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COVID-19 impact: Demand for 3BHK housing units on the rise

Buyers are largely working couples with children, most currently pursuing the WFH and e-learning options. In many cases, their budgets have not increased - rather, they are willing to settle for peripheral locations

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Larger homes are not just a preference but a necessity in a work-from-home and study from home environment in COVID-19 times. Sales in the 3BHK category have increased due to homebuyers’ preference for larger homes even in peripheral locations.

The sale of 3BHK housing units has increased by 19% on a year-on-year basis, according to data accessed by PropEquity, a real estate data analytics firm. As many as 30,169 3BHK units were sold in the first quarter of 2021 while 25,307 units were sold in the first half of 2020, it said.

Mumbai Metropolitan Region has seen maximum sales of such units at 53% with 2781 3BHK units sold in the first quarter of 2020 and 4272 units sold in the first quarter of 2021. Chennai witnessed a 43% increase with 2387 units sold in Q1 2021 and 1665 units sold in Q12020. NCR saw a 12% increase with 4988 units sold in Q1 2021 and 4433 units sold in Q1 2020. Pune saw a 34% increase in the sale of 3BHK units with 4171 units sold in Q1 2021 and 3107 units sold in Q1 2020, the data said.

As per ANAROCK Research, pre-COVID trends indicated that demand for 2BHKs was the highest ranging between 40-45%, followed by 3BHKs with 25-30% in most of the top cities excluding MMR.

In MMR, this percentage range would vary because 1BHKs also had a high share ranging between 20-25%. However, post-COVID-19, amid the WFH and online school culture, one has seen a difference in demand for bigger size homes.

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COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

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After considering affordability and their financial viability, many buyers are seeking a 3BHK across most top cities. In this growing preference, one is seeing demand for 3BHKs now ranging between 30-35% as against 25-30% of the pre-Covid period. As for 2BHKs, the demand has shrunk from the previous 40-45% to 35-40% now.

ANAROCK’s latest consumer survey also validates this.

Although 2BHKs continue to be the hot favourite for prospective homebuyers in both pre and post-COVID surveys. However, there was a marginal decline with 49% of property seekers now preferring 2BHKs as against 52% pre-COVID.

“Also, in the post-COVID survey, the popularity of bigger configurations (3BHK & 4BHK) increased as compared to the pre-COVID survey. For 3BHKs we saw demand increase from 31% pre-COVID to 38% post-COVID. For 4BHKs, the share increased from 2% pre-COVID to 3% post-COVID-19, said Anuj Puri, chairman – ANAROCK Property Consultants.

According to PropTiger Data Labs, there were 15,998 units in the 3BHK category sold in Q1 2020 and this increased to 17,200 units in Q1 2021, clearly indicating that there was momentum in sales in this segment.

The pandemic has made homebuyers realise the importance of a dedicated space that can be utilized for work or study, says Nayan Raheja of Raheja Developers, adding future projects will all include an additional room. But bigger spaces do not necessarily mean that buyers will stretch their budgets. They may decide to invest the same amount but move to a suburban location.

Changes in home design are in the horizon. Homebuyers’ requirements these days include a home office, yoga space, decks offering natural light and ventilation among other things, says Amarjit Bakshi, CMD, Central Park.

With the work-from-home trend taking effect due to COVID-19 last year, enquiries for larger houses across cities had increased and the trend continues, say brokers.

Enquiries for larger homes in Bengaluru have increased up to 40 percent with property seekers predominantly scouting for 3 BHKs as against the previously-preferred 2 BHKs, data has indicated.
Buyers are largely working couples with children, most currently pursuing the WFH and e-learning options. In many cases, their budgets have not increased - rather, they are willing to settle for peripheral locations to secure bigger homes and a better lifestyle at a more affordable price.
Vandana Ramnani
first published: May 26, 2021 01:06 pm

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