Realtors mull investing in digital space for property viewing: Report

New Delhi, April 1 (IANS) Real estate players are looking to invest more in the digital space for property views and walk-through, as the sector goes through absolute standstill amidst the nation-wide lockdown, according to a report by 360 Realtors.

It said that although the sector currently is currently witnessing very low demand, developers can cache in several opportunities during the crisis.

“As every distress is an opportunity to transform, there are also a lot of hidden opportunities for the sector amidst the current crisis. The fraternity is once again looking forward to investing more in online platforms, digital walkthroughs, innovative transaction spaces, etc. that can facilitate site visit & transaction digitally without the hassle of physical site visits,” said the report.

Ankit Kansal, Founder and MD 360 of Realtors said: “This crisis has once again necessitated the need for investing in online meetings, digital walkthroughs, and tech enabled transaction platforms. Till now such things were part of academic discussions. But now, we will surely see more investments in developing such online platforms.”

Further, as the stock market is already bearish and the banking and financial sector is going through tough times, there might be a further revival in interest for real estate as an asset class amongst the investor fraternity, it observed.

As a hard asset, real estate is believed to be a safe tool to invest to neutralise any possible inflationary pressure and mitigate market-induced risks.

On the impact on site visits due to the coronavirus crisis, it said that till the third week of March, site visits and physical inspection of properties in Gurgaon have reduced to the tune of 40 per cent, when compared to the same period a month before.

“The reduction has been even higher in markets like Pune and Noida. Pune has seen one of the hardest hits, as site visits have come down by almost three quarters,” said the report.

Although telephonic inquiries have also reduced, the decline is not very steep, it said.

As per 360 Realtors, it might take some time to evaluate the long-term loss in the industry, triggered from the outbreak of COVID-19.

As of March, new launches have either been suspended or have been delayed due to the pandemic.

Developers are taking a backseat and are back to the drawing board to relook into their sales strategy.

“This time of the year usually sees a lot of festive offers & freebies from the developers; however, not this time,” it said.