In this statistics focused world that we now live in is there room for a story? A story in which what sold or what didn’t during a particular quarter will not influence what will sell or what will not sell in the year ahead? Statistics can be pretty comforting, they help in anchoring predictions giving just enough leeway for a sway or bobbing movement. They help analytics, and also in predicting trends, pretty much ensuring those trends are followed.
And so, predictions get easily predictable. Every quarter, every year gets repeated in episodic fashion. Like TV serials.
But what happens when a storm uproots the anchor?
Things get uncertain. The safe episodic predictability gives way to a stand alone story. Like a movie that’s just out in the theatres. And I’m sure you’ll agree it’s ten times more thrilling to watch a movie rather than a TV serial.
So will real estate really produce a story in 2017 ? A story that’s new and refreshing, uncertain and exciting?
2016 was fairly predictable. It followed 2015. And 2015 followed 2014. Oh, these episodes!
I don’t think there’s a need to summarise what happened. We’ve all watched what happened.
2016 was plodding along as expected until a storm hit us on the evening of Tuesday, November 8th forcing the real estate serial to go off air. Most viewers got busy with their individual financial stories. Individually different, but thematically common.
Seven weeks later it’s obvious that real estate has taken a sabbatical. So, how soon will it return in 2017, and what story will it bring along?
As I wrote above, the safe episodic predictability will give way to a stand alone story. And yes, it’s going to refreshing and new, uncertain and exciting. But mostly different.
All serials and movies have writers. So, who’s going to be writing this new, refreshing, uncertain, exciting and different story? No one from Bollywood, I’m sure.
It’s going to us. It’s going to everyone who’s had some contact with real estate. An investor, a buyer, a seller, a developer, a real estate brokerage company, the neighbourhood real estate agent, a one time end-user, a multiple property owner, a commercial space lessee, a land owner and that one big entity who’s finally making an effort to reform this sector. The Government of India.
Too many writers? Not really. Even if they have different ideas on how this real estate story unfolds, they’re probably unanimous on how it should move forward. Now, what are those different ideas?
Most investors had surpluses of money when demonetization happened. Unsure of investing in a sluggish market they preferred to wait and watch. It’s taken them seven weeks to put things back in order. Post January 1st, 2017 they’ll be watching out for opportunities and when they spot one they won’t wait to invest. Compulsive investing? Maybe so, but what we need to look out for is how these investments will be transacted. I’m sure cash won’t have much of a role in the 2017 real estate story.
What do most real estate brokerage companies and agents want? The same as property owners and property seekers. Easy to execute deals, and timely deliveries. And also to keep interest sustained, a reasonable ROI. By now developers have learnt their lessons. New launches have been sensibly postponed and the imminent arrival of a RERA complaint sector has spurred them into speeding up deliveries.
Stories are made up of plot points. I’ve mentioned a few above. Maybe you’ll discover a few more.
Everyone loves a good growth story. There’s optimism that 2017 will finally see the beginning of the revival of growth in India’s real estate sector. It’s difficult to predict how much of a growth will there actually be. The 2017 real estate story won’t be a blockbuster, but even if it is moderately succesful it’ll bring a lot of cheer to its writers.