Not worried about Real Estate slump, will ride out storm: Dandara

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Mumbai, Nov 9 (UNI) Even as the real estate industry in the country is reeling under the impact of the global economic slowdown, the UK-based company Dandara is offering fully furnished ''buy to let'' flats and apartments to the Indian middle class and high networth individuals (HNIs).

By making a down payment, as low as Rs five lakh, people can own a flat in cities like Manchester, Glasgow and Hamil Hampstead on the outskirts of London, where the company is offering a UK Pound 350 million upgraded 25 storey flats.

All the legalities are handled by Dandara and owners can pay the remaining amount for their flats through the rent accured from letting out the flats and apartments.

''Yes, things have changed since we entered the market in June,'' said Dandara(India), Director, Mona Jalota here.

''We had seen a very positive responses, which has dwindled in the last two months,'' she added.

Ms Jalota said, the lull in the landscape, though unexpected, has provided a good opportunity for the company to consolidate its presence in the market, and its plans to spend a year in generating awareness, brand visibility and building base among brokers, banks and potential customers are very much on track.

The economic slowdown here in India and the recession in UK has also led Dandara to extended their clientele to include banks corporate houses to whom Dandara has already sold 6-7 flats. The company is also entering into tie-ups with wealth management firms to offer its products as a part of its financial investment portfolio.

'' We are holding talks with UK and India-based banks like Citibank, ICICI, Deuscthe Bank, RBS, Barclays and ABN Amro to facilitate loans for Indian clients. The rates in UK are more attractive at 7.25 per cent against 11-12 per cent for home loans. We are not initiating any distress sale of our flats and are confident about the Indian middle class, which is soon expected to be the largest in the world.

We also have faith in our product which guarantees rent for owners, convinience and transparency,'' said Ms Jalota.

The reason why the company is confident despite the economic downturn is because it has acquired huge land banks in the past 15 years all over the UK and has operations all over the world. '' We just completed a successful launch in South Africa,'' said Ms Jalota.

Commenting on the Indian market, Jalota said that Indians want to ''own'' a flat and for them, concepts like taking mortgage is still a new. There is lack of transparency in the Indian real estate compared to the UK market, where the price of land and potential flats are known publicly, she added.

''We wil ride out the storm, and at most, the markets are bound to pick up in the next two-three years so its a good time for long term investors,'' said Ms Jalota.


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