Budget 2019 has come as a mixed bag for the real estate sector at a time when the industry is showing signs of revival. The government introduced schemes such as ‘Bharatmala’, ‘Sagarmala’ and UDAN have helped in improving the country’s infrastructure. Additionally, the availability of land belonging to CPSEs and central ministries to public infrastructure and affordable housing is expected to provide the much-needed impetus to the housing demand.
The allowance of FIIs and FPIs to subscribe to REITs and INVITs would lead to an influx of investment in the cash strapped sector. The government’s assurance to provide one-time credit guarantee for the first loss up to 10% for purchase of high rates pooled assets of financially sound NBFCs will further help the cause.
The expected reforms in the rental laws along with the finalization of the model tenancy law looks promising. In the affordable housing segment, the tax deductions of Rs. 3.5 lakh on loans borrowed up to 31st March 2020 for homes valued up to Rs. 45 lakh takes the government’s Housing for All by 2022 initiative one notch ahead.
The fully automated GST refund module, which is likely to come soon, along with interchangeability of PAN and Aadhar provides much-needed flexibility to the real estate community.
We believe the liquidity concerns of the developers could have been addressed with the reintroduction of Input Tax Credit for under construction properties. However, this year’s budget highlights the government’s intention to further strengthen the economy.