India real estate: Why it’s the perfect time to invest in real estate in India as an NRI

The last few years have not been kind to the Indian Rupee. Factors as wide-ranging as the COVID-19 outbreak, an uncertain global geopolitical landscape, and a worldwide increasing interest rates and high inflation have led to a dramatic fall in the currency’s valuation against the US dollar, with the exchange rate falling from INR 68,374 in July 2019 to INR 80.03 on July 18, 2022.

But, as the adage goes, there is an opportunity in every crisis – and NRI investors have been quick to spot one in India’s real estate sector. According to data, between January and June 2022, search traffic from NRI customers looking to purchase a property in India increased by 117.7% over the corresponding period in 2020.

Think you check all the immigration boxes? find out

These investors are capitalizing on a unique set of circumstances – one that you, as an NRI, should also be looking to take advantage of.

Prima facie, the fall of the Rupee feels like motivation enough for NRI investors. Real estate purchase has always been a popular avenue for NRI investors. With the currency’s depreciation offering more value for their capital, they are flexing this increased spending power with property investments.

But this alone does not explain all the factors behind this surge of investor interest.

« Back to recommendation stories

Reasons behind the Rupee’s depreciation such as high global interest rates and inflation have also destabilized other investment options such as stocks, commodities, and gold. The global financial markets are still recovering from the bear runs between March and June 2022, and there have been enough warnings of future bear rallies before the markets turn a corner. Investments in commodities have also been risky due to market turbulence, and there are signs that global gold prices may drop by the end of this year.

ET Online

On the other hand, real estate in India has grown robustly, despite witnessing several relatively lean years within the past decade. As per industry indices, property prices in the country increased by about 70% in absolute terms in the five-year period between June 2012 and June 2017. After the blip caused by the pandemic, a recent Reuters poll projects this momentum to continue for the coming few years with prices of residential units expected to increase by 7.5% in 2022, and by around 6% in 2023 and 2024.

As an investor, these numbers should excite you because adding a property in India to your portfolio gets you a tangible asset that is safer, appreciates in value over time, and recoups a portion of your original investment via monthly rent payments. Little wonder, then, that investors from countries with healthy migrant Indian populations such as the United Arab Emirates, Singapore, Australia, the UK, France, and Saudi Arabia are driving queries about purchasing real estate in India.

Leveraging technology: How to identify the right property for your needs, and where to look If the data above has piqued your interest in a real estate investment in India, you may want to join your fellow NRI investors in using cutting-edge proptech platforms to streamline the entire journey, from discovery and research to final sale and documentation. Operating at the intersection of tech, digitization, and human expertise, these platforms can help you research the most relevant projects across multiple cities to find the property that best meets your specific objectives.

Key information such as regional pricing trends, current project status, developer history, RERA certification status, etc. is mapped to inform your decision-making, while dedicated experts can also be hired to reduce the hassle, time, and risk associated with researching and purchasing a property. Doing so also eliminates the involvement of multiple parties traditionally entrenched in such deals, such as local relatives, brokers, and acquaintances, to further simplify the process.

Logically, the next question is about the best market to buy a property in, as an NRI – and what kind of property to purchase. At present, NRI investors are most keen on prominent business hubs such as Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi-NCR, and Hyderabad, as the return to physical workspaces represents an opportunity to secure immediate returns via monthly rental incomes. NRI buyers are also looking at buying larger properties, favoring pricier 3BHK and 4BHK units over more affordable options. This shift is in line with the growing demand for more spacious living spaces in India, where urban residents are more willing to pay a higher premium for greater comfort.

However, if you prefer a slightly longer-term value appreciation over immediate returns, you might also consider exploring projects and properties in tier-2 markets such as Nagpur, Pune, Ahmedabad, Kochi, and Jaipur. Poised to emerge as the next top urban destinations in India, these markets have properties that are more affordable than those situated in tier-1 cities and are poised to offer better value for money over the next 5 to 10 years.

For an NRI, buying a property in India has never been easier – or more fruitful. With other investment options currently experiencing significant turbulence, the Indian Rupee’s depreciation has unlocked a unique, unexpected opportunity to maximize wealth in both the short and long run with few risks. As a smart investor, it is an opportunity for you that you should not miss out on.

NRI QR labelET Online

If you plan to buy a house, here’s a 7-point checklist

Property prices have risen steadily in the past year, and home loan rates have increased following the recent repo rate hikes this year. But although this has impacted affordability, analysts say the pent-up demand will push home prices further in the coming months. So if you plan to buy a house, we have developed a seven-point checklist. Go through it before you make the big ticket investment.