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Keep these in mind while buying a house post wedding written by Promita Mukherjee, published in Femina. November 11, 2017

Once the wedding and the honeymoon are over, responsibilities start sinking in. There are myriad things to think of while starting a life together. Key among them would be a house to live in. But setting up a house right after the wedding might seem like a daunting task. Then again, nothing can be more exciting than owning and setting up your own house.

 

A thousand questions would flood your mind. Would you rather rent? Or how about staying with parents? If you are moving cities post marriage and might have a job that will take you places, literally, should you invest in a home?

 

Price pointers

Experts say that it&rsquos always a good decision to buy rather than rent a house. After all, a house is an asset that does not come with a depreciating value. Real estate will always give you good returns. &lsquo&lsquoThe concept of &lsquostarter homes&rsquo is apt for India&mdashthis pertains to homes bought at the very outset of one&rsquos career and/or married life. They are generally only as big as they need to be, but are in well-connected locations,&rsquo&rsquo says Ashwinder Raj Singh, CEO-Residential Services, JLL India.

 

The idea is to buy a smaller home within your existing means. You can always upgrade to a larger home later. Go for a project that has good amenities, and is in a well-connected location. This will help you sell it at a better price and faster when the time to upgrade comes. &lsquo&lsquoPurchasing your first home is unlike the regular white good purchase. It has to be a well thought out decision, based on financial stability, family size, proximity to place of work, amenities like swimming pool, gym, garden, etc,&rsquo&rsquo says Vinod Rohira, managing director, K Raheja Corp.

 

Talk time

Before you decide to invest, sit down with your partner and chalk out your finances, financial stability, expenses or any other long and short-term plans. Balance your current and future finances with your current needs. Figure out how much you can invest. If you feel you are in a position to invest a chunk of money as down payment for your home without rocking the financial boat, you should go ahead and do it. Remember, a joint account amplifies your collective buying power.

 

&lsquo&lsquoWhen both partners are working, it is imperative to chalk out how the expenses will be split, a suitable EMI based on both their salaries, the tenure of the loan and how long each partner will work,&rsquo&rsquo points out CS Verma, general manager, Credit Priority, Bank of Maharashtra.

 

&lsquo&lsquoThe EMI should ideally not be more than 35 to 40 per cent of one&rsquos monthly salary. One should also keep in mind not to spend more than 50 per cent of the total income on EMIs,&rsquo&rsquo says Rohira.

 

Tick them off

Always remember the golden rule for investment in property: It&rsquos all about the location. See if the area is poised for growth. Is there a new metro / expressway / train route/airport coming up near you? If the answer to any of these is yes, rest assured that the returns will only escalate.

 

You should also take a complete estimation of additional expenses. These include pre-EMI charges, additional costs of interiors, maintenance charges, taxes, stamp duty, registration charges, legal costs, etc.

 

Check the credibility of the real estate developer. Read up online to see if there are any deadline defaults or negative reports about quality of construction. A reputed developer will give you a good-quality house within the stipulated deadline. You also need to check if the project has all the approvals and paperwork in place. &lsquo&lsquoWhen we were buying a home right after our wedding, we had to double check with the real estate developer about paperwork. We had initially chosen a project which both of us loved, but it didn&rsquot have all the necessary sanctions in place. So we had to choose another in the same locality,&rsquo&rsquo says Divya Nathan, an investment banker who bought an apartment in a Greater Noida complex. &lsquo&lsquoWe had heard about people being asked to pay for additional expenses. But we sit down with the property agents and they gave us the entire break-up, ensuring that there were no hidden costs,&rsquo&rsquo says Rachita Sharma, an analyst who recently bought a property in Navi Mumbai along with her husband. Keep all these in mind before zeroing in on a house.