By Lincoln Bennet Rodrigues
New Delhi– The Covid-19 crisis has fundamentally altered the way we live our lives. Homes have gained more importance. For many people, the home has become a hub from which we work, exercise, learn, socialize and relax. The pandemic has drastically brought a shift in the short-term and long-term investment perspective of buyers and they now have more time to reflect on the way they live and use their space before making their investment decisions. This significant shift in the behaviour of buyers has further boosted demand for a second or holiday home market.
While earlier rental income or capital appreciation were factors governing the decisions of buyers to invest in a holiday home, the Covid-19 outbreak now has made people realise the need for a home, which is safe and located away from urban hotspots. Urban India’s increasing quest for solitude and the desire to log out of choking, polluted and hectic city life and live in a serene space within the lap of nature are the key factors contributing to the demand for luxury holiday homes. People are now shifting their focus to something that offers more personal value, like a holiday home, which allows them to enjoy the additional benefit of a safe getaway at an owned place.
Over the past few years, Indians have become increasingly aware of the need to maintain a healthy work-life balance. Owning a luxury holiday home in Goa is also an increasing trend for buyers who look at it as luxury living. A few other significant factors have made an investment in a second or holiday home a significant trend:
The desire for spacious homes and safety
For the majority of buyers, second homes are no longer an investment decision for rental income and future appreciation. The overall health, hygiene and wellness concerns of Covid-19 have pivoted focus towards large holiday homes amid verdant greenery. Spacious homes enable individuals to rejuvenate and unwind in tranquility at their own property. From a safety perspective, the strategic location of second-holiday homes and amenities has made them a crucial option for buyers. At the same time, there has been a demand for smart holiday homes with technologies that match global standards. Facing situations like quarantine and lockdown, people have realized the importance of larger spaces and self-sustained communities in living a healthy life.
Greater global exposure
Indians are travelling abroad like never before and have good exposure to lifestyles in countries like the US, UK, Australia, UAE, and in the European continent. They look for a replication of such lifestyles in India and want holiday homes that fulfil their dreams of luxurious living. Holiday homes in Goa, for instance, have seen much prominence and appreciation and are now considered a lifestyle statement and a reflection of one’s social status. As per a Sotheby’s Realty report, Indians are searching for million-dollar homes and there’s a huge surge in online property search the world over. Indians are only next to Americans searching online for the best deals.
Themed holiday homes
Themed holiday homes have become a major trend in India, and Goa is a preferred destination with English, French, Portuguese or Balinese homes. These exclusive homes are appreciated for their architecture and high standards of aesthetics. Buyers are no longer hesitant to experiment with this upscale life and premium developers are more than willing to embrace this change. People are essentially looking for homes that provide a sophisticated living experience.
A positive climate to buy holiday homes
Customers are enjoying the lowest home loan interest rates in decades and this has prompted them to go in for holiday homes. Home loans at pocket-friendly interest rates promote savings while creating an asset for end-use or investment purposes. This provides borrowers with an option to increase the loan amount, helping broaden their choice for a more luxurious property that is inclusive of state-of-the-art amenities and lifestyle facilities. Stimulus packages and cuts in stamp duty to have made the current time absolutely right to end-users to invest in dream holiday homes.
V-shaped recovery on the anvil
With everyone banking on a sharp, V-shaped recovery (taking into account the recent surge) and growth of the economy to pre-Covid-19 levels in the wake of the extensive vaccination drive, the future is poised to be strong for high-value home transactions. People are considering a shift of residence, away from the crowded cities to luxurious holiday homes. What was once an aspiration is now emerging as a safe and sensible real estate investment, and this will continue to shape the holiday homes market and fuel the growth of the larger economy.
A recent survey by a real estate portal shows that 82 percent of people are looking to make a purchase in 2021. Real estate has always been considered to be a growing industry; it is also the safest and most trustworthy investment in the present market conditions. Even before the pandemic hit India, the tranquil charm of Goa has attracted many investors looking to buy vacation or holiday homes. Not only do they generate good rentals, buying a second home in Goa has also been aspirational for many Indians as they aspire to move up the economic ladder.
With greater disposable incomes, high salaried professionals, HNIs, NRIs, and people returning to their home country after retirement will continue to drive homes which are a necessity. The ‘own home’ is where people long to be in the present circumstances and the primary wellbeing and lifestyle will be defined by owning a home of their choice. Therefore, riding on the wave of sustainability and prospective investment, the holiday home will continue to be the most sought-after real estate segment for buyers in the ‘New World’. (IANS)