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Flash Sale: Good opportunity to scout for properties

But buyers will need to aggressively follow up after receiving the coupon because the conversion time is short

Tinesh Bhasin  |  Mumbai 

For potential home buyers, the coming three days (Friday-Sunday) could be a great opportunity to purchase property. With two companies — and com — organising a Realty Flash Sale (IRFS) that will showcase properties from all major cities and discounts of up 20 per cent,potential buyers could get lucky. These online sites have tied up with 50 builders, including Tata Housing, Shapoorji Pallonji, and Shriram Properties, Sobha. Vikram Kotnis, managing director of Amura, says this has been organised because most buyers are sitting on the fence waiting for prices to correct further. He believes prices in most markets have bottomed out and it’s the best opportunity to buy a house. So, these companies went to developers and asked them to pass the marketing cost to customers so that they would make a purchase now rather than wait. “Currently, the sales and marketing overhead for a developer ranges from 6 – 12 per cent,” says Kotnis.

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The discounts are not a straight reduction on the selling price. While some may give free stamp duty and registration, others would waive off floor rise (like Hiranandani Constructions), offer free second parking, and value adds at no extra cost, such as fully furnished homes.The process is quite simple. Once buyers short list a house, they will receive a coupon specifying the discounts. After the online event ends June 28 (Sunday), users will need to take the coupon to respective developers and book the property. The coupon will be valid for either seven days or until the stock lasts. Already 40,000 people have registered for the Flash Sale. The properties showcased will be for all budgets, from Rs 45 lakh to over Rs 10 crore. These two companies put in some safeguards: They also have vetted the permissions these realty players have obtained. Most projects featured in the sale are already in various stages of construction. Further, to ensure the buyers are protected, there will be no money involved when a user selects a property online. There is word of caution though. All the properties are under construction. Experts say that buyers are already facing issues such as construction delays, builder asking for extra money citing some new provisions, and dishonouring contracts.

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As a safeguard, an official with a property consultancy firm says, buyers should visit the site and see the activity at the project.“Buying a property is not a day-to-day commodity. The stakes are too high,” says A S Sivaramakrishnan, head - residential services, CBRE South Asia. Until about five years back, pricing was the game changer but delays have changed that, he explains. A person buying a house three – four years back at say Rs 10,000 a square foot is still waiting for the project to be delivered. The seven-daytime for consumers to redeem the coupons is also short feels, Ashutosh Limaye, head research & REIS, JLL India. Unless buyers have already visited the projects before and know about the offering, seven days might be too short.

In fact, Jayakumar of com and Kotnis of Amura suggest that despite they have done their best to put in the safeguards, buyers need to carry out their owndue diligence. “They need to take the legal opinion, check if the projects are accredited by banks, if the carpet area meets their expectations, and the compensation a developer is willing to give in case of delays,” says Kotnis.

First Published: Wed, June 24 2015. 23:27 IST