Real estate developers on Tuesday hailed the government's decision to allocate Rs 48,000 crore in Budget under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) and faster approvals for affordable housing in urban areas but rued that no additional tax deduction was allowed on interest paid on home loans.
"Allocation of Rs 48,000 crores towards completion of 80 lakhs home under PMAY is a welcome step. FM also announced that approvals related to land and construction particularly for Affordable Housing in the urban areas will be given priority," CREDAI President Harshvardhan Patodia said.
He also welcomed the government's focus on urban planning, especially in tier II and III cities, in the Budget.
Boman Irani – President, CREDAI-MCHI, said there has been an introduction of a revolutionary reform - one land and one registration system -- which is beneficial for the real estate ecosystem.
"Though the real estate industry analysts and developers community were hoping for some more rebates given its performance and contribution to the overall economy in the past few months. A simple point that could have added cheer to home buyers would be an increase in tax deduction for home loan interest," he added.
NAREDCO President Rajan Bandelkar said there are several provisions in the Union Budget will positively impact the real estate sector and cited example of focus on the development of logistics parks. "Easing land and construction-related approvals will help the development firms in meeting the delivery timelines," he added.
However, Bandelkar said the sector was expecting more in terms of incentives to boost sales and to fulfill the dream of Housing for All by 2022.
Naredco Vice Chairman Niranjan Hiranandani welcomed the focus to resolve long standing issues of reduction in approval timelines for land and construction.
"With rise in population & career mobility, focus on nurturing new smart tier 2-3 cities will result in a big boost for Real Estate infrastructure with cascading impact on additional job creation," he said.
Granting of infrastructure status to data centres in lieu of impetus to data localization and protect data sovereignty is shot in the arm, he said, adding that this would enable the data centres industry to avail long & cheap credit financing.
Puravankara Ltd MD Ashish R Puravankara said "with regards to the housing sector, we are pleased that the Government has revoked custom duties levied on stainless steel and High Steel Bars. We are hopeful that these savings are passed down to the developers so that the end-users can benefit; this is yet to be determined."
Nitesh Kumar MD & CEO Emami Realty Ltd, said the government's focus on infrastructure and sustainability will drive real estate growth.
Gaurs group CMD Manoj Gaur lauded the focus on affordable housing and urban planning in the Budget. "Our long standing demand of industry status for the real estate sector remains unaddressed this year and we hope authorities look into it in the coming years," he said.
Signature Global Chairman Pradeep Aggarwal said the government has focused on affordable housing this Budget.
Nayan Raheja of Raheja Developers said the real estate sector's long-standing demand has not been addressed in the Budget. "We've been requesting industry status for the entire sector as well as single-window clearance to ensure smooth operations, but the government has yet to respond."
Supertech Chairman R K Arora said: "PMAY has been given due importance, however largely through government's flagship programmes rather than the incentives real estate development companies were hoping for."
Chintels MD Prashant Solomon said the government's focus on increased urbanisation, planning and governance along with comprehensive sector development is a step in the right direction.
"With enhanced focus on modernizing and upgrading of infrastructure, urban capacity building, in addition to making Data Centre - part of infrastructure and strengthening of public transport systems, will lead to job creation that will fuel fresh demand in the real estate sector," Wave Chairman Manpreet Singh Chaddha said.
Hawelia group Chairman Rattan Hawelia said the budget is disappointing for the real estate sector. "Substantial announcements, such as, provision of input-tax credit in GST, policy reforms for completion of halted projects, tax rebate benefits for home loan interest, etc, are by and large remained unaddressed."
Suren Goyal, Partner, RPS Group, said the revamping of SEZ Act will also assist in the growth of the economy.