Representative Image (Source: Reuters)
The leasing market, which has corrected by 10-30 percent in Mumbai owing to COVID-19, has started recovering as offices gradually reopen and people return to work. In fact, the luxury rental market has already started commanding pre-COVID rates.
“The leasing market is gradually looking up. It is the first asset class to have bounced back ever since the vaccine was announced,” said Ritesh Mehta, senior director and head - West India, Residential Services, JLL India.
Cyrus Mistry, former chairman of Tata Sons, and his, wife Rohiqa Mistry, have placed an apartment in the Imperial South Tower located in Tardeo on rent for Rs 8.92 lakh per month. The apartment is located on the 40th and 41st floor and has been rented to Mitsubhishi Corporation India Private Limited. This was leased in January 2021. There was no response from the company.
According to lease agreements accessed by Zapkey.com
, several consulates such as the one of the Republic of South Africa, Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey, the British Deputy High Commission, the Consulate General of the Republic of Yemen and the US Consulate General have all leased apartments in Mumbai in January 2021.
At the height of the pandemic, the high-end leasing market in the city had witnessed a correction of 10-30 percent in Mumbai. A lease deal was closed at Bayview Apartments in Worli during the lockdown for Rs 3.25 lakh a month.
The rent was Rs 4.5 lakh before COVID. The deal for a unit at Usha Kiran in Altamount Road was sealed at Rs 4.5 lakh a month, compared to Rs 5.5 lakh before the lockdown, according to brokers.
In some cases, rentals declined by up to 25 percent, especially those that had come up for renewal. Landlords, in many cases, preferred old tenants as it was uncertain if a new tenant was round the corner.
January 2021 witnessed the highest number of rent agreements registered in the last five years. As many as 22,655 agreements were registered during the month, against the 21,220 in January 2020, and 16,555 in 2019, according to data made available to Moneycontrol by Propstack, a data analytics firm.
In 2020, rental volumes were down by 27 percent, compared to 2019, largely on account of people returning to their hometowns on account of the COVID-19 pandemic.
If 25,06,55 rent agreements were registered in 2019, only 18,29,04 were registered in 2020. May 2020 saw the highest drop in rental volumes at 96 percent. These volumes witnessed a pick-up only in September 2020 when there was an 18 percent increase, indicating that people were gradually returning to Mumbai and renewing rental deals. This number increased by 27 percent in December, data procured from Propstack said.
According to rental agreements accessed by Zapkey.com
, on January 27, 2021, an apartment in One Altamount, located on Altamount Road, was rented out for Rs 25 lakh per month for 36 months by Rishabh Ramesh Gowani to Vinod Kumar Mittal. The apartment is located on the 12th floor. These apartments cost upwards of Rs 60 crore.
Another property located in The Imperial Tower, a project by the Shapoorji Pallonji Group located in Tardeo, was leased for Rs 5.5 lakh per month for 24 months. The unit is located on the 20th floor. The owner of the unit is Ravi Mahindra Lamba, and it has been leased to Lightbox India Advisors Pvt Ltd. The rental agreement was registered on January 20, 2021.
On October 23, 2020, actress Jacqueline Fernandes leased a fourth and fifth floor apartment in Juhu Karmayog CHS apartment for Rs 6.8 lakh for 36 months from Karmyog Trust, according to documents accessed by Zapkey.com
Some brokerage firms have also started receiving enquiries from expatriates and consulates. “That market too has started showing signs of recovery,” said a local broker.
Brokers told Moneycontrol that most of these units that have been leased are ‘investment’ properties, to be given on lease, and almost all of them have been offered at rents prevailing before COVID-19.
“A majority of these leases are for 24-36 months. This means that they are not short-term leases. These are rents that will sustain for over 2-3 years, leading to a stabilising impact on the real-estate market,” said Mehta of JLL India.
Some of the high-value deals
According to lease registration documents accessed by Zapkey.com
, a unit located on the 43rd floor of Lodha World Crest (Upper Worli) was leased for Rs 3.5 lakh per month on January 18, 2021. The property is owned by Balveer Kumar Chordia and this has been leased to the government of the Republic of South Africa.
A property in Lodha World Crest located on the 39th floor, owned by H Shrikrishnan, given on rent for Rs 2.3 lakh on January 15, 2021, for 36 months by to the Consulate General of the Republic of Turkey.
A sixth-floor property at Lords Apartment in Bandra West leased for Rs 2.4 lakh per month on January 14, 2021, for 36 months to the British Deputy High Commission by Zareen Lord Singh.
An Ajmera Zeon unit in Wadala East leased for 24 months on January 11, 2021, by Mahesh Kishan Wadhwa to the consulate General Republic of Yemen for Rs 2.1 lakh per month.
A 12th floor house in Sunteck Signia Isles in Bandra East rented for Rs 6 lakh on January 6, 2021, for 36 months to the consulate general of the USA, according to the documents accessed by Zapkey.com
In Satguru Sharan apartment complex in Bandra West area, the fourth floor was leased for Rs 3.8 lakh per month for 36 months by JGB Developers’ Prakash Babani to the consulate of the US on January 5, 2021.
In Naman Residency in Bandra East, an apartment was rented to the consulate of the US for Rs 4.2 lakh per month on January 4, 2021.