The Delhi-National Capital Region has long since been the favourite destination for Indians working in the UAE to invest in real estate back home. Currently, expats and non-resident Indians living in the Gulf region are looking at double-digit appreciation on their property investments in Delhi-NCR. While more than 56 per cent of all real estate investments by NRIs are made in Delhi-NCR, Bengaluru is second with 22 per cent and Mumbai is third with 11 per cent.
In the year 2021-22, middle-income NRIs in the UAE were the demographic to invest most prolifically in National Capital Region realty market. according to insights from a study conducted by Square Yards, one of the fastest growing Proptech platforms in the UAE, major investments by NRI customers go into India's big metro cities. Statistics from Square Yards indicate that Delhi-NCR continues to be the top-ranked destination, clocking 56 per cent of the total properties bought. Other major regions are Bengaluru (22 per cent), Mumbai (11 per cent), and Pune (6 per cent). Furthermore, the Proptech platform also established that during 2021-22, most properties bought by NRIs in the UAE were worth less than Rs 10 million.
This demographics comprised almost 86 per cent of the total properties purchased during this period. NRIs were looking to diversify their investments into multiple mid-value properties, instead of one high value investment. This was in stark juxtaposition to NRIs previously preferring high-value homes, in favour of mid-value properties. The study from Square Yards also indicated that a large majority of NRI buyers in the UAE are over the age of 45 years who were looking to invest in homes as part of their retirement plans. This meant that NRI workers in the UAE were looking for long-term investment options in the India real estate market.
There are many decision drivers that have encouraged Indian nationals living abroad to invest in the Indian real estate market. With banks offering lower interest rates on home loans and a favourable currency movement, the real estate landscape is primed for massive investments. Furthermore, the government has welcomed investments by digitization of procedures and introduction of more transparent regulations. This has further emboldened NRI investors in the Gulf countries to look favourably at the Indian realty sector as a lucrative investment option.
Sharing insights on this Aakash Ohri, Group Executive Director & Chief Business Officer said “"The residential market of the Delhi-NCR region offers great opportunities for NRI investors in the UAE to park their hard-earned money and receive handsome returns on investment. In Delhi NCR, specifically, Gurgaon, which is home to Fortune 500 companies, cosmopolitan culture, robust infrastructure, and world-class amenities, is a haven for NRI investors looking to invest in residential real estate. With its proximity to Delhi and seamless connectivity to the IGI Airport, Gurgaon has always been a favourite hotspot for NRIs from the UAE. The region offers a host of options for investors in luxury, super-luxury, and premium residential segments alike. As we see a massive appreciation in property prices in Gurgaon, especially in areas like Raghvendra Marg (Erstwhile Golf Course Road), DLF Phases 1-4, NRI investors are looking to make significant gains on their real estate investments across luxury and super-luxury categories.”
NRIs living in the UAE have always seen the Indian real estate as a safer investment option. The real estate landscape in NCR, especially in Gurgaon is more mature in terms of coverage and flexibility. Gurgaon not only offers investors a metropolitan lifestyle, but also provides a diverse range of options to invest in affordable, luxury and high-end premium luxury segments.
Indians living abroad have an unbreakable bond with their homeland and like to keep a return option to India for the future. Following the adage to not put all eggs in one basket, Gulf-based NRIs are now looking to diversify their portfolio by investing in multiple affordable segment properties in the region, rather than concentrating on a single high luxury property. While most NRIs in the UAE are over 45 years of age, buying property figures into their post-retirement plans. However, several NRI investors are looking to take advantage of the current geopolitical climate to make lucrative gains on their property investments in the Delhi-NCR region.