Maharashtra May Witness Rise In Women Homebuyers
Maharashtra government’s decision to give women homebuyers a 1% concession in stamp duty is expected to increase their share in owning a home.
By Ateeq Shaikh
With existing concession on stamp duty in Maharashtra ending later this month, starting April, families may opt for buying property on their mother’s, wife’s or daughter’s names to avail 1% discount on stamp duty for women.
In August, Maharashtra government had announced a discount in stamp duty by 3% and 2% between September-December 2020 and January-March 2021, respectively. Earlier this week, the Maharashtra government in its Budget proposed a 1% concession in stamp duty for women homebuyers, which means stamp duty payment of 4%.
Industry players shared that those who may miss out on availing the ongoing 2% stamp duty benefit may opt booking a home in the names of their mother, wife or daughter. Overall, the move may help in increasing women’s share of property ownership, which has been on a rise.
“The Maharashtra government’s announcement on additional stamp duty reduction will encourage and empower women homebuyers. This will not only instill confidence in them but also drive sales growth in the real estate market,” said Chintan Sheth, Director, Ashwin Sheth Group.
As per a recent Anarock survey, for 62% women, real estate is the preferred investment asset class for investment as compared to 54% men who prefer stock market, fixed deposit and gold.
The findings of the study also showed that at least 82% of women will buy a home for end-use, 18% for investment; in contrast, 68% men will buy for end-use and 34% for investment. With the tax benefits that are available combined with the lowest home loan interest rate in over a decade, over 70% of women respondents consider this to be an ideal time to buy a property.
“Women have always been an influencing factor in the purchase of a new home. The proposal of registering homes, with the eligibility to benefit from the 1% discount on stamp duty, encourages women to own a house and be independent. We hope that the proposal goes through, and we see many women homebuyers and families register homes on their mother, spouses, or daughters name to avail of the benefit. Those homebuyers who may miss out on the ongoing stamp duty cut of 2% can still have an opportunity in the upcoming fiscal thereby pushing the sales momentum in the coming months as well,” said Sarat Sinha, AVP & Head of Marketing, Adhiraj Constructions Pvt Ltd.
Rohan Khatau, Director, CCI Projects Pvt Ltd, developer of Rivali Park also had similar opinion to share, “Home purchases among women have been increasing Year-on-Year. Maharashtra government’s budget proposal of reducing 1% stamp duty to transfer house or registration of sale deeds in the name of a woman will accelerate the homebuying trend. Hereon, we would witness rise in enquiries and sales coming in from both consumer segments. There is also a possibility of families opting to register the property in the wife’s or daughter’s or mother’s name to avail the latest benefit.”
“The incentive proposed by the state government will create an increased interest among women home-buyers and their families who prefer real estate to be an asset building investment. With the ongoing stamp-duty reduction applicable till end of March 2021, this 1% discount from April will ensure the momentum in sales continues with families likely to opt buying a property on the names of their women family members in order to avail the benefit,” said Milind Korde, Founder and Managing Director, Ananta Landwise, Development Managers of Bluegrass Residences.
Interestingly, women’s preference for real estate has risen post-COVID-19 – from 57% votes in the pre-COVID survey to 62% in the current edition of Anarock’s study.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS FOR WOMEN?
Indian women enjoy multiple benefits when buying homes:
• Various government policies support and promote women homeownership in India. For instance, to avail homes under the government’s flagship scheme Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (PMAY) introduced in 2015, homes have to be mandatorily registered either in a woman’s name or with women as co-owners. This was done to empower women of the lower-income segments.
• Lower stamp duty is another benefit that women enjoy while buying a property. Stamp duty charges are lower if property registration is executed in the name of a woman, although these charges vary from state to state. The exemption for women varies between 1-2% across different states. In some cases, it might even vary within a particular state, based on the classification of regions as ‘urban’ and ‘rural’. For instance, Delhi, UP, Rajasthan, Punjab and Haryana offer relaxation in stamp duty for women buyers. Punjab has a 4% difference between male and female homebuyers.
• Many banks such as SBI, ICICI, HDFC, etc. offer discounted home loan rates to women as compared to men. This again varies from bank to bank, but the difference can be as much as 0.25%. The prevailing low property rates coupled with home loans rates at a 15-year low are certainly an advantage.
• To avail of certain tax benefits, a woman can also become the joint owner of a property with her husband and, if she has a separate source of income, both can claim tax deductions individually.
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