Indian millenials step overseas to buy first home

Indian millenials step overseas to buy first home

NEW DELHI: Driven by the urge to splurge on quality real estate, Indian millenials are taking the bold step of looking overseas.

Several young first-time home buyers, which also includes top executives flush with cash from the startup boom in the country, are exploring options in locations such as, London, Dubai, Hong Kong and Singapore, according property consultants.

“The number of young people, who want to invest in apartments abroad is on the rise,” said Amit Goyal, CEO at India Sotheby’s International Realty, a part of Sotheby’s global realty network, which did business worth around $108 billion in real estate last fiscal. “We are also in talks with executives from the startup industry, who want to buy apartments in locations such as Hong Kong and Singapore because many of these new-age businesses are registered in these places.”

Sotheby’s recently roped in audit and tax consulting firm consulting firm PwC to advise its Indian clients on the intricacies of buying property abroad.

Recently, Paytm’s Vijay Shekhar Sharma picked up a house in the Capital’s Golf Links area for Rs 82 crore and Flipkart’s co-founder Binny Bansal acquired a 10,000 square-feet property in Koramangala in Bengaluru for around Rs Rs 32 crore. “Registering your business in a place like Singapore is a good option in case a future listing needs to be explored overseas,” said Albinder Dhindsa, co-founder of Grofers, which is registered in Singapore. Other startups that are registered in Singapore, includes Flipkart and Droom.

However, when it comes to buying apartments abroad, property consultants said, the sweet spot is two to three bedrooms. While chairman of Anarock Property Consultants, Anuj Puri said a two-bedroom apartment in neighbourhoods such as Manchester or Birmingham in the UK would set one back by around Rs 5-6 crore, Goyal said several properties in Singapore and Hong Kong that cost between Rs 20-30 crore are also in contention.

“Even Dubai is a good destination for Indians looking to buy a flat abroad,” said Puri. “The return on these apartments is higher when compared with India at around 7%,” he said.

The consultants said lower mortgage rates in overseas locations mean rental yields are higher than what one would be able to get from investing in a property in India. For instance, while the average ticket size of premium properties in India is around $1.6 million, in the US, it’s around $8,90,000 for a premium real estate brokerage firm such as Sotheby’s.

Head of research and REIS at JLL India, Ashutosh Limaye said the trend of purchasing property in locations outside of India is not new. “Most buyers of second homes in global locations also use it for purpose of holidays,” he said. “Some people also buy second homes in countries outside of India is also when part of the family like children stay in a different country for education or work. This trend will remain parallel to investment / buying pattern of homes in the domestic market.”

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