Time was when people were unable to put their real estate assets to better use. While some cursed the archaic provisions of the Rent Control Act, others, particularly NRIs who are away from home town for years together, could not utilise their assets to earn return on investment due to fear of not getting their assets back.
In a paradoxical situation, while residents are unable to get rental accommodation at affordable prices in metros, apartments were simply locked up without letting out due to lack of professionalised organisation to manage the assets in the absence of owners. With India on the threshold of a new era, international brands specialising in facility management are eyeing the potential surrounding the property management sector.
Demand from local and NRI market
Property management concept is nothing new under Indian conditions but so far it was confined to a few companies only extending the services for corporate sector. But on the retail client’s front, not many efforts were taken due to a combination of factors. Today, there is a demand for property management from two lakh apartments, say industry sources. This is because the demand not only emerges from NRIs but also from residents who are migrating to other states within the country in search of better career opportunities. So the need for such service increases when they invest in housing in one city and suddenly were compelled to shift to another city.
According to industry sources, a few companies are already in operation in Chennai and Bangalore. While some are expanding their operations to other cities, others are in the process of doing so. The competition is not much today but with the passage of time, more companies are likely to enter the fray. In the coming years, 12 major international brands providing similar services are likely to enter India. The comprehensive range of services provided by property management companies vary from preventative maintenance, placement, contracting, response maintenance, signage, commercial cleaning, pest control, annual maintenance contracts, health and safety.
For global Indians or even for residents working in other cities within India, leasing, remittance of statutory dues and other related areas necessitate services from the property management companies. Industry experts feel that the growing importance of property management services should be realised not only by the end users but by property developers and architects as well at the implementation stage itself. This will enable them to better understand the intricacies involved in the maintenance exercise.
For instance, if the top and edge of the building is not constructed in a way that can support appropriate movement for cleaning services, then it brings untold agony to both, feel experts. According to market sources, the rate for property management varies depending on the building, area and type of services required by the clients. Besides maintaining the building, property management companies are now extending their services even for resale of existing units and providing architectural designs. The scope of services may get enlarged further. There are better days ahead for investors in real estate to manage their assets without the need to solely depend on relatives and/or friends. This will also encourage more people especially NRIs/PIOs who are awaiting an opportunity to invest in specific asset category to earn periodical income on investment.
Add-on value to buildings
Additionally, there is a growing realisation among the investors about the addon value accrued to a well maintained building. Even the resale of apartment units is enhanced in a project managed by professional agencies. With the growing number of residential and commercial projects engulfing the city, demand for property management services can only go up. Property developers should also realise the need for facility management services, as it is their reputation which is at stake if their project is not maintained well, say property management companies. As developers cannot undertake such services beyond a particular period after the completion of project, there is an increased need for independent and professionally managed companies providing exclusive services.
Source: Economic Times