With the 21st century millennial women becoming progressive and increasingly financially independent, there is a distinct shift in their investment preferences -- from gold and fixed deposits to real estate.
In the latest Anarock-LIC Housing Finance Ltd consumer sentiment survey, nearly 57 per cent women respondents preferred real estate as an investment asset class followed by 28 per cent for the stock market, 11 per cent for fixed deposits and a mere 4 per cent for gold.
Among those looking to buy property from an investment perspective, nearly 45 per cent of women home seekers will sell the property after appropriate appreciation while 32 per cent will prefer to earn a steady rental.
Only 23 per cent are looking to build it as an asset for the future, the survey findings show.
At the same time, merely 18 prefer a newly launched property while 58 per cent will opt for those that will be ready within a year and 24 per cent will buy ready homes.
According to the survey, 63 per cent of women prefer 2 BHK (bedroom, hall and kitchen) followed by 23 per cent preferring 3 BHK and merely 14 per cent seeking 1 BHK.
"Contrary to the increasing conservative preference for compact homes, the Indian millennial woman does not want to compromise on property size and among those seeking 2 BHKs, more than 50 per cent are seeking large-size ones," said Anuj Puri, Chairman at Anarock Property Consultants.
These trends vouchsafe that women are emerging as a critical homebuyer segment in India -- not just a niche segment -- and that marketers and developers must re-strategise their business approach to include them as a major target audience.
The rapid increase in women homebuyers across the country has also prompted the government to give them added benefits.
To empower women of the low-income segment as per the Housing for All by 2022 mission, the government has also made it mandatory for them to be either co-owners or sole owners of affordable homes.
Lower stamp duty charges, low home loan interest rates and tax deductions are some of the benefits they are entitled to while buying a property.
Puri quotes a famous saying: the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. "This is so apt today as women are excelling across sectors and increasing making their mark in a male-dominated world."
While any other relationship status may change in today's rapidly-evolving socio-economic scenario, owning a home in her name gives her the ultimate security in a changing world, said Puri.
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