VISAKHAPATNAM: With a lot of promise for Visakhapatnam city to emerge as a major growth centre in Andhra Pradesh, there is a spurt in the number of inquiries from prospective buyers in the real estate. Interestingly, the commercial real estate seems to be looking upward than the residential market as enquiries for availability of land for setting up business ventures are being made by multi-national companies and Indian firms.
However, the investors as well as the realtors have their fingers crossed on the announcements likely to be made by the Telugu Desam government that could spur growth in the realty sector in the next couple of months.
The realty sector in Visakhapatnam has been experiencing a stagnation for nearly two years with no major project coming up in the city. Though the Centre’s decision to bifurcate the state came
about nine months ago, there was an uneasy calm in the sector with many people opting for the wait-and-watch approach. The situation deteriorated so much that the registrations have dropped by nearly 25-30 per cent in the city since January this year when compared to the corresponding period last year.
The prices have remained stable for nearly two years where a flat in the city’s peripheral areas like Madhurawada, Endurthi, Simhachalam and Gajuwaka areas is about Rs 1,800 to Rs 2,200 per sft. Though the prices have increased to some extent in smaller ventures, the bigger players are not ready to increase their prices fearing that the prospective buyers might get scared under the existing troublesome conditions. But now that the city is poised to attract new industries, the realtors expect the prices could go up in the next six months. However, land prices have gone up by about 10-15 per cent in the layouts by smaller players in peripheral areas of the city.
The inquiries with the real estate firms have increased over the last a couple of months and prospective buyers comprising government employees, professionals like doctors and businessmen are making field trips to major ventures in the city. “The demand started picking up if the inquiries are any indication. Our inquiries have shot up by about 30 per cent and many of them are serious buyers. Though we do not see an immediate jump in the prices, the purchases are surely going to see an upward trend from June onwards,” said T Ravisanker, senior manager (sales and marketing) of Shriram Properties.
A majority of the realtors feel that the real estate sector in Vizag will witness a constant growth as a destination immaterial of whether it becomes capital or not. “Vizag has become the high priority city for many with a lot of growth potential in the sectors of information technology, manufacturing, tourism and education in Seemandhra. Capital or not, either way Vizag is going to be the commercial capital of the new state,” said Seshagiri Mantri, director of Vinayagar Promoters and Builders.
Many investors too feel that at the moment the Vijayawada-Guntur region looks to be the top choice to become the new capital, but Vizag will continue to grow even as other areas such as Kakinada, Rajahmundry and Tirupati will also have their share of growth depending on the government’s decisions. They say that people are only waiting to see what sort of investments will come up in Visakhapatnam that will determine its growth.
“It all depends on the government and its policies towards investments in various industries. Once the government initiatives are clear, one can anticipate what sort of investments would come in Vizag and that will spur the growth of the realty sector,” said Sivaji Talluri, president of Visakhapatnam Apartment Builders Association.
It is learnt that with Hyderabad now being part of Telangana, NRIs hailing from Andhra region are evincing interest in investing in Visakhapatnam.
Interestingly, the commercial properties are attracting more inquiries and many companies are enquiring about availability of land, their prices and conducting private surveys by engaging consultancies.
“Many companies want their presence in both states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. With talk of special status for Seemandhra and buzz around the Vizag-Chennai industrial corridor, companies are evincing interest in investing in Visakhapatnam which is the biggest city in Andhra Pradesh state after bifurcation,” said a real estate consultant.