Ask Mint | Not easy to spot bottom of market

Ask Mint | Not easy to spot bottom of market

To help readers keep pace with what’s happening in the real estate sector, Mint’s Q&A will appear every other Monday.

I have been staying in a rented flat and have been waiting to buy a property for the last six months, having read your columns that property prices will be in for a correction. I read last week in a business daily that property prices have started correcting and some say they would further correct by about 10-20%.

Please advise if this would be the right time to go in for a property purchase.

According to me, if you are buying a house for your own use, you should start exploring options. In times like these when property sales are slow, developers would be more than happy to negotiate. Also, there are better chances of getting a property of your choice.

If you are able to negotiate a good discount and at the same time get the property you like, then perhaps that could be the best thing for you. In any case, one will never be able to call a correct bottom to the market.

I am planning to take a housing loan to buy a property. I would like to have a flexible equated monthly instalment, or EMI, plan where I can increase the EMIs after a few years as per my salary so that I can repay my loan quickly.

Do such plans exist? This seems be a better way since prepayment entails a huge penalty and I would like to avoid that. Please advise.

Yes, you can look at the “step-up repayment facility", which will enable you to get a loan today based on an increase in your future income. However, you could even take a normal loan now and accelerate your EMIs in future depending on your income at that stage.

At HDFC, for example, there are no charges for accelerating your EMI payments.

Renu Sud Karnad is joint managing director, HDFC. Readers may write in with their queries and comments to