Nellore: Probably for the first time in the recent past, the cost of housing plots in the district has decreased even in posh localities such as Magunta layout in Nellore City because of lack of demand. Interestingly, there are no takers even when the sites are offered for Rs 1 lakh less than the market price per ankanam (72 sq.ft) and the situation is no different with respect to apartments.
Admitting that the real estate market is less liquid, a senior official of the registration department said many realtors had moved to capital city Amaravati, in search of green pastures, because of the market conditions in Nellore. The current scenario is being attributed to unscientific increase in land prices during the past two years. There was hardly any market from the last four years and only investors were buying residential plots in the city hoping to reap rich benefits. Now they are stuck and ready to dispose off the land for the price they bought, since there is no hope of market revival in the near future.
The market is down by 30 to 40 per cent in the city, 50 per cent in the extension areas and 25 per cent in the rural areas. “However, this is the right time for people wanting to own a house, to purchase housing sites in the extension areas and build houses,” realtor Y. Venkateswarlu of Pinakani Infra said. He blamed Nellore civic body authorities for the stalemate in the real estate sector, while pointing at lack of infrastructure such as roads, drains, power and water in the extension areas.
Nellore Mayor S.K. Abdul Azeez held realtors responsible for the impasse in the sector, alleging that they jacked up land prices to such an extent that it got beyond the reach of even middle class or upper middle class people. “The cost of a plot (33 ankanams or 2,400 sq.ft) is Rs 1.20 crore and the cost of the construction is Rs 30 lakh in localities such as Audithya Nagar. Tell me whether it is within the reach of even an upper middle class family,” Mr Azeez asked. He added they would go for land pooling to provide housing sites in reasonable price after the formation of the proposed Nellore Urban Development Authority.