Mr. Rohit Raj Modi, President- CREDAI NCR
“We are very optimistic about the upcoming budget and pinning our hopes on the new Finance Minster. This time the industry is eagerly awaiting the industry status which will ensure that policy dispensation available for infrastructure projects also extends to the realty sector. The industry has been demanding the infrastructure status for Affordable Housing Projects including extension of benefits under Section 80-IA of Income Tax Act for a long time. Key benefits will include ability of insurance company and other long term loans providers to lend to Affordable Housing Project, automatic approval route for ECB and income tax benefits available through 80-IA and 80-IB of Income Tax Act. The Budget 2014 had announced that REITs as well as Infrastructure Investment Trusts would be allowed “Tax Pass Throughs”. However, in practice these have not come true and the following need to be implemented, if REITs are to become a reality. Clarity on issues related to MAT (Minimum Alternate Tax); DDT (Dividend Distribution Tax) and waiver from Stamp Duty should be announces by the government for the success of REITs and InvITs.
Interest Rate Subvention to home buyers and Priority Sector status to construction Loan for Affordable Housing Project should be introduced to reduce cost of home ownership. Reduction in interest rates for home buyers in affordable segment through interest subvention should be given to lift the buyer sentiments. Such reduction in rate of interest for home buyers in the affordable segment can be achieved by interest subvention on the one hand and by granting priority sector status to the construction loan for affordable housing. Government should raise the tax deduction on home loan limit from Rs. 02 lacs to 05 lacs and the time period should also be increased from 03 years to 05 years. Govt should also come up with clarity on GST regarding housing sector. As real estate is one of the vital contributors to economy’s GDP, Government of India should shift its focus towards this sector and do all the needful to make this sector grow with a CAGR of 20-25% in next 5 years.”
Mr. Pradeep Jain, Chairman- Parsvnath Developers Ltd.
“We are very optimistic about the upcoming budget and pinning our hopes on the new Finance Minster. The industry is eagerly expecting speedy single window clearance with pre-defined timelines for speedy approvals and bringing transparency into the sector. Infrastructure status to our industry will ensure that policy dispensation available for infrastructure projects also extends to the realty sector. Relaxation of multiple taxes and reduction in interest rates for home buyers in affordable segment through interest subvention should be given to lift the buyer sentiments. The govt should also look into standardization of construction material prices to regulate property prices. Moreover, tax clarity on REITs and InvITs should be made by the government to set up the tempo in the industry and thus ease investment options. It is right time that the sector is given an impetus in the form of policy reforms to help improve the economic scenario of the country.”
Mr Aman Agarwal, Director, KV Developers
“Real estate industry is most optimistic towards upcoming budget. As an industry Real estate is a large contributor to the GDP and also supports almost 250 subordinating sectors like, ceramics, fittings and fixtures, electric and electrical equipments, cement, labour etc. Always having this huge potential, if given a little fillip, real estate would play an important role in propelling GDP and would help it reach magic figure of 9% in next two-three years. Though most of the policy frameworks in real estate sector come under state government’s purview, there are still many fiscal and monetary stimuli the Union Government can award to this sector to give a boost. First is bringing real estate into infrastructure ambit. This will ensure application of infrastructure policies to this sector as well and will directly benefit the sector in terms of availability of funds. Secondly, government should extend home loan principal repayment exemption limit upto Rs 5 Lakh from taxable income under Section 80C/80CCC/80CCD. This is an immediate requirement which will benefit home buyers’ pockets and in turn will boost sales. We expect that this time finance minister will revise the various taxation policy framework for common man and industry as well. The budget should also do away with the multiple taxes involved in the purchase of residential property. As of now, home purchasers are required to pay service tax and value-added tax (VAT) on top of stamp duty and registration charges. Goods and Service Tax (GST) should be introduced in place of these taxes.”