Project lending has remained subdued, reveals NHB report

The retail housing loan market is expected to grow at least 20 per cent this fiscal despite concerns of a likely slowdown in economic growth, National Housing Bank Chairman R. V. Verma said here on Thursday.

More than last year

This projection is higher than the 16-18 per cent growth witnessed in the housing finance market in 2011-12, Verma said after releasing NHB’s report on Trend and Progress of Housing in India, 2012.

Although the retail housing loan market has been seeing robust growth, project lending (directly to developers) has remained subdued.

“This is an area of disconnect that we have captured in our trends and progress report. There are supply-side constraints which are emerging from policy relating to land, lack of adequate availability of land and confusion relating to land acquisition in various States”, Verma said.

Verma also said that NHB also intends to upscale in the coming days its involvement in the rural housing finance market as well as in low/moderate-income housing.

While the NHB report has delved deep into the demand side of housing finance market, it does have some limitation on the real sector side in terms of housing starts.

“We are in the process of developing an information system so that we get more granular information from the supply side (housing starts etc)”, he said.

BETTER coverage

Verma later told Business Line that the report will in the coming days strive to analyse the housing price movements on a national basis. As on date, the report confines itself to price movements in Residex cities (about 20 cities).

Meanwhile, from this quarter (January-March), NHB’s Residex (an index tracking housing price movements) will enhance its scope to cover additional six cities to take the overall coverage to 26 cities.

The six new cities include Raipur, Dehradun, Nagpur and Coimbatore.

srivats.kr@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on February 7, 2013)
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