Realtors, battling the liquidity crisis, hope that the government will come to their rescue. The sector expects that the current measures announced are not enough to lift the beleaguered sector around and any further delay in doing so may turn many assets into bad which the banking and realty sectors can ill afford at this juncture.
The sector is still expecting one-time debt restructuring for the industry, last-mile funding for the stuck projects, concessions in GST and stamp duty and lowering of interest rates on home loans to boost housing demand. Small players/ developers are still unable to garner the requite liquidity from the banks or any other financial institution, complain some realtors.
It may be recalled here that Mr Piyush Goyal, Union Commerce Minister, recently in a webinar arranged by NAREDCO had said “We will try to provide some concession on ready reckoner rates. Even if we (the government) are not doing anything, you have to sell (the unsold inventory of housing stocks at reduced prices).” He firmly believed that the realtors had no option but to reduce the prices. A similar view was expressed by the minister of Road Transport and Highways, Mr Nitin Gadkari earlier. Mr Goyal said in the webinar that just because the realtors had bought land at higher prices, the government cannot help them to hold on to their inventory till the market improves. “Market is not improving in a hurry,” the Commerce Minister said in the webinar.
The government on its part had announced that COVID-19 related disruption is to be treated as force majeure under Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act provision and registration and project completion timelines would be extended by 6 months. Regulatory authorities may extend this for another period of upto three months, if needed. Till date 23 states’ Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) have extended registration of projects by 6 months and one by 9 months and as advised by the ministry, in order to safeguard the interest of all stakeholders especially home buyers and to ensure delivery of houses/flats to them.