May 2020
22

Impact of RBI’s Repo Rate cut and extension of EMI loan moratorium on Indian Real Estate Market

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Dhruv Agarwala, Group CEO, Housing.com, Makaan.com and Proptiger.com 

With a view to supporting the economy in general and real estate in particular in the wake of Covid-19, the government has in the recent past made a series of announcements. The RBI decision to further reduce the repo rate to 4% is a major step in that direction. The move will not only help developers but also homebuyers who have been under extreme pressure due to the prolonged lockdown which has impacted their income. This along with the move of extending loan moratorium for another three months will be extremely helpful in lowering the burden for those who are paying EMIs or using credit cards and lower financial stress. What needs to be seen is how quickly the banks reflect this change in their respective rates.

 

Ashish R. Puravankara, Managing Director, Puravankara Limited

"As of today, the entire industry, and not just Real Estate sector, is going through unpredictable challenges. In the last year, the Real Estate sector saw ebbs and flows and while the Q4 of FY1920 looked promising, we were hit by the global pandemic. At this point, it is very important to boost customer sentiments and the announcement by RBI today on revised REPO rate standing at 4% , and this along with the extension of moratoriums until August 31st will provide a relief to home buyers. The further reduction of the REPO rate by 40 bps will aid in ensuring adequate flow of capital in the market. We hope that all banks will incorporate the new announcements and pass down the benefits to loan seekers.

While initiatives like this will certainly help in keeping the industry sentiments intact and motivate realtors, all the stakeholders of the sector should remain invested in bringing reforms and measures that will improve buyer sentiments."

 

Amit Modi, President-Elect CREDAI Western UP and Director ABA Corp

RBI’s recent announcements will further provide more relief to several Indians who have been forced to sit home in the wake of the novel coronavirus outbreak, but first, all the banks need to make sure that there is a quick transmission of the announced rate cuts to the end consumer, else the whole effort will be futile. We also wholeheartedly welcome the extension of 3 month moratorium on EMIs till 31 August and this should be applicable right away to bring relief to millions of homebuyers across the nation. We feel that RBI and the Government should proactively make sure that these benefits reach the end consumer, especially now that there is a 40 basis point cut and in the cash reserve ratio to ensure sufficient liquidity in the system.

 

Mr. Bijay Agarwal, MD, Salarpuria Sattva Group

“In challenging times like this, we welcome favourable economic pronouncement by RBI. Reducing the policy repo rate by 40 basis points, RBI has signalled lower lending rates to borrowers.

This move is expected to ease liquidity for developers and enable banks to lend more. This revision will additionally aid the banks to lower home loan interest rates, and pass on the benefit to customers. We are also expecting the rate to further decline, thus increasing the purchasing power of the public to invest in real estate. With low EMI’s, the industry can also look forward to more sales and boost the demand for housing. 

The industry welcomes the extension of term loan moratorium till August 31. This will also provide some respite as the borrowers will not have to repay the accumulated interest on the loan immediately after the end of the moratorium.”

 

Pradeep Aggarwal, Founder & Chairman, Signature Global and Chairman, ASSOCHAM – National Council on Real estate, Housing & Urban Development

Now the situation for homebuyers might improve further as home loan interest rates are expected to come down further. People, who have decided to buy a home during the lockdown period will take a quick decision if banks pass on the benefit. Steps by the RBI are aimed at easing the economy. Affordable housing will benefit the most as the buyers of this segment are very particular about the EMIs. With historically low EMIs, people will go out to buy and thus increase the demand. Now government has to come out with steps to help the developers working in this segment so that projects can be completed without any hindrance.

 

Ankit Kansal, MD & CEO, 360 Realtors

The RBI measures to reduce the repo rate & reverse repo rate is in continuation of the govt. policies to build liquidity & enhance its circulation in the system. The Real Estate welcomes the prudent step. It will help in managing supply-side bottlenecks by providing better and easier credits to the developers. Likewise it will boost demand in the form of cheaper home loans. The timing is also apt as everywhere we can see the partial suspension of the lockdown and things are gradually coming back to normal. In such circumstances, a positive step like this can give further confidence & foster faster revival.

 

Manoj Gaur, MD, Gaurs Group and Chairman, Affordable Housing Committee, CREDAI (National)

The latest 40 basis point reduction and the earlier rate revisions by RBI are a welcome move for sure which should help the real estate borrower in the long run if passed on and implemented by all banks and financial institutions. But, We are seeing that the benefit is not  being passed on and the effect on actual lending rate is little or almost negligible. So, till the time RBI makes it mandatory for banks to reduce lending rate at the same time, these reductions will have negligible effect on real estate market which is reeling under COVID-19 situation.

 

Prateek Mittal, Executive Director, Sushma Group

We welcome this announcement by the RBI governor to reduce the repo rate by 40 bps to from 4.4 % to 4 %. Holding such a prominent position in in building the country’s economy, the realty sector will garner extensive benefits and the reduced repo rate will hugely support the buyer and boost the demand . Along with that the extended term loan moratorium period will provide the relief towards liquidity for developers to focus on faster execution of projects.

 

Uddhav Poddar, MD, Bhumika Group

We welcome the further reduction of policy rates by 40 basis points announced today, with this round of reduction the lending rates are like to be at the lowest in 10-15 years. The extension of loan moratorium by another 3-months will help a vast majority of people tide through this period. However, we were expecting RBI to allow a one time restructuring of loans seeing the pain across sectors, and we hope to hear some announcement in that regard soon.

 

Harvinder Singh Sikka, MD, Sikka Group

This time it is likely that banks will transmit the benefits to customers quickly as RBI is likely to keep a watch on it. In the current scenario it was important to take steps that can make the economy start recovering. The latest announcements indicate that RBI is likely to ease it’s monetary policy to financial system. Banks also should take a leaf out of this and extend loans to real estate sector, which in turn will play a role in the economy growth.

 

Vikas Bhasin, CMD, Saya Homes

RBI on its part is showing seriousness towards the health of economy. Now we hope that banks should pass on the benefit to the buyers in quick time. The demand for homes will increase further as home loan interest rates will come down to a historic low. It is good news for the real estate sector.

 

Dhiraj Jain, Director, Mahagun Group

After the latest announcement by the RBI we expect the demand to go up. The fence sitters will have no better time to buy then the current period. People have already assessed the importance of owning a home, which was clear from the bookings during the lockdown period. The government must now step forward and give relief package to the sector so that things move smoothly.

 

Yash Miglani, MD, Migsun Group

We are happy to see that the government and apex bank are making efforts like never before to overcome the damage done to the economy due to Covid-19. Reduced repo rates are likely to benefit borrowers and developers. The extension on loan moratorium will support the people in these trying times. But as real estate is passing through a challenging phase, one time loan restructuring that has been a long standing demand is warranted at the earliest.

 

Mr Rakesh Reddy, Director, Aparna Constructions & Estates

Since the lockdown period has been extended, the relief measures must adapt accordingly. The RBI announcement is a welcome move to ease the short-term financial burden for all citizens of India and help maintain liquidity as the economy recovers. The measures outline plans to improve functioning of markets, increase investments by FPIs by voluntary retention route, support exports and imports, and allow extension of measures to ease financial stress. The fiscal, monetary and administrative measures will create conditions that will enable a gradual economic revival as we ease out of the lockdown. The further repo rate cut of 40 basis points to 4% is a positive move, but the transmission of these rate cuts must be implemented with immediate effect to effectively bolster the economy. The reverse repo rate cut to 3.35% ensures banks are incentivised to lend to productive sectors instead of passively depositing funds. The extension of the moratorium on term loan repayments for another 3 months will be especially helpful for businesses with stretched financials due to the lockdown. Overall, the accommodative policy stance taken by the central bank will boost market sentiment and lend confidence to the financial system.”

Updated: 23 May 2020
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