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Pune Real Estate: Back On Track

Pune Real Estate: Back On Track

Around this time last year, I remember sitting at this very desk and wondering just where we were headed. When July 2009 rolled by, it would have taken a long stretch of imagination to claim that Pune’s real estate market still had its previous potential. I was looking down at the figures and recall feeling quite worried.

I didn’t have to be an economist to know what had happened. Because of the recession, America had put a stranglehold on the IT industry. Software professionals were returning from Silicon Valley by the planefuls, not sure of what to do next. Pune’s real estate market is not a one-trick pony, and it doesn’t rely only on IT expansion and software salaries, but the market was still hurting. More people than ever before were choosing to stay in rental accommodation rather than buy homes, and the corporate sector seemed to be doing little more than holding its breath and doing damage control.
One of my greatest worries was the slew of malls that was going to hit the market at a time when it was probably at its lowest ever. Who were we going to populate them with, both in terms of retailers and customers?
I won’t say that the market is back with all guns blazing, but matters have improved considerably now. The residential sales and retail lease figures for the month of July 2010 look astonishingly different than from this time last year. I always tend to look at retail leasing first, because the health of the retail sector is a rather accurate barometer of what is happening to a city’s economy. On that count, Pune has had an almost miraculous turnaround. The malls I mentioned are opening on schedule, and all have an almost full complement of anchor and vanilla brands, and shoppers are back in force.

Mohammed Aslam, Head – Pune, Jones Lang LaSalle India

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