Construction delays could hit 4.22 lakh new homes set for launch by end-2021

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"The tally of 4.22 lakh homes scheduled for delivery across the top 7 cities by 2021-end must be viewed in the context of a severe second wave of COVID-19 infections," said Anuj Puri, Chairman, Anarock Property Consultants.

Construction delays could hit 4.22 lakh new homes set for launch by end-2021

A total of 4.22 lakh new homes are scheduled for completion by the end of this year, according to Anarock Property Consultants. However not all these units may be ready for delivery thanks to possible construction delays, the research firm says.

"The tally of 4.22 lakh homes scheduled for delivery across the top 7 cities by 2021-end must be viewed in the context of a severe second wave of COVID-19 infections," said Anuj Puri, Chairman, Anarock Property Consultants, "All the top cities have been affected, and it is likely that a part of these project deliveries will be pushed to 2022."

Over a quarter of these units — 28 percent — are under construction in NCR, while MMR accounts for 26 percent of these homes. According to Anarock data, nearly 1.69 lakh of 4.22 lakh under-construction homes are in the affordable segment, while the mid-segment (Rs 40 lakh to 80 lakh) accounts for 1.48 lakh homes.

Also read: Four years of RERA in India: The journey so far and the road ahead

While nearly 72 percent of the total supply of 4.22 lakh has already been sold to buyers, the industry believes that selling the remainder will not be an easy task. "Amid the ongoing second wave of COVID-19 and the curbs due to lockdown in various states, the sector is facing a gradual slowdown, which has made it extremely difficult to sustain the momentum,” said NAREDCO Maharashtra President, Ashok Mohanani.

"We are seeing a temporary slowdown (in housing sales) due to the rampant spread of the coronavirus," Puri added, "The market will quickly regain an even keel once the vaccination drive picks up the pace and the health infrastructure crunch abates."

While the nationwide lockdown last year saw construction activity come to a halt for several weeks, localised lockdowns this year have seen on-site construction carry on, albeit with strict COVID-19 restrictions and social distancing. The resulting impact could be a slowdown in construction, which in turn could push deliveries from late 2021 to 2022.

Also read: COVID-19 second wave dampens future real estate sentiment index

Neither developers nor research firms have projected what percentage of existing under-construction projects could be delayed, or what the window of delay could possibly be.

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