumbai-Pune Express Highway, which is the umbilical cord between Pune and other major metropolises beginning with Mumbai, is the very lifeblood of PCMC’s commercial progress.  In addition, the Mumbai-Bangalore Highway (in the close neighborhood) brings in further commercial growth and intercity connectivity. It was the Mumbai-Pune Expressway which brought about the existence of the Hinjewadi Infotech and Biotech Park – which is the very important economic driver for the city today.

Professionals from the city’s IT and manufacturing sectors need homes close to their offices, and also relative privacy in their time away from work.  This has been a heavy driving factor behind the demand for township properties in the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation.

But the region has not allowed itself to become a victim of commercialized development. This is where the planned urbanization approach has paid off very well. PCMC’s development has taken place to ensure a complete balance between commercial and residential real estate. This means that unlike in Pune and many other cities, there is no crowding of residents and offices. Each sector in PCMC has its designated areas for businesses and residential spaces, which means that people are able to get to work easily. Enough infrastructure has been put in place so that commuting is not troublesome, utility supply is uninterrupted and the pace of life is stress-free and wholesome.

At the same time, PCMC has also stayed in step with the times and embraced the mantra of green sustainable construction. To date, there are around 60 registered green buildings completed or under construction in the PCMC. The new PCNTDA building itself is a resounding statement to how important sustainable development has become to the city. There are currently about 2 crore square feet of green spaces under construction in PCMC, making it by far the ‘greenest’ area in India.

PCMC is obviously the preferred destination for a massive number of Indians, both from within the PCMC-Pune region and beyond. It is drawing an unprecedented number of investor inquiries who are keen to cash in on the property boom in PCMC. And yet, we are only looking at the beginning of the boom – PCMC is growing horizontally and vertically, and is even now adding to its geography by acquiring and developing more land parcels to develop.

The versatile development of this region has become a byword of modern urbanization. As we look into the future, PCMC will break even more records and secure its place as India’s No. 1 real estate destination. Investors, home buyers and businesses with the foresight to track this trend will all be the winners.

About The Author:

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in Western Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings.

Indian Millennial Homebuyers: The Times Are Changing

Pharande Vaarivana

Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces

Everything that your parents may have communicated to you about owning a home may be incorrect if you are a millennial under the age of 35. However, don’t blame yourself for this – your parents operated by a rigid set of values that they have simply passed on to you. It was a simple enough formula – get a good education, get married, have kids and buy a big flat in the city. This is – or was – the quintessential Indian middle-class dream.

This dream – and the formula – may continue to have relevance to quite a few younger people in India, but the way life works for today’s millennials in India is no longer so cut and dried as it was for their parents. In the first place, we have a rapidly evolving and increasingly competitive job market in India.

The career charts of Indian millennials are no longer as predictable as those of their parents were – nor does a sound college education mean that one can actually get the best jobs anymore. Also, millennials are the ‘job hopping’ generation which wants to sample different lines of work and also different companies with varied work cultures before they ‘settle down.’ This is one reason why many Indian millennials initially prefer to rent rather than buy their homes.

Secondly, because their careers are no longer cast in the concrete of limited options like engineer, doctor, lawyer, banker or ‘Government job, young Indians today are marrying later and are not necessarily in a hurry to have children once they do, either. When they do decide on having children, having one child is, more often than not, enough. The typical millennial family of today is essentially nuclear and does not subscribe to the values that drove the much larger and much more complex joint family package.

Pharande Vaarivana

They are more flexible and value their freedom, so they are not overly invested in making heavy financial commitments as soon as they are able to (making such commitments was a defining factor of the previous generations of Indians).

What does this mean in terms of their home purchase decisions? For one thing, it means that a smaller flat – even for a dual-income household – is perfectly adequate to begin with. What increasingly matters for the young, smart socially conscious Indian nuclear family of today is not necessarily size, but:

  • Value for money (banks and developers should understand by now that dual income does not equal dual gullibility)
  • Being able to get to and from work conveniently (not because getting to work fast matters most, but because getting home faster leads to better work-life balance)
  • Good public transport connectivity (because using public transport is good for the family budget as well as the environment)
  • Two car parking spaces (because two earning members may need to be as mobile as possible)
  • Fast broadband + Wi-Fi connectivity and other smart home features (because many Indian millennials can and do work from home, or from home as well as an office)
  • Environmental sustainability of the project (because most Indian millennials do believe that the world can become a better place)

Upgrading to larger homes should be an option, but it is by no means the only acceptable path for the Indian millennial to follow. For the previous generations, the ‘upgradation’ route was more or less socially enforced – but that trend is now history.

Strangely, many residential developers in cities like Pune have not caught on to the reasons why their projects are not selling as fast as they used to. They choose to believe that it is because ‘market conditions’ are currently ‘slow’. That may be true, but the larger fact is that housing projects that appealed to their parents may not have the same attractiveness for today’s millennials.

Projects that do not meet the requirements of today’s younger generation of working professionals are not going to work for this buyer segment, regardless of the market conditions.

One truth about the real estate market has not changed, even for millennials – while it is not all about ‘location, location, location’ for them, location is still certainly very important. It’s just that ‘central location’ is no longer the Golden Rule – Indian millennials are far more inclined to purchase their first homes in the suburbs, not in the city centre.

They are also far more likely to buy homes in organized townships with stand-alone infrastructure and their own schools, healthcare and shopping / entertainment facilities. Townships with their own office complexes offering potential walk-to-work or cycle-to-work possibilities and those close to major employment hubs such as IT parks and manufacturing belts are the most preferred.

About The Author:

Pharande Vaarivana

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings. Woodsville in Moshi is another highly successful PCMC-based township by Pharande Spaces which is now in its 3rd phase.

Infrastructure And its Correlation to Home Buying

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces

In India, as in other countries, it is a simple fact that localities which are as close as possible to important workplace areas will be most consistently sought out by people looking to buy homes. Therefore, projects with great connectivity by railway and road, see the highest demand for residential properties.

Property investment is always driven by the infrastructure in and around a locality. From sufficient roads to reliable water supply and drainage, infrastructure includes all the physical characteristics which contribute towards creating sustainable communities. Unsurprisingly, property costs close to infrastructure including airports, railway stations and roads are higher than in other regions.

If a location does not offer reliable electricity and water supply, connectivity, public transportation stops and sanitation by ways of good sewerage and waste disposal, it will not work as a residential destination regardless of what else it offers. All these are services that nobody living in a modern Indian city is prepared to live without.

From a property marketplace outlook, sufficient infrastructure in an area includes everything that leads to an easier, convenient lifestyle which does not have to contend with any kind of shortages, service outages and breakdown of public facilities.

Well-planned roads and public transport

Roads are required to make transport quicker and simpler. They are important right from the time when basic infrastructure and initial real estate development are being put in place, as raw materials and labour has to be able to reach the location. Once the area is established, roads let people travel to and from work, for kids to get to and from school and for access to shopping and entertainment.

Proper planning of road, rail and public transport nodes is very important. The key factor to be kept in mind during this planning is that people do not want to too close to bus depots, railway stations, shopping areas and industries businesses – but neither will they wish to be too far away from them.

Reliable supply of essential utilities

In a developing country like India, there are still many towns and suburbs of cities that do not enjoy reliable water and electricity supply, garbage management and public security features. With the income of typical Indian families constantly growing, today’s urban homeowners are willing to spend more to get access to seamless water and electricity, and adequate security.

Naturally, residential complexes that provide 24×7 water and electricity supply and round-the-clock security are far now highly favored. This is what has led to the growing momentum of township development in Pune and even more so in PCMC. Housing projects in places that don’t have reliable utilities and where security is a concern do find takers – but these are usually exceptionally budget-strung buyers who resign themselves to having to wait for everything to fall in place at some stage.

Sanitation infrastructure

In India, there has been rising awareness of the minimum levels of sanitation that a household should have access to. A new location will only start attracting real demand from homebuyers if it offers appropriate measures of sanitation such as municipal road cleaning, trash removal, sewage and waste water disposal, and other related services. Without these services, life becomes unhealthy and intolerable. A location’s score on the sanitation front is a very important criterion for homebuyers who are shortlisting housing projects in which to buy a property.

Social infrastructure: Schools, hospitals, shopping and recreation

Indian families put great onus on the availability of schools in a residential neighbourhood. This is why areas with good schools in the vicinity fetch higher property rates than most others. This is not only a question of convenience for Indian parents, but also of the safety for their children. Because of life’s uncertainties and the rise in road and domestic accidents, hospitals are another component in an area’s social infrastructure that is of critical concern for homebuyers. They expect quick access to medical facilities –  this is non-negotiable.

Recreational open spaces such as parks are also consistently in favour from city dwellers that wish to experience nature to some extent, and thereby be able to find some refuge from the urban madness that rules most of their days. A locality that offers water bodies, gardens, parks and playgrounds in the vicinity are considered premium.

Developers of large integrated townships are aware of how important the availability of good social infrastructure has become, which is why they include gardens and artificial lakes as well as schools, shopping and entertainment inside the project premises for their residents.

Infrastructure in all its facets is therefore hugely important in today’s residential property scenario, and it directly influences the buying behavior of Indians scouting around for homes. The degree to which social and civic infrastructure is available in a neighbourhood dictates how successful a residential destination is today.

This is why integrated townships have become the most important trend on the Indian property market today. Townships are not dependent on how proactive the municipality and private sector players in deploying social and physical infrastructure. They deploy it themselves in perfectly-contained microcosms that not only include residential projects but also office and retail complexes as well as educational and healthcare facilities.

Integrated townships ensure that their residents have everything they need for a modern comfortable and secure lifestyle accessible within easy reach, for instant use. The high demand for township properties in rapidly urbanizing cities like Pune and PCMC vouchsafes the fact that homebuyers are no longer willing to compromise on the advantages of sufficient infrastructure in their neighbourhoods.

About The Author:

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings. Woodsville in Moshi is another highly successful PCMC-based township by Pharande Spaces which is now in its 3rd phase.

PCMC’s Townships Save the Day for Pune’s Home Buyers

Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces

Townships are a new property mantra in India, and for the bigger cities they’re without any doubt the sole remaining hope for good quality living standards. Slowly but surely, residential quality of life in cities like Pune are on the decrease, and township properties are rightfully getting increasing importance as the most logical response to the increasing need for quality-based living.

In cities such as the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation, the ‘Infrastructure First’ strategy being employed by the governing authorities since several decades has served to provide highly adequate living conditions for PCMC residents. On the other hand, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has not been able to keep up to speed on its own infrastructure scenario. The heedless way with which real estate development has been taking place in Pune has not only resulted in a veritable concrete jungle but also made problems like traffic congestion, air and noise pollution and also water depletion much worse over the past several years.

PCMC – The New Townships Capital

In this depressing scenario, the massive integrated townships being developed in the booming city of PCMC has offered Pune’s citizens a new and invigorating lifestyle standard. In the PCMC, the integrated township revolution started in areas like Ravet and Moshi, and today the city’s leading developers have also established high-end townships in Punavale and on Spine Road.

Though negligence and greed are definitely operative factors in the illogical way the Pune Municipal Corporation has been developing, it also has certain limitations. In the first place, integrated township projects require substantial acreage, and large plots have essentially been completely used up in the central regions of the PMC. As consequence, the focus has now shifted to the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation, where superlative support infrastructure, affordable property rates and a scientific approach to real estate development still make townships a very workable proposal.

In integrated townships, the issues are infrastructure shortfall and deteriorating living conditions are totally negated. These projects provide an extremely high grade of living standards, set to the backdrop of tasteful natural surroundings and adequate open spaces.

Providing township-level facilities in smaller residential projects would entail prohibitive prices for the developers – and the cost escalations would have to be passed on to the property buyers. Such facilities would immediately boost a smaller residential project into the luxury category, with consummate price implications to buyers. However, as a result of the economies of scale, township developers in the PCMC are giving the township lifestyle option to buyers at prices that reasonable and attractive. 

High-quality infrastructure, open spaces and instant accessibility to every requirement of day-to-day living in these townships result in a first-class lifestyle equation since all residents in a township gain from one big integrated and centrally managed system.

Township Properties – Higher Price but Ultimate Value

As already mentioned, when a builder offers township-level facilities in smaller housing projects, the prices to consumers are comparable to those of high-end luxury residences. In townships, the vast variety of facilities, fully-integrated infrastructure as well as the availability of schools, hospitals and shopping complexes within the premises obviously means that township properties come at a price that is somewhat higher than standard multi-storey flats.

On the other hand, the added expense is vindicated by the reality that people who buy into township properties are guaranteed a greatly superior living standard – not to mention vastly higher yields on investment.

For property buyers who just don’t desire to compromise on their lifestyle choices, the township properties of PCMC are the most logical and intelligent options. The direct benefits include a healthier life thanks to open spaces and greenery, complete security, the guarantee of high-grade infrastructure and facilities within the premises, and instant accessibility to recreational facilities and retail outlets. This results in a very high measure of convenience and comfort within an entirely cosmopolitan ethos.

About The Author:

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings. Woodsville in Moshi is another highly successful PCMC-based township by Pharande Spaces which is now in its 3rd phase.

Rainwater Harvesting: Not Just an Option but A Necessity

Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces

In a land-locked city like Pune, the value of water is inescapable. Factors such as climactic changes happening at a national and global level are causing water levels to fall. Overpopulation has resulted in more and more acquisition and development of land – and, even worse, for landfills, cutting back on water bodies that were once available and accessible.

Deforestation has further compounded the deficiency of water, as this causes regional rain to eventually become unpredictable. Several areas are critically affected by a dearth of usable water – a city like Pune is, actually, a prime example of the happening throughout India.

More and more of the world’s burgeoning populations will be moving to urban areas in the years to come. As a result of accelerated property development in our cities, the greatest requirement for critical resources such as water is focused in urban areas. As a consequence, multistory residential complexes are being constructed at an extremely rapid speed.

The earth’s surface is 70% water; yet, very little of this is actually usable or drinkable by humans. It is very likely that we will shortly reach a stage when the quantity of useable water present on the earth’s surface isn’t sufficient to satisfy all of the requirements of the development occurring to accommodate the growing population.

Rainwater harvesting is the solitary realistic option to counter the growing menace of rapid water depletion – and this real and present option is definitely catching on in our cities. Rainwater harvesting involves accumulating, filtering and storing rainwater to be utilized for assorted industrial and residential purposes.

Rainwater is a clean, free source of potable water. Rainwater harvesting used in residential properties, which involves trapping rainwater from roofs and directing it into underground storage tanks or cisterns, can satisfy 50% of a regular family’s water needs.

The truth is, rainwater harvesting isn’t just a strategy to make maximum use of the natural resource – it also has minimal environmental impact. Naturally, it leads to substantial price savings on recurring water charges in residential buildings. In a city like Pune, a huge number of residential societies are dependent on expensive water tankers which extract ‘hard’ water from borewells – a process which further depletes ground water levels and causes all kinds of associated problems to the environment.

Urban water supply calls for pumping stations in addition to putting up treatment plants and supply conduits. With the rate of increase in urban population, city planning authorities cannot match utilities in the majority of Indian cities. Engineers and geologists are constantly fighting to discover new sources of water.

With borewell shafts going deeper as the hunt for more water continues in cities like Pune, water supply can actually be significantly supplemented by rainwater and decrease the pressure on the usual water supply.

When rainwater is harnessed in a housing complex, it can be utilized for assorted non-drinking functions that call for substantial volumes of water. Because rainwater can complement the traditional water supply system, this means considerably reduced utility bills.

Rainwater harvesting is equally appropriate for large manufacturing units that use up substantial amounts of water. Such industries can reduce the pressure on groundwater by making use of rainwater for all their requirements.

A perfect fallback position

Climate change has caused significant disruptions in the weather patterns in lots of Indian cities, resulting is decreased rainfall. Rainwater can be collected, stored and used during drought seasons to complement the ordinary water supply. In cities like Mumbai and Pune, the dreaded bane of rationing and water shortage is mitigated with rainwater harvesting, which also reduces the dependence on dams and water reservoirs.

When rainwater harvesting systems are used by a sufficient saturation of residential buildings in a city, there is a substantial drop in pressure on drainage systems, thereby reducing the possibility of floods, soil erosion, and surface run-offs. Rainwater harvesting is a perfect solution especially in low-lying regions, which are usually prone to floods due to over-taxed drainage systems.

The use of rainwater harvesting systems allows groundwater levels to recharge, which in turn aids in enhancing urban greenery; in fact, this is actually the sole dependable means of having green places without leeching away from the direly needed water supplies within urban areas.

Simple to set up and use

Rainwater harvesting systems are simple to put up and operate. There is absolutely no requirement for the complicated purifying systems which need to be applied to cleanse groundwater, since rainwater is pure. Rainwater collection systems use modern yet extremely simple technology, and their care simply involves occasional cleaning of pipes and the storage tanks to ensure the rainwater gathered is not contaminated.

Actually, rainwater harvesting can be used by anyone. Installation of gutters is step one for buildings that lack them, together with a filtration system to make certain that any other sort of debris or leaves will not find their way into the storage tanks. Safety precautions include having locking bars or lids to stop the breeding of mosquitoes or other forms of pollution of the stored water. Catchment areas in a city may comprise paved regions for example roads and car parks, where water may be picked for several non-drinking purposes.

Need for more government support

Most of the municipality areas of cities like Pune have a huge number of housing projects which don’t have the required rainwater pits. In quite a few cases, the lack of space and the overall design of the project may not make rainwater harvesting pits feasible at all – but where it is possible, no effort should be spared to create them and put rainwater harvesting systems in place. New apartment projects must, of course, be engineered from the world ‘go’ to incorporate rainwater harvesting systems.

While all such measures have been implemented in the more progressive PCMC (Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation) of Pune, the speed at which the Pune Municipal Corporation is moving on this front leaves a lot to be desired. Rainwater harvesting is a standard feature in PCMC’s large integrated townships.

As rain is becoming noticeably scantier, the government has already begun undertaking measures to encourage residential societies, educational institutions, and similar buildings to optimize water use and exercise better principles of water economy.

The rapid, yet necessary proliferation of paved areas and roads in our cities is preventing the proper percolation of rainwater into the ground, and causing water bottlenecks on the outskirts. Establishing regularly spaced rainwater harvesting pits in urban localities is definitely the way to go, and must be implemented in cities like Pune without further delay. Additionally, the city authorities must put in greater efforts to educate citizens about the benefits and implementation of rainwater harvesting.

About The Author:

Pharande Vaarivana Pune

Anil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings. Woodsville in Moshi is another highly successful PCMC-based township by Pharande Spaces which is now in its 3rd phase.

Demonetization: Advantage India’s Youth

– Anil Pharande, Chairman – Pharande Spaces

Digitization is the future – but until now, it had been the Indian government itself that stood against the future by encouraging cash payments and levying heavy charges on digital marketplaces. Invariably, the merchant discounts rate (the fee that is supposed to be paid to the banks) was passed onto the end customer. However, under the current Modi establishment, things have begun looking brighter.

The announcement of demonetization of high-value currency notes certainly came as a shock to the masses, but it seems that people have not only understood the reason behind the move but are also offering full support to this change. This is especially true for the younger earners and spenders in our economy. There are several favorable aspects to the younger generation that makes demonetization a welcome move at this point in time for our economy.

Firstly, the current generation is by and large rejecting many of the concepts that the previous generations believed in. Things like hoarding of assets, black money and tax evasion wherever possible are by and large unacceptable to the young contributor to the economy today. In fact, just the opposite.

The younger generation is more in favor of spending and putting their income back into the flow, rather than keeping it aside for emergencies. They believe in using credit cards and similar financial tools that don’t involve hoarding. The principled younger earners of India today prefer to be transparent taxpayers rather than find ways to evade tax and hide their income. They know and appreciate that that their tax contributes towards the betterment of the nation and assisting the lesser-privileged. This is a highly responsible generation.

Secondly, this highly tech-savvy generation knows all about digital payments. A twenty-five-year-old of today is more predisposed and equipped to making digital payments than people from the previous generation. They are more comfortable with mobile wallets than with carrying cash. The rapid penetration of smartphone technology and online payment gateways has also helped build trust, while offering convenience.

Thirdly – and most importantly – this is a generation stands firmly against any form of corruption. It’s not just about making your own lifestyle comfortable anymore but growing with the nation. They fully support the recent demonetization move’s primary intention to weed out and expose corruption in India.

They believe that:

  • Demonetization will equip authorities with the tools to track down individuals and organization who hold unaccounted cash and evade tax. With the high-value currency note ban, all cash hoarders now are forced to put their cash back in the economy and make it accounted for. The younger generation is a staunch supporter of such a level playing field, and vehemently opposes all forms of inequality
  • Black money has always been the prime funding for all kinds of illegal activities like gambling, drug use and trafficking, terrorism and inflated market pricing. This generation’s stand against such activities is very much on record
  • Demonetization will curb tax evasion and now everyone, howsoever rich or resourceful, will have to pay their taxes in full. It will not be just the middle class that will be contributing to tax-funded projects like infrastructure development, education, hospitals, schools and other such moves towards making a better and equal society. A big thumbs up from the younger generation.

As India moves more and more towards digital currency because of demonetization, the ensuing boost to online commerce will also encourage all kinds of startups that the young Indian are working or investing in. Moreover, people with lawful and accounted-for money will have nothing to fear – and the younger generation is all about living their lives free of fear – and free to explore life’s endless possibilities.

About The Author:

Pharande Vaarivana PuneAnil Pharande is Chairman of Pharande Spaces, a leading construction and development firm that develops township properties in West Pune. Pharande Promoters & Builders, the flagship company of Pharande Spaces and an ISO 9001-2000 certified company, is a pioneer in the PCMC area offering a diverse range of real estate products catering especially to the 42 sectors of Pradhikaran. The luxury township Puneville at Punavale in West Pune is among the company’s latest premium offerings. Woodsville in Moshi is another highly successful PCMC-based township by Pharande Spaces which is now in its 3rd phase.