Mumbai top property choice for Indian expats based in UAE
Mumbai has been revealed as the favourite spot for Indian expats in the UAE to buy property, despite the city's soaring home prices, according to a new survey.
Thirty one per cent of Indians in the UAE said that Mumbai was their preferred destination for property investment in India, the results of the Indian Property Show survey released yesterday revealed. About 14,000 Indian expats in the UAE participated in the survey.
"Despite being the 'highly unaffordable' place, even for the upper middle income group back home, Mumbai has become a top choice for non-resident Indians [NRIs] in the UAE for investment in the real estate sector," said Sunil Jaiswal, the chief executive of Sumansa Exhibitions, which organises the Indian Property Show, to be held in Dubai this month. Home prices in Mumbai have increased by 66 per cent over the past four years, according to a recent report by Jones Lang LaSalle.
The second most popular city among UAE expats was Bangalore, best known for its IT industry, with 22.63 per cent saying they would prefer to invest there during the next three to six months, up 5 per cent compared with the Indian Property Show's findings last year.
Chennai was in third place with 17.92 per cent, while Pune was in fourth place with 15.35 per cent. New Delhi, however, slipped to fifth place from third, with 10.23 per cent stating that it was their preferred city to buy property.
"Our survey actually points out that Mumbai is looked [to] for quick capital appreciation, whereas Bangalore is more for ownership and better lifestyle," said Mr Jaiswal, who added that he expected price appreciation in Mumbai to be in the range of 125 to 133 per cent between this year and 2017.
The weak Indian rupee has helped to boost property investment in India, with the soft currency effectively making prices cheaper for those buying homes in India in UAE dirhams.
There was a half-and-half divide between Indian expats who wanted to purchase property for their own use and those who were looking to buy as an investment, the survey found. Apartments proved much more popular options than villas or land, with 78 per cent opting for apartments.
Navi Mumbai, Kochi, Gurgaon, Hyderabad and Coimbatore were named as other hot destinations for buyers.
There have been widespread expectations of a correction in the Mumbai's sky-high rates in recent years, but with available land being scarce in the overpopulated city, that has not materialised.
"In the Indian city which has for years carried the unwholesome reputation of being the most overpriced in terms of residential real estate valuations, there is no relief in sight for aspiring home buyers," said Ramesh Nair, a managing director at Jones Lang LaSalle in India.
Updated: June 3, 2013 04:00 AM