Developers in the UK are wooing Indian property buyers by offering to facilitate loans as well as guaranteeing rentals, which can be used to pay back the loans. All the buyer has to do is make a down payment of Rs. 20 lakh in two equal installments. It’s the red-hot Indian economy that is attracting the developers. Seamus Nugent, managing director of Dandara developers, told: “There is high disposable income in the hands of the middle-class now. We already have investors from West Asia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Europe, Russia and South Africa.”
With the Reserve Bank of India allowing individuals to invest up to Rs. 80 lakh a year abroad, the dream of owning property in foreign countries is coming true. Experts believe that UK is a safe bet, despite the fact that it is presently going through a housing slump. Property prices have averaged 11.5 per cent growth over the last 50 years. “UK is a safe long-term bet as limited property supply has ensured prices don’t crash,” said Jaydev Modi, chairman of Arrow Webtex, a real estate firm.
Firms like Baron Group International guide buyers through the investment process. “The investor has to just pay Rs. 10 lakh up front and another Rs. 10 lakh on completion of the project. Once he or she gets possession and the loan installments need to be paid, we provide rental guarantees that take care of the loan,” said Nayan Bavishi, managing director of Baron.
Mona Jalota, Baron’s India representative, said they have already been approached by one UK developer looking for Indian investors. “Many others will follow,” she said. “We got 33 inquiries on the first day, most of them from diamond traders and businessmen. Upper middle-class families that have children studying in the UK are also interested in having a house there by the time the children graduate,” said Jalota.
A city businessman, who asked not to be identified, was among those interested in investing. “My son is studying in London and I want to buy a house by the time he gets out of college,” he said.