Second Homes Or Holiday Homes Will Gain Traction In the Near Future Renewed interest is likely in properties at hill stations/beach front properties or vacation homes in countryside

By Ram Raheja

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COVID-19 has disrupted the way we live, work and even holiday. Given the fears of pandemic, long-distance travel has become unfavorable and unadvisable. In search of fresh air, green surroundings and less populated areas people are looking to move at places which offer them convenience and lifestyle, away from the hustle of city life yet closer to home and in more serene and tranquil locations.

Perfect getaway for families

It's a sense of déjà vu, as we almost see a recap to the lockdown from last year. After being confined at home and many corporates adapting to the work-from-home concept, "work from anywhere' is the new norm. Luckily this year with the second wave of the pandemic, people are choosing to handle the situation differently on their terms before normalcy returns by way of 'workations' since it does not really matter where one person operates from. As we learn to co-exist with COVID, people are opting to move out from the bustling city life to exotic locations for a well-deserved break which provides both comfort as well as safety. Spacious built to suit second homes with customized fitness and in house wellness facilities are options in the priority list for a re-booted lifestyle.

Great investment avenue for vacation rentals

Real estate is a safe haven investment in times of crisis and second homes are a great investment avenue for vacation rentals. With low home loan interests and reduced stamp duty and registration rates in some states it is an appropriate time for people to consider investing in a second home. In fact, prices will eventually get stronger, as the supply of quality projects is limited and demand is very high. Areas that offer significant scope of growth and would attract home buyers looking to buy a weekend home would be Lonavala, Mahableshwar, Alibaug (Mumbai, Pune) Mokila, Chevella (Hyderabad), Nandi Hills, Hosur, Anekal (Bengaluru) Pulicat, Pondicherry, Mahabalipuram (Chennai). In fact, we at S Raheja Realty have seen an inclined demand and sales for our weekend home offerings.

Stands to give good returns in a long-term period

Apart from rental income and other tax benefits, second homes are considered great investment options for future milestones like retirement or any other unannounced emergencies. They are quality investment and the demand for the same is driven owing to rising standard of living and long-term capital appreciation. Buying a home and placing money into properties is regaining its old charm of being a tried-and-tested way to grow one's investment continuously. The HNI buyers want to live in a house that announces their arrival and offers a higher lifestyle with a super-luxurious home set up than just a postal address. Vacation properties are mostly located in popular areas and hence are more likely to retain their value and appreciate.

Safe space to escape from city life

While short breaks from the chaotic city life, rental income, or eventual retirement have always been things to aspire for; the COVID 19 outbreak has left a deeper impression and the urgent motivation towards the safety and security of family and loved ones. The hope of owning a second home away from the crowded cities is very much part of the overall choices of buyers. Ever since the pandemic, people have been locked in their homes; this leads to a rise in understanding the importance of having a second home to go to. The post-pandemic era has reiterated how a holiday house is a tangible asset and a safe space in times of global crisis like this where they can experience a cool, open-air lifestyle in a home away from home.

Renewed interest is likely in properties at hill stations/beach front properties or vacation homes in countryside. Local holiday places that are easily accessible and require shorter period of travel will become more popular in the "new normal'. Hence, the second home market is set for transformation due to the impact of COVID-19.

Ram Raheja

Director, S Raheja Realty

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