Feng Shui – A path guiding towards harmony!


Originated from Asian countries thousands of years back, Feng Shui is an ancient belief that energy is scattered everywhere and also all the energies are connected. Picking up on this belief, the practice of feng shui was implemented while building homes. Reason – to create a calm and balanced environment in the house.

Initially, feng shui doesn’t seem like to be effective for anybody. But once you understand how it creates a path towards guiding the energies to build a harmonious life, you will not be able to help yourself in imparting feng shui in every aspect of your dwelling.

Here a few feng shui tips to help you start with.

  • If you haven’t been feeling at ease in your bedroom, maybe it is the bed that causes the discomfort. You should able to view the door from your bed, but never place it directly opposite to the door. Maybe you can try keeping it perpendicular to the wall of the door. Also, decorate the room with equal sized night stands or lamps.
  • Never place your desk against the wall with a window. You may think that it will give a good view of the surroundings, but for better focus on your work set your desk from where you can view the whole room.
  • Include all 5 elements in your interior theme. Decorate in a way that each room will remind you of water, fire, wood, earth, and metal. You can substitute things that evoke the same feelings instead of using actual elements.
  • Now that you have included the 5 elements in the house, the next thing to consider is their location. Place them in a strategic manner to improve your luck. For example, a water feature near your home’s entrance signifies good financial health.
  • Avoid having darkness in the corners of the house as they bring danger. So place items like plants, accent chairs, bookshelves, or other furniture to soften them up.

No change in property rates


Recently the daily tabloids were flooded with news that property rates may witness a significant fall. But reality is quite different. Mumbai’s property rates are still constant and won’t be seeing a decline anytime soon. Even the RBI Governor commented that if real estate developers lower the prices and clear the unsold stock, it will help the demand pick up in the market. Unfortunately, it is not that simple.

Let’s explore the reason why the property rates are still high

Though RBI Governor made a suggestion, the developers from around the country had already slashed their prices. However, it is sad that no one acknowledges the fact that any more cut down in rates would just hamper the economy and employment at large.

Instead, there should be a rate cut in the home loans if we are looking to make it easier for the buyers. It can be said that the responsibility doesn’t lie only on the developers. The government too needs to share the responsibility. They should rationalise taxes, ready reckoner rates and streamline the approval process to bring down property prices and provide relief to home buyers. This will be a huge help to ease the burden of EMIs. Developers need support from the government to successfully execute and complete its ambition of housing for all in 2022.

The government urgently needs to provide single window clearance and allow reputed developers to ramp up volumes. Once that happens, sufficient quantity of quality homes will translate into reasonable prices and ‘housing for all’ can become a reality.

Though the developers are being said to reduce the apartment sizes and still demand the same prices, on the other hand, they are not comprising on the kind of lifestyle their projects offer. According to a report released by real-estate consultancy JLL India on August 17, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), which includes Mumbai, Thane and Navi Mumbai, witnessed a 26.4% fall in apartment sizes — the maximum in the country, before that of Bengaluru, Chennai and Kolkata.

Buyers today are opting for amenities in their residential complexes that can integrate their fast paced lives. Also, location is their first preference before buying a house. Hence, developers are coming up with projects that are situated in the prime locations, cutting down their travel time to work and amenities like clubhouse, gym, or crèche for kids so it would decrease their hassles.

Looking at all the factors, it doesn’t seem that property rates are going to witness a nosedive anytime soon.

When your home loan hit a roadblock


What is the biggest hurdle you go through when you plan to buy a house? Approval of home loan. Once the bank gives a green signal to your application, you heave a sigh of relief and start dreaming about your new home. But wait! Did you know you could hit a roadblock even after pre-approval of your home loan? We don’t want to scare you. But yes, your home loan can be cancelled even after pre-approval. Let us find out what can cause such unexpected turn of events so you could be cautious in future.

  1. The bank does not fund the particular developer or project
    It is not just the borrower who has to undergo many scrutiny checks and verifications for an approval of the loan, but the developer too has to work hard to get the approval tag. Along with the developer’s background check, the bank also inspects the projects for which the loan is requested. So even if you pass the exam, your loan application could still hit the dust if the developer or his project doesn’t fall under the approved criteria.
  2. Your choice of floor is off the list
    The bank has its own set of rules and regulations that they need to follow for home loans. So the bank might pre-approve your for a particular amount of the loan, but if the floor you choose could be off limits for the lender even if it fits your bracket. So make sure you ask all the questions to the bank, which limits them to avoid any future hassle.
  3. The location of the project is out of lender’s geographic bounds
    With many cities expanding their horizons, it is quite usual for developers to come up with new projects on the outskirts of the city. Like Panvel is stretching its boundaries towards the Pune side with each passing. However, it could be possible that the project in which you are vying to buy a house falls out of the geographic limit of the lender. This could lead to the cancellation of your loan.
  4. The developer is blacklisted
    Even though rare, but there are chances that your loan was sanctioned after verifying your and developer’s details. But suddenly the developer is blacklisted by the bank due a recent bad borrowing, fund-flow matters, statutory issues, labor issues or even personal matters of the directors. In such cases, the bank has the right to cancel your sanctioned loan.
  5. Your eligibility criteria falter later on
    Your credibility is very crucial while seeking a loan. The bank double checks your financial history before disbursing the loan in case of pre-approved loans. So if you have defaulted on any payment in the past with any other bank, or already have another loan, it could affect your chances of having a smooth ride. Also, if you have two loans already, the bank can reject your pre-approved loan as there is a policy of not sanctioning third home loans.

Know all about home loans? Think again!


For an average earning person, with property shooting sky high, buying his own home seems like a far-fetched dream. That’s when bank loans come into the picture. Bank helps an ordinary person of turning his dream of buying a house into reality. However, for an average person understanding the intricate details of loans become tedious.

Here we are to debunk the misconceptions about home loans or educate you about hidden secrets about home loans that you had no idea of.

  1. Many of us believe that when the bank hikes the interest rate, it will instantly affect the EMIs as well. An upward graph is bank’s base rate is considered as a way to inflate EMIs. This is completely untrue. Banks usually extend the duration of your loan, but never push up the EMI amount. But if paying a higher amount of EMI is fine by you, then just inform the bank to keep your tenure unchanged, which probably is the wisest decision to take in such situations. The reason being that extending your tenure means paying a lot more in interest.
  2. Consider the scenario: You decided to take a loan for 15 years. However, maybe in 7 years you have managed to save a huge sum of amount that can clear all your loan amount in one go. What will you do? You decide to not pay it because your friends tell you that the bank will give you penalty for pre-payment. Wrong! The charge levied on pre-payment declines over the years. As long you are not changing your home loan plan with another lender, bank usually waives off the penalty if the loan is paid through your own funds.
  3. Loan with lowest interest rate doesn’t not mean that you should take it without any research. It surely looks like a meaty deal, but it may not serve your purpose. Examine if the bank is offering you low interest rates in exchange of other charges like processing fee, valuation charges, penalty on pre-payment, no flexibility, etc.
  4. Just because you managed to get a loan approval on your current employment status does not mean that bank is not interested in knowing your updates ever again. On the contrary, the agreement says that you must keep the bank informed about any change in employment if you don’t wish to have any troubles in the future.
  5. When you buy a house through bank loan, property insurance still remains to be your responsibility. Many tend to ignore the clause in the agreement that the house should be insured. However, if you live in an apartment in a housing society which is insured completely, you may be exempted.

Enkay Garden – A Worthwhile Investment

Building View 2

Home is not a place. It is a feeling. No matter how much you travel and stay in luxurious hotels in the world, in the end, we all crave for our home. It is not just a place to live, but a place to create a lifetime of memories. A famous person once said, ‘There is nothing more important than a good, safe, secure home’. And your search for a dream house has finally come to an end. Enkay Garden provides you a welcoming space which will be a reflection of your identity.

Tucked in the serenity of nature, Enkay Garden is an entire township project in Wavanje Village, Navi Mumbai. Very close to the Sahaydri Mountain range and Haji Malang Mountains, the views of the Enkay Garden are blessed with lush green landscapes and unfathomable beauty of the nature.

Many localities in Mumbai are catching buyers’ attention lately. One such location is Taloja. Along with affordable housing, the suburbs offers great infrastructure and seamless connectivity with the rest of the city. Also, the upcoming International Airport in Panvel is one major plus point for Taloja’s residential properties as the airport will be at a distance of about 15 kms from the locality. Also, located closer to NH 4 and Old Mumbai-Pune Highway, Taloja makes travelling to Mumbai, Pune and Thane more convenient.

MIDC Taloja is one of the biggest industrial areas in Maharashtra. With industrial sector expanding every day, there is a dearth of residential facilities available in the area. All the people working there have no choice but to travel from Vashi, Panvel, Mumbra, Thane, Kalyan and Dombivili. Enkay Garden is built at a perfect location as a boom in the real estate field will be seen soon here.

In today’s world, paying a huge amount of rent every month seems like putting your money through the drain. Instead, one can buy his own house. Taloja has a great length of the economic drive to pull buyers. One can easily own a 1 RK unit in 15-20 lakhs. However, the cost of 1-BHK units differs from Rs 14-30 lakh and a 2-BHK unit, with sizes changing from 900-1,200 sq ft, would be accessible in Rs 20-60 lakh.

Even with such affordable prices, Enkay Garden serves an array of amenities and facilities for all. Residents can cherish and celebrate their festivities with their friends and families at the sprawling clubhouse. Along with that, there is a modern, fully-equipped gym available for exercises and indoor sport activities. The flats are furnished with all modern utilities hiking up the standard of living for the patrons.

The residential spaces spell nothing but opulence. With ultra modern flooring, high end wooden doors and stylish granite kitchens, Enkay Garden gives you a chance to explore the nature along with urban resources. All the amenities have been selected and designed keeping customers’ comfort in mind.

With many malls, colleges, international schools, educational institutes, parks and hospitals dotted across the city, Taloja is emerging as the winner when it comes to providing perfect social infrastructure. Enkay Garden understands the shift deems to be most difficult for the kids. Hence, to ease the process, there is a public school right opposite to Enkay Garden where you can enroll your kids or if you are working parents, you can admit your infants and toddlers at a nearby daycare centre for kids.

There is a playground as well for them to make new friends. On the other hand, for adults, there is a garden where they can spend some relaxing time or take up leisurely activities to unwind after a long tiring day. And if you are a fitness freak, you can take a run across the jogging tracks. There is a shopping arcade close to the project as well.

We are sure after reading everything that Enkay Garden offers, you too agree that it is definitely a worthwhile investment.

For more details visit www.enkaygarden.com or you can contact @ 9223333633/8879690223.

Modern technologies we need to adopt to build houses

Recently, a Chinese company grabbed headlines for using 3D printers to build houses. As surprising as it may sound, the company used a giant 3D printer and rapidly constructed 10 houses in a span of 24 hours. Mostly, recycled materials were used costing the homes less than US $5000. The printer is about 22 ft tall and 33 ft wide. It creates building blocks by layering cement mix in structural patterns. These blocks can be rapidly assembled on site with minimum labour.

So China is utilizing modern technology to print 3D homes, what are we doing? Though printing 3D homes in India seems like a far-fetched dream, we can envision making use of modern technologies to provide better housing construction. Emerging technologies, materials and products can play a vital part in fulfilling initiatives like ‘Smart City’ and ‘Housing for all’.

For successful completion of these projects, we need to undertake a few policies which are the need of the hour.

Gathering the information and talent in one place
Providing urban housing has been a hot topic of discussion for years. Many experts have shared their views on various platforms whereas developers have been adopting new practices in their projects. But this information isn’t accessible to all. Hence we need to create a national database portal that will connect all the people, products and policies on a single platform. This will help to progress towards innovation rapidly.

Framework for emerging technologies
In residential construction, whenever a new technology is introduced, the first thing that is assessed is the cost it will incur. It is often rejected on those grounds. Hence, we require a framework which will evaluate the technologies for its attributes and the benefits it offers. For instance, attributes such as end-user acceptability, market availability and maintenance required needs to be taken into consideration.

A hub for innovative technologies
In many countries, there is an innovation park that allows to showcase various integrated housing technology solutions. India too needs to emerge with one such national hub where demonstrations of innovative and emerging housing solutions can be provided. This will help the government and the construction industry to work collaboratively to achieve sustainable habitat.

Focus on efficient delivery
What is the biggest motive behind adopting all these technologies for build houses? A timely delivery. Also, the discussions are pertaining about land, finances and other issues. We also need to give equal importance to delivering the end product. Producing 20 million homes by 2022 is a difficult target to achieve and hence we need to follow lean principles for timely delivery while maintaining the quality of the construction.

Dwindling house sizes in India


With each day, real estate property rates across metropolitan cities in India are reaching new heights. However, did you know the apartments today are smaller as compared to 5 years back?

Yes, developers are downsizing apartments to provide affordable housing for all as well as to push sales for their companies. If we compare all the cities, the biggest drop can be seen in Mumbai. What they are losing in size are making up with height. There are numerous sky-high buildings in the city. However, over last 5 years, the average apartment size has shrunk by 26.4%. Earlier a house of 1400 square feet is similar to a 1000 square feet today. Also, Mumbai has the smallest average size houses as compared to Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad. Don’t believe the stats? Look at all the cramped up spaces everywhere.

If we calculate by carpet area, an average 1 BHK is about 450 square feet, while a 2BHK is about 650 square feet. However, if we rewind 5 years back, it was 600 square feet and 900 square feet respectively. You can also witness a fall in prices of approx 15 to 20%. Many developers today are adopting the same policy to as it is the best way to provide affordable housing along with luxurious amenities to the buyers. This trend started in Mumbai and Delhi initially since the investors care less about the size of the apartment, but the lifestyle it provides.

One of the other factors in downsizing the apartments is that nuclear families are on a rise now. Also, the average age of buyers has changed. More 28-30 year olds are investing in property, thus looking for smaller sized apartments.

Apart from Mumbai, other cities too are following the lead. In Kolkata sizes have fallen 24%, while in Bangalore and Chennai, it has dropped to 23.7% and 22.25 respectively. Delhi has witnessed a 9.7% drop where as Hyderabad has the least of 6.5%.

Benefits of waving off stamp duty tax for property transfer within family


Following the footsteps of Haryana and Punjab, Maharashtra government too passed an order to exempt the owners of immovable property to transfer it to any family member without shelling out stamp duty now. During the Budget session of the Maharashtra Assembly, the government gave a nod to change the Bombay Stamps Act, 1958, to allow the exchange of private property that includes any land area, residential property or building to their relatives without the falling prey to a stamp obligation.

Last year, the Punjab Government decided to end stamp duty on registration in case of transfer of immovable property within the family relations. Earlier, if a man wished to pass on his property to his grandchildren, he would need to pay 5% stamp obligation. For females, the rate was 3%. Now, he would not need to pay any stamp obligation. Taking a lesson from this, the government in Haryana too decided to exempt stamp duty for transfer of immovable property within blood relatives. The rule works only for grandchildren, parents, children, brothers, sisters and between spouses.

Now, even in Maharashtra, only an affidavit on a 500 Rs stamp paper would do the deed. If the property holder id dead, it can be transferred to his relative as a gift.

This news is a huge sigh of relief as it brings along many advantages. The first and foremost is the savings one would make financially. As we know, a property transaction comes under three different categories – sales deed, gift deed and relinquishment deed. In sales deed, even if you sell a property to a relative, it is still considered as a business venture, and you have to pay stamp duty and other taxes.

Coming to gift deed, earlier the scenario was that if you an immovable property is gifted to a family member, you still had to bear stamp duty, but was safe from tax implications; whereas for the relinquishment deed, you had to cough up both, stamp duty and taxes. However, with this new decision, we can save a lot of money. Even a few lacs of rupees are a huge amount for an average earning person. Hence this decision will be most beneficial to middle and lower class people.

Also, exemption of stamp duty makes the whole process a lot less troublesome. For example, a man/woman can transfer the property to his/her spouse with just a simple affidavit of 500 Rs and get it registered from the court. This comes in handy in adverse family conditions like severe medical situations or death of any one.

And lastly, this new order passed by government will keep corruption in check and lower the instances of harassment of the ordinary people. It is common knowledge that government officials try to extract bribes from people in return of the completion of the process of property transfer. Not just that, they waste your time by dilly-dallying the procedure. This ordeal of people will finally come to an end.

Looking at all the benefits that come along with stamp duty exemption on property transfer between family members, we wish all other states start following the same rule soon to make the citizens’ lives easier.

Things first-time landlords need to take care of


Indian metropolitan cities are providing a huge spectrum of opportunities for all thus inviting people from over the country with a desire to make a better future for themselves. This directly means that real estate sector is booming as people need to rent out places to stay. This is interesting many buyers to own a place and rent them to tenants. Leasing a property for the first time could be a tedious process. Since you don’t have much information about all the intricacies of a rental agreement. You need to be extra cautious to not make any mistakes so you don’t get tangled in any legal or otherwise hassle.

We bring you a list of things first-time landlords needs to take care of.

  1. Rent amount

Never decide on an amount before checking the prevailing rates in the market. It would be foolish to ask for more than the current rent amounts, or be ready to leave your apartment vacant for long. However, if you wish to earn a bit more than the market values, you can always furnish the home and offer some luxurious amenities for the tenant.

  1. Insure your house

Like your own house, get your property to be leased insured too. The reason behind this is as you are not in charge of the maintenance of the interiors of the house, but the tenant. Hence, consult a good agent and get the maximum amount of liability coverage for it.

  1. Rental agreement

Make sure you have an agreement in writing and registered. Hire an expert to draft your agreement. It should clearly mention the period of lease, rental amount and deposit. Along with that, add the terms and conditions as per your requirements. For eg, who will pay the bills for utilities, etc.

  1. Agreement registration

Once you make an agreement, the next step is to get it registered since it is an evidence in case of any legal action. Normally it is the landlord who pays the stamp duty and registration charges, however, if both the parties mutually agree, it could be split equally.

  1. Police verification

One of the most vital parts of the leasing process is checking the background of the tenant. It is not only beneficial, but avoiding it could put you behind the bars. Not running a background check is a punishable offence under Section 188 of the Indian Penal Code.

  1. No discrimination

If you are wise, then as a landlord you should not discriminate your potential tenants on the basis of religion, gender, profession, marital status and even dietary preferences. There are many people who don’t follow this policy, but if the rejection is not justifiable in the eye of the law, you need to be prepared to face the repercussions.



Additional expenses while buying a property


Buying a property in India can be a herculean task. For a common man, this could be one of the major decisions in his life. However, he has no idea that he will end up paying a lot more extra than the budget he sketched out. There are many miscellaneous charges other than the property price that will dig a grave hole in the buyer’s pocket. SquareFoot brings you the list of those charges excluding the total cost that every buyer needs to be wary about before investing in a new property.

  • Stamp duty and registration fees

One of the key aspects of buying a residential property in getting it registered. It indicates that the final agreement between two parties has been taken place legally. However, registration charges are a major expense for people. It depends on the total value of the property bought. It usually lies in the range of 4% to 10%. And to add up more to the woes, there is another registration fee payable to the court that varies between 1% to 2% of the value of the property.  Along with it are the additional costs of the lawyer, notary charges, etc.

  • Service Tax and VAT

If the property is under construction then buyer needs to pay service tax whereas VAT is charges over the value of the project construction. Service tax is 12.36% of the 25% value and imposed VAT is between 1% to 5% of the property. In total, both can cost you 8% to 10% of the property value.

Other than these two, there are many hidden charges that developers slap the buyer with. Those are as follows:

  • Utility Charges

Developer provides with all the luxurious amenities like parking space, club house, etc. However, that doesn’t come for free. You have to pay for all the amenities as well as the charges associated with Government utilities. Maintenance and security expenses for personnel, installing CCTV, intercom and others too added to the property cost.

  • External Development Charge

This usually includes the maintenance of roads, water, sewage, electric supply, lights and development of the surrounding area. Though it differs from each location, buyer might need to shell out up to 10% of the entire cost of the project. Even if government asks the developer to pay it, he would in turn extract the amount from the residents in the form of maintenance fees.