Publication: 99 Acres
Expert Speak | Nov 26, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted us in numerous ways. Every sector of the economy has taken a beating under the circumstances, including the real estate sector. Hence, the demand and supply dynamics in the property market are expected to change like never before.
The real estate industry will have to reinvent itself to comprehend, plan and execute in novel ways to fulfil the newly arising requirements. Creative disruption is the need of the hour and developers need to innovate and fast-track the adoption of latest technologies- such as construction technologies, Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), and home automation. From now on, the project planning would have to be inclusive of social distancing norms, newer construction methods, mobility and health safety considerations.
The changing scenario
Due to the lockdown, a large number of people switched to the work-from-home model, and the concept has picked up steam, especially for the workforce in the IT and related sectors. Post-COVID-19, offices shall reopen and buzz again, but it would definitely not be the same as before. This will affect the commercial and residential segments. Hence, the realty sector needs unique ways to deal with these changes to stay afloat.
Specific new patterns that are expected to rise in the post-COVID-19 world include:
COVID-19 has changed a buyer’s way of thinking. Owning a home has become essential despite an economic slump and the accompanying uncertainty. People who previously felt comfortable living in rented spaces are planning to buy a home as that is the only place where one can feel safe and secure. Hence, the residential sector is bound to gain prominence over offices and will influence our real estate choices.
Distance would not matter.
Remote working is here to stay for long, even after the pandemic gets over. Many companies will include work-from-home in some manner in their business models for the sake of their employees’ safety. Therefore, commuting will no longer be an issue for those working from homes, and there would not be a need to buy a house closer to one’s workplace. Consequently, people will be open to moving to a location depending on other factors such as proximity to medical facilities and educational institutions.
The realty sector has been swift in its transition to the digital medium. It has seen digitisation in terms of transactions, capital deployment, virtual tours, and property management and consumption patterns. Even Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Virtual Reality (VR) have played a significant role in enhancing the customer experience.
High demand for affordable homes
In recent years, several initiatives by the Government have given a significant thrust to the affordable housing sector. And as many were forced to leave their rented accommodations during the lockdown and go back home, they will now look for affordable options to cater to their residential requirements.
In the post-COVID-19 era, there is going to be a massive shift in homebuyers behaviour. While the realty sector has suffered due the decreased cash flow, it has also been quick in adopting digitisation, which will surely outlive the pandemic impact and revive the realty industry.