By Akash Pharande, Managing Director – Pharande Spaces
India is a country driven by traditional sentiments, and festivals are times to celebrate and make strategic investments. Because most Indians will first think of buying homes when it comes to investment, the property market also adapts itself to these festive times. Particularly, the Gudi Padwa festive period traditionally sees intense real estate market activity since Gudi Padwa is a festival of renewal and investing in a bright future.
At its roots, Gudi Padwa celebrates the arrival of spring, which is when the earth reawakens from the dormant winter months and begins to yield rich harvests in the fields. India is not the only country that celebrates the arrival of spring, but nowhere else is it welcomed with such happiness and a sense of worship.
This is not surprising since the Indian economy relied mainly on agriculture in earlier times. A good harvest brings prosperity, and Indians still celebrate this blessing of plentitude by investing in assets that bring wealth and ensure financial security. Whether it is Punjab’s Baisakhi, Tamil Nadu’s Puthandu, Andhra Pradesh’s Yugadi or Kerala’s Vishu – the coming of spring is a period for hope and rejoicing.
In 2022, Gudi Padwa has a very special meaning to Indians. The Covid-19 pandemic had resulted in two years of uncertainty and seriously subdued economic activity, and it is only in recent months that Indians have once again regained hope and belief in the future. One interesting aspect of the pandemic years was that while Indians generally stayed away from investing in other asset classes, they actively bought homes.
Gudi Padwa has been associated with property purchases since ancient times. This year, we will see many more Indians buying homes to coincide with this auspicious period. The reason is not merely investment and wealth creation but a desire to secure the future. An owned home is traditionally the most critical asset that Indians aspire for – but in Gudi Padwa 2022, they will also be investing in security and peace of mind.
This year, Gudi Padwa arrives at a time when residential real estate has already emerged as the most popular investment for Indians. At the same time, there is a strong belief in a progressive government – and political stability is a significant sentiment booster in this country.
Also, the uncertain period of job insecurity during the active pandemic is over, and employees in the IT/ITeS sector have been getting generous salary hikes. In IT-driven cities like Pune, Bengaluru and Hyderabad, this is equal to a rich harvest – and IT employees contribute to a considerable chunk of property sales in India.
This year, Gudi Padwa also comes at the fag end of a long period during which the RBI had kept interest rates in check to foster economic recovery. Home loan interest rates will start going up again but are currently still the lowest in 15 years.
Property prices are still attractive, and many developers still offer good discounts to genuine buyers. During the Gudi Padwa period, buyers have an excellent opportunity to negotiate the best prices and secure other add-ons and freebies. But like the RBI, developers also have no option but to start increasing their prices soon because their own costs have gone through the roof.
So, even during this time of celebration and rejoicing, there is now a sense of urgency among aspiring homebuyers. There is little time left for indecisive buyers to get off the fence and get the best deals on their dream homes. It is a limited-time opportunity to buy homes at the best prices just before the new property cycle starts and prices begin to rise.
And obviously, there cannot be a better time than Gudi Padwa to make the ultimate move towards financial wellbeing and security – in other words, becoming a proud homeowner.