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City home rentals set to pick up as more cos start to recall employees

After a bleak spell of more than a year, the rental housing sector is expected to see some signs of a recovery, with companies planning to open offices from January, assuming the Covid-19 pandemic remains contained.

Due to lockdowns and the propensity to work from home, rentals of residential properties in major cities such as Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi-NCR and Mumbai fell 10-20% immediately after the start of the pandemic.

Since then, an increasing number of young professionals have left their rented apartments and paid guesthouses, resulting in an increase in the vacancy rate and a subsequent drop in rental rates. However, as employees return to their jobs, the situation begins to change.

“Demand is mainly driven by the return of working professionals in cities, life returning to normal and office spaces gradually opening up. We expect significant demand to return in the coming months, ”said Deepak Anand, Managing Director of Housr, a cohabitation company.

The rental market is expected to accelerate from the first quarter of 2022, thanks to aggressive vaccination that has vaccinated more than a billion people and a drop in new Covid-19 infections.

This will be supported by plans for most companies to open offices from January and develop them by June.

“On our platform, we observed a 58% growth in tenant registrations between August and September 2021 compared to the same period last year. Interestingly, suburban areas are also experiencing huge demand due to hybrid offices. Fortunately, due to the possibility of the third wave, we can expect the market to perform even better in the coming months, ”said Saurabh Garg, co-founder of real estate platform NoBroker.com.

Employees and employers are also interested in returning to the workplace in a hybrid setting, according to a recent Nasscom-Indeed report, and about half of the workforce is expected to return to the workplace for up to three years. days a week by January.

In addition, nearly 60% of businesses are expected to be ready to reopen their offices by January.

Data security, stakeholder preferences, and employee immunization status are probably the most important factors in determining which employees will return to work first.

“Demand levels have started to rise as companies ask their employees to return to work. Unlike before, landlords and tenants are now ready to negotiate rents and tenures. The market is seeing some stability returning for now, ”said Dinesh Rathod, a broker operating in Pune.

According to the real estate portal Magicbricks, searches for rental homes across the country were up 15% in October from a year earlier, while owner listings were up 6%.

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