“India has one of the largest numbers of retail outlets in the world. The sector is witnessing exponential growth with retail developments taking place not only in major cities and metros but even in tier-II and tier-III cities in India” elaborates Dr. Swati Piramal, President of Assocham.
The major factors fuelling the growth are:
-Increase in disposable income of people -Improving lifestyles -Increasing international exposure -Growing aspirations among customers-India has a large middle class that is considered to be major potential customer groups -The Indian youth is perceived as trend setters and decision makers and also as large contributors to the retail phenomenon -Tourist spending in India is increasing, which also contributes to the retail boom A number of changes have taken place on the Indian retail front such as exponentially increased availability of international brands, increasing number of malls and hypermarkets as a result of easy availability of retail space. For the customer, the emphasis has shifted from reasonable pricing to convenience, efficiency and ambience. With the Indian government having opened up the doors for FDI, the entry of foreign retailers into the country has become easier. Food and grocery are the two categories in the Indian retail sector which offer the most promising opportunities. Apart from this, the other areas where there are vast possibilities for Indian retailers are family entertainment, jewellery, apparel, electronics and consumer durables. Indian retailers are also trying to create a sustainable niche for themselves in areas such as books, gifts and music with strong branding and lifestyle connotations.
Let’s face it: when it comes to high fashion, fine food, and fun family entertainment, Punjab’s newest attraction, the AlphaOne in Amritsar, has it all - and then some. So it’s not surprising that the stunning retail and entertainment complex attracted over 250,000 eager visitors since its March 5 grand opening, which, by the way, saw total sales of over 2 crore rupees! In fact, some noted dignitaries like Col. RS “Pickles” Sodhi MD, AlphaG:Corp and his wife, Mrs. Nafisa Ali Sodhi, as well as some top retailers and traders in Punjab joined the throngs of eager shoppers to enjoy the over 2 million square feet of pure retail bliss.
With 170 stores, including United Colors of Benetton, Tommy Hilfiger, Levi’s, The Body Shop, Adidas, Nike, Puma, Catmoss, and Beverly Hills Polo Club to name a few, shoppers found a mix of regional, national and international brands. In addition to the top-notch retail stores, AlphaOne pays homage to the true spirit of Punjab with the Amritsari Bazaar – a replication of the world-famous Hall Bazaar of Amritsar – that boasts an impressive 51 stores. Here, shoppers will find a customer-friendly, convenient place to buy exquisite handicrafts and specialties of Punjab.
Although there are many forms of taxes in India like income tax, sales tax, etc, yet the property tax is the single largest source of revenue for the Government. The tax paid is utilized to make roads, sewer systems, maintenance of parks, developments in infrastructure, et al.
India’s property tax rates have been rationalized in the last 10-15 years as the entire taxation system has undergone a change. These changes have evolved the system and raised it to prevailing international standards as the tax rates have been rationalized and tax laws simplified resulting in better compliance, ease of tax payment, better enforcement and most of all, collections.
The revenue that can be generated from property taxation depends directly on the two main components of a property tax: the tax base (assessed value of real property interests on reserve) and the tax rate. The rate of taxation is applied to the assessed value of real property to arrive at the amount of tax levied. The rates bylaw determines the rate at which each class of interests on reserve is to be taxed.
India with a growing population and a workforce will always have increasing requirements in real estate, be it residential, commercial, industrial, retail or entertainment and as such the Indian Government encourages investments in properties with ever-evolving measures.
NRIs/foreigners are permitted to own property in India in most of the categories. However, there are certain categories like agricultural land, land for housing project wherein NRIs/foreigners are specifically not entitled to own property. The laws applicable to NRIs would be Income Tax Act, Wealth Tax Act, Gift Tax Act, Transfer of Property Act and FEMA among others and the implications would depend upon the facts of each case.
Important Taxes levied by Central and State Governments:
Capital Gains Tax: Capital gains tax is a tax charged on capital gains, the profit realized on the sale of a non-inventory asset that was purchased at a lower price. The most common capital gains are realized from the sale of property. Stamp Duties: Stamp duty is a tax, much like the sales tax and income tax that are collected by the Government. If you want to know the market value of your property and the stamp duty amount on it, you need to find out the stamp duty amount applicable to you as per the market value. For example, 3% stamp duty plus additional 5% duty in form of surcharge under the Delhi Municipal Corporate Act, 1957. Rental Income: Rental income has to be taxed under the head 'Income from house property’. Deductions are available under Section 23 and Section 24 of the Act. It may be noted that a deduction is available for repairs, whether incurred or not. Actual expenses are deductible, except for municipal rate. Goods and Service Tax: The goods and services tax (GST) is likely to result in a reduction in property prices. The 13th Finance Commission has recommended levying GST on all newly constructed property for first sale, allowing credit to the developer for input tax (incurred on construction material) paid at the time of construction and including stamp duty under GST to facilitate input credit. In case the stamp duty is subsumed into GST, the developers would be able to claim credit of the stamp duty paid on the purchase of land to be used for development of real estate. The developer would also be able to claim credit of the taxes paid on inputs and input services used for construction of real estate for payment of stamp duty thus reducing the cascading effect and improve liquidity.
In case of immovable property being sold within a period of 36 months from the acquisition, the gain arising from there would be short-term capital gain and liability for taxation would be at 30%. In case the immovable property that has been held for more than 36 months, the gain would be long-term capital gain and the tax thereon would be at the rate of 20%.
The Finance Minister, Mr. Pranab Mukherjee besides announcing an interest subsidy of 1% for one year on housing loans of up to Rs. 10 lakh for properties worth less than Rs. 20 lakh also allowed developers of housing projects a tax holiday under section 80 IB (10) of the Income Tax Act on profits from projects approved between April 1, 2007 and March 31, 2008, provided the projects are completed on or before March 31, 2012. He also conveyed to the developers that the benefits of this tax break must pass on to the consumers. Accordingly, stamp duty value in case of immovable property and fair market value in case of movable property too will be computed to encourage healthy movement in this most crucial sector.
Golf View Corporate Towers
Real Estate Asset Management (REAM), one of the professional strengths of Alpha G:Corp and a contemporary international practice that Alpha G:Corp pioneered in India in 2004, entails the process of overseeing property performance with the goal of enhancing value and consistently maximizing returns. Asset Management does not consist of a single activity that takes place at a discrete moment in time. It takes place over the lifecycle of a property (from acquisition to disposition).
This is done through an efficient balance of landlord/tenant relations, budgeting, operating expense analysis and control, real estate tax and insurance reviews, capital improvements, energy management programs, lease analysis and market awareness and expertise. Broadly, Asset Management is focused on a portfolio of properties rather than a single property.
This is analogous to the role of managing events in any industry. REAM is the operation of commercial, industrial and/or residential real estate and akin to the role of management in any business. It ensures that the day-to-day property management functions are efficient and that the property is producing a good rate of return given its current use. Special attention is also given to landlord/tenant laws and legal subjects. Therefore, it is a necessity to have a thorough working knowledge of applicable municipal and state laws.
We at Alpha G:Corp undertake projects through real estate asset management (REAM), joint venture development as well as acquisitions. REAM also offers the much-needed structured approach in handling real estate assets considering all the factors that accompany investing in real estate. A lot of factors are considered when managing real estate assets including the location of the property, the soundness of the existing structures and the cost of maintaining the structure and even the lot appreciation or the structure depreciation. Aside from these, ideal real estate asset management considers property taxes that owners pay. REAM, besides managing real estate assets, is also a source of relevant information regarding real estate properties and the constantly monitored potential of these properties to earn higher returns in the future in consonance with government policies in real estate.
Our work culture is best portrayed through our mission statement – “Expect the Finest”. We are one of the fastest growing professional companies in the Indian real estate industry with projects spread across the country including Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Delhi NCR, Fatehabad, Gurgaon, Goa, Karnal, Jaipur, Meerut and other cities in Gujarat, Punjab and Rajasthan. These developments encompass an area of more than 30 million square feet.
Alpha International City Karnal
The Indian real estate sector plays a significant role in the country's economy as this sector is second only to agriculture in terms of employment generation and also contributes heavily towards the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The housing sector contributes almost 5% of the country's GDP.
Affordable Housing in India has become the new Mantra for everyone related to the realty sector in the country. From buyers to sellers and realtors to investors, everyone is pitching for affordable quality homes in India.
The new age real estate developer has envisioned a dream – a dream of housing every family in the country. ‘Affordable housing’ is a term that possesses the potential to transform this dream, also harboured by millions of households, into reality. In fact, the main reason for increase in absorption of new launched products is the drop in per sq. ft. rate and the reduction in the size of units, which brought their prices within the affordable range of many more buyers. Most of these units were launched at a price almost 40% lower than the average pricing of apartments that were available in the first quarter of 2008. The average unit size of these apartments was also lower by almost 35%. The cost effectiveness or affordability factor contributes to the ever-increasing attraction of suburban areas.
Huge segments of untapped space, especially in tier-2 and 3 cities and towns with large scope and potential for expansion will ensure a steady trend. The trend of expanding Megapolises will be stronger in 2010 and give far more flexibility in designing townships, commercial complexes and city centres.
These encouraging trends are indicative that the markets are poised for recovery if proactive measures are adopted by the real estate community to offer the right product at the right price to the consumers. There is a need to develop innovative ways to reduce construction costs without compromising on the quality of construction apart from harnessing new methods in the use of newer, energy efficient, environment friendly materials and innovative construction technologies that minimize skilled inputs and deliver faster results at affordable prices. Paving the way for such trimming in construction cost is the use of ‘pre-fabricated materials’, or ‘systems technology’. The use of these practices can bring down construction time by as much as 50%, reduce costs by 10%-15% and also avoid employment of a large and skilled work force. At the same time, these practices help in delivering a quality end product.
The government should consider tax sops, including cuts in duties and levies for the real estate sector in a bid to promote affordable housing in the country besides actively encouraging the adoption of appropriate technologies and suitable building materials to enable construction of safe, durable, comfortable and sustainable dwellings and commercial areas.
The recent slowdown in the economy resulted in buyers constituting more 'end-users' segment than investors and speculators. Since the new class of buyers are more aware of legal documentation, approvals and due diligence, we have seen the advent of professionalism and accountability in the industry. As a result, the real estate sector in India has at last become more professional and customer-centric.
In the coming years, Indian real estate sector will witness a high growth path again. This is due to the following factors:• Government initiatives and reforms for realty sector• Growing Indian economy• Growth of IT/ITES segments• Facilitation of foreign direct investments in real estate sector • Corrected market rate valuations• Growing urbanization. Rapid expansion in Tier-I, Tier-II and Tier-III cities and the emergence of Megapolises and of integrated townships projects as a consequence • Forthcoming SEZ projects and other industrial establishments• Drop in home loan interest rates• Increasing income levels of rapidly rising middle class + approximately 2 million graduates are produced every year in India, and that in turn creates a demand for real estate, especially in the affordable housing segment• Expansion of organized retail and growth of mall culture• Emergence of 'Green Buildings' concept
In particular, projected growth of the IT sector @ 14% per annum and the growth of urbanization @ 2-2.5% per annum are the 2 key factors that will generate additional demand. This is apart from the existing shortage of 24.7 million houses and related infrastructure in the country. Better infrastructure, enhanced job opportunities and an accountable and responsible real estate industry would bring sustainable growth to the business.
I am writing this post for all the people who have been sending us mails and calling up to enquire when the AlphaOne City Centre project will go live.
It gives us immense pleasure to inform you that amongst the brands that have already taken up space, Hypercity and Shoppers Stop are fully fitted out, while Fun Multiplex is on the verge of completion of its 5 screen multiplex. Amongst the retail vanilla brands, there is work going on at a fast pace in close to 40 stores with brands such as United Colours of Benetton, Arrow, Tommy Hilfiger, Biba, M & B, Lakshita, Good Things, Store 99, Puma, Magnet Shoes, Planet Fashion and Rockport, amongst others.
The sprawling and well-equipped food court is also getting ready to open shortly and will have a blend of international, Indian regional and of course, authentic Amritsari cuisine. The family entertainment centre will bring in a world class experience of indoor games and varietal entertainment to Amritsar. Last but not the least, the Amritsari Bazaar will ensure that the regional splendor of shopping is retained in an all new luxurious environment.
We, at Alpha G:Corp along with all our retailers and operators are eagerly looking forward to opening the doors of Punjab’s new shopping and lifestyle destination at AlphaOne, Amritsar very soon.
We believe that our business associates are ambassadors and spokespersons of our company’s values not only with buyers but also with the public at large. Along with the VABA program, we also orient our workforce to greater sensitivity towards addressing inequities in the basic needs of communities near our projects. Our continued growth depends on factors such as recognition and remuneration of talented co-workers and associates in a work culture that promotes teamwork and innovation.
Research points to a growing awareness within the real estate sector that the business is essentially people-driven and dependent on fair business practices and common goals. The academic and practitioner literatures emphasize the need for innovation to address the ever-challenging task of delivering projects beyond expectations consistently. Companies need people to turn new ideas into products as well as transform technology into usable, everyday tools. The complexity of customer needs, coupled with the speed that accompanies the emergence of new customer needs call for customized, transparent and prompt responses that are primarily people driven.
Brokers are identified as per special norms drawn up in this regard and some are subsequently selected for this program. They are trained as per our value systems and overall objectives and subsequently allotted the status of VABA. Kits to enhance their skills and perception are designed to optimally enhance the ‘win-win’ factor of this program. Crucially, VABA facilitates and enhances the process of building and strengthening the bridge between our delivery system and the aspirations of current and prospective buyers, inhabitants and investors.
For more information on the VABA program, you may write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or get in touch with us at :Alpha G:Corp Development Private LimitedWing A, Golf View Corporate TowerSector-42, Near DLF Golf CourseDLF - Phase-5Gurgaon - 122002Phone: +91-124-4831111Fax: +91-124-4831100
The rising cost of residential accommodation has led to the popularity of Home Loans in India. Home loan is the finance borrowed from a bank or financial institution to buy or modify a residential real estate property. Any Resident or Non-resident individual who is planning to buy a house in India can apply for a Home loan. If you have decided to buy a property in the near future you can even apply for a loan before you select your property. It becomes easier if the property you are planning to buy is in a condominium or township that is pre-approved by a bank or financial institution.
The recent downturn in the economy resulted in buyers constituting the 'end-users' segment rather than investors and speculators. Since the new class of buyers is a relatively younger set of customers, more aware of legal documentation, approvals and due diligence, we have seen the much-needed professionalism and accountability become more prevalent in the industry.
Today, the amount of money that a city dweller spends on rent is roughly the same, or only slightly less than the amount he pays as the EMI (Equated Monthly Installments) on a housing loan. Home loans are made available by financial institutions to both Indian and NRI applicants at floating or fixed rate of interest and also at attractive EMI options: • For construction or buying a new home • For purchase of plots for construction of house• For home repairs and renovations or extension of an existing house or flat• Against mortgage of property • Purchase of home consumer durables and furnishings as included in the project cost
The buyers should try to take loan from established banks and financial institutions that screen the entire project before approving a loan for an apartment or plot in that project. In the course of approving a project, these institutions ensure that the developer has all the requisite approvals and sanctions. The government has recently announced interest rate subsidy of 1% for housing loans up to Rs. 10 lakhs and earmarked Rs. 1,000 crores for the scheme. The subsidy of 1% will be available for the first 12 EMIs on loans up to Rs. 10 lakhs for houses costing less than Rs. 20 lakhs.
For those planning to take a loan to buy a house, there is good news. The prevailing home loan rates from nationalized banks and housing finance companies are fairly reasonable:
• State Bank of India (SBI): 8% – 8.5% for Rs. 30-50 lakhs loan for 20 years (8% fixed for 1st year and 8.5% fixed for the next two years)• Punjab National Bank (PNB): 8.5% for Rs. 30 lakhs and 9.25% for Rs. 30-50 lakhs loan for 20 years (fixed for three years)• Life Insurance Corporation (LIC): 8.75% for Rs. 30-50 lakhs loan for 20 years (floating home loan rates)• HDFC: 9% for Rs. 30-50 lakhs loan for 20 years (floating home loan rates)• ICICI: 9.25% for Rs. 30-50 lakhs loan for 20 years (floating home loan rates)• Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Limited (DHFL): 9.25% for Rs. 30-50 lakhs loan for 20 years (floating home loan rates)
Further, various banks and finance companies are coming up with schemes ahead of Diwali. Deals include low, adjustable introductory rates for initial years, with some lenders giving the option to shift to either fixed or floating rates in subsequent years. Lenders like Canara Bank, Bank of Maharashtra and Dena Bank are offering fixed-rate loans for the first 5 years, and subsequently, linking the loans to their prime lending rates. While others like Bank of India are offering fixed-rate loans for the first 2 years. India’s largest bank SBI is offering fixed rates for the first 3 years. Development Bank of Credit introduced a fixed rate of 7.95% for the first year, the lowest, at least, for the first year.
Moreover, in order to attract investors, Housing Finance Companies are offering incentives like: • Free accident insurance & property insurance • Waiving of pre-payment penalty & processing fee
My advice to all prospective home buyers: Be diligent, be bold and fulfill your dream as it is a buyers’ market at present. Just one word of caution; check the credentials and track record of the Developer you are buying from.
Another big draw for our 3 townships in Haryana are the eco-friendly practices adopted by us in these townships namely, Alpha International City in Karnal, Fatehabad and Kurukshetra. These practices would optimise the performance of each township, while preserving and protecting important resources like water, land and energy. This is accomplished through an integrated approach to architecture, blending design issues, energy-efficient materials, construction techniques, effective building systems and taking advantage of renewable energy supplies. Eco-friendly practices are a must for every phase of the construction project, from the planning stages to completion.
The concept of living in integrated township seems to have caught on in a big way. The people in Tier II and III cities and towns aspire to have a world-class lifestyle with accompanying comforts. Our 3 integrated townships, Alpha International City (AIC), in Karnal, Fatehabad and Kurukshetra are world-class development projects, and among the first such developments by any real estate developer in the country in a Tier-II or III city or town. These 3 integrated townships are planned towards providing a metropolitan environment to buyers and are backed by infrastructure that goes well beyond the minimum requirements prescribed by local bylaws. We have laid down infrastructure aimed at ensuring that the facilities are fully compliant with plans at the time of possession. Designed to integrate all the comforts, amenities and infrastructure prerequisites of an international urban lifestyle, these townships offer the ideal environment for modern homes with all the joys of living. Everything that the residents may require will be close at hand, sometimes within walking distance.
The outstanding feature of each of the 3 Alpha International Cities is their respective locations. Each township is located amidst verdant surroundings with abundant tree cover and ground water, thereby providing the ideal environment for healthy and pollution-free living. Safety and security to the inhabitants along with provision of high quality, world-class education and healthcare facilities are top priorities in each Alpha International City, besides designated police and fire stations. The healthy and secure social infrastructure will provide a unique way of life to the inhabitants, including facilities that encourage sports, besides safe play areas for children. To top it, the ‘Alpha Life Club’ will be the hub of activity in each township besides facilitating and sustaining the spirit of bonhomie and mutual cooperation among residents.
We have a proven track record of ensuring high levels of customer satisfaction through a dedicated Customer Relationship Management Team. Alpha G:Corp believes in building relationships that are long term; for this we implement our business strategy in a way that the company partners with the customers through the lifetime of the projects and beyond by offering services like maintenance and facility management to manage and service all our developments after hand-over to the buyers or tenants.The objective of CRM at Alpha G:Corp is:•To reaffirm the company’s value system which takes pride in being an organization that is market driven and customer centric•To ensure 100% customer satisfaction and delight•To ensure that all customer communication has been responded in timely and proactive manner•We use E-mode to update clients who live away from the area of their investment about the development or construction undertaken at the site of their investment.•We assist NRI clients in procuring information related to bank transfers, Power of Attorneys and handover procedure for possession by their local representatives. For instance, in our eco-friendly premium residential project GurgaonOne in Gurgaon, 30% of the investors were either Non-Resident Indians or people residing out of Delhi NCR region. To ensure that the timely information was provided to them, regular e-mails and written communications were sent to update them about the development undertaken or in answer to their queries and concern areas.The measures undertaken to keep the clients updated on activities undertaken at various project sites are: •Quarterly newsletters to all clients. An e-newsletter is also uploaded on the website for clients’ easy reference. •Regular development updates depicting the development undertaken at the site.•Sending e-mail communications for faster reach of updates to clients.•Dedicated CRM team at all sites to address any and every query of clients. •Monthly development updates with visuals from all sites under development are uploaded on monthly basis on the website. •Organizing periodical site visits in groups or individually to view the development work at sites. We have now more informal channels of communication with our customers and constituents by way of this interactive blog. We hope that our clients and the public at large would benefit from this. Our endeavor is to be proactive to take the clients and stake holders with us on the journey of an ever-growing relationship which will yield us 100% satisfied customers. Alpha G:Corp is committed to achieve this through constant effort, perseverance and open and clear communication.
This blog is our endeavour to connect with all of you who have experienced Alpha G:Corp and all others who would like to. For us, â€˜Alpha Connectâ€™ is a platform to share our beliefs, values, experiences and perspectives on everything that touches the Indian Real Estate Industryâ€™s existing and potential customers and stakeholders.
We invite you to join in and help us build meaningful and constructive discussions on this forum. Looking forward to your active participationâ€¦