By Niranjan Hiranandani
Empowering women in India moves along twin tracks – first, the accepted norms and second, the new age opportunities that women are creating in an evolutionary stage for India.
Among the aspects that define empowerment, shelter, or housing is among the most important. Having one’s own home, preferably one that is owned is arguably, among the most important decisions of our lives – and this holds true for all Indians, regardless of gender. Over the years, it was the male who was considered responsible when it came to buying a home; the present day, women are not just fast catching up, they have also broken the stereotypes – from being ‘influencers’, they are now homebuyers in their own right.
The predominantly male home buying industry has transformed into women-centric scenario. Today the well -educated independent and strong women want to create their own wealth asset and widen their investment horizon. Today, women have endeavored in attaining higher education to fat pay cheques a much more beyond their traditional stigma.
As the adage goes, the lady of the house would make a house into a home – and this traditional thought has been an important aspect of Indian families selecting their dream home and buying it.
In recent times, we have seen women taking on different roles when it comes to homes – from the student looking for student housing options to the working woman looking for a home; the single mother looking for something that balances the child’s upbringing tasks and her workplace. With their changing roles the growth trajectory for women has been much more pronounced. Reflecting reality in metropolitan cities so far, the trend of women being the second biggest group of home buyers is also catching up in many tier II cities. A synopsis of different reports suggests that a little over 30 percent of those who rent or buy a home across the country are women. Another estimate suggests that women contribute to decision-making in about 74 percent of residential real-estate purchases.
Most of the women home buyers look out to buy property for self- use. This trend could be attributed to the special benefits provided to women home buyers. Women home buyers are incentivised with several customized schemes and offers by govt, banks & institution, developers and channel partners. The benefit of credit subsidy for first time female home buyers under PMAY scheme has given major thrust to this emerging home buyer segment. Developers also announce lucrative discounts and offers to generate interest among the females and garner the sales. Many banks and home financing institution also come up with alternative schemes to benefit the women home buyers with flexi-payment scheme to comfort their home buying experience. Similarly, women home buyers get tax benefits, are eligible for a tax deduction subject to a limit in case of self-occupied property, as also they are also eligible along with their spouse for income tax deductions in instances of co-owned property.
On the occasion of Women’s Day, I would appeal all the new-age millennial women home buyers to step out and buy their dream home. It is the right time to secure your bright future and ensure one’s financial stability.
(The author is Co-Founder and Managing Director of Hiranandani Group, engaged in real estate business)