Indian residential real estate is increasingly driven by end-users – and women homebuyers are emerging as major contributors towards this trend. The latest ANAROCK-LIC Housing Finance Consumer Sentiment Survey indicates that as many as 77% women home seekers are looking to buy property for end-use; merely 23% will buy homes as investments. In contrast, approx. 62% men are looking to buy property for end-use and 38% for investment purpose.
Notably, for 87% women end-user homebuyers, these will be their first homes.
Anuj Puri, Chairman – ANAROCK Property Consultants says, “The growing dominance of women homebuyers has been an ongoing phenomenon over the last few years, especially in urban centres. Now, their preferences are also distinctly shaping newer trends. While ‘proximity to workplace’ was the top priority for both male and female survey participants looking to buy homes, 35% of the polled women consider suitable amenities within a housing project the second-most important factor. For men, the second-most important factor was the largest size they can afford.”
Trends also reveal that more and more young women buyers are now coming forward to buy a property. 47% women property seekers polled in the survey were in the age bracket of 25-35 years, followed by 41% in the 35-45 years age. Interestingly, 5% women property seekers were also aged within 25 years. In contrast, 47% male home seekers were in the 35-45 years age bracket, while 34% were aged between 25-35 years.
Women homebuyers’ preferences – the latest trends
- MMR the most-preferred city: On being asked about the city they would like to invest in other than where they are currently residing, at least 26% of the polled women voted for MMR as the top choice among all cities, followed by 22% preferring NCR and 20% stating Bangalore as their primary choice. Pune was next with 12% votes in its favour, followed by Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad with 8%, 5% and 3% votes respectively. 5% women prefer to invest in tier 2 & 3 cities.
- Investment diversification and women-specific incentives are major motivators: Women across urban India are buying property either to diversify their investment portfolios and/or to avail multiple benefits exclusive to women. These range from tax benefits to reduced home loan interest rates by some banks, and also reduced stamp duty and registration charges across different states.
- Mid-segment housing is in highest demand: At least 40% women home seekers prefer a property in the mid-segment price bracket with ticket sizes between INR 45-90 lakh, followed by 35% preferring the affordable segment priced within INR 45 lakh. Only 3% women will consider buying luxury properties priced over INR 1.5 Crore – as against 12% men who prefer to buy within this category.
- Spacious 2 BHKs the top choice: A whopping 50% women prefer to buy large 2 BHKs sized between 800-1,200 sq. ft. area, against just 13% voting for small 2BHKs within 600 sq. ft. With MMR the top city for women investors, the preference for larger sizes is remarkable and stands testimony to increased purchasing power.
- Women more brand conscious than men: 60% women prefer buying homes from branded developers; male participants’ preference is equally divided between branded and non-branded developers – i.e. 50% each.
- Ready properties or those nearing completion within 6 months top choice: At least 56% women will only consider buying such homes, followed by 26% open to buying properties that will be completed within a year. Merely 18% preferred newly-launched projects.