Thursday, December 18, 2008

TM City: Loan mela visit

A couple of months back I had been invited for the loan mela organized by TM City ( They had invited everyone who had been allotted a flat (through the lottery process) and a few housing finance companies (hfc) so that the customers could explore available financing options under one roof. Though we were not ready to start operations, I wanted to talk to prospective customers and other hfc's to get a better understanding of what they thought of the project. TM City employees were very helpful and gave me a desk next to other hfc's.

I think the mela was a big success, quite a few people had come with necessary documents and were sanctioned loans on the spot. It was very useful for me - I got to meet various categories of customers. One slightly worrying factor was that a decent chunk was looking at the house in karjat as an investment - or a house in the future when their kids grow up, so not as a primary residence. Their main argument was the lack of schools and other general infrastructure. Interestingly, the long commute into the city was not bothering them as much. A few were just looking for financing only because they got selected in lottery. Some already asked about selling them onto others and get the appreciation, though there were quite a few who were genuinely willing to move to Karjat and commute to Navi Mumbai or Mumbai city. Almost everyone who got allotted the 3 lakh house were in the 10k household income range with most of the income in cash. (and other hfc's rejected them because of that - eg. wife taking tuitions at home earning 6000 a month, or private employers giving 1/2 cheque and 1/2 cash)

On the whole, I had a good q/a session with them. But my interpretation - for people this seems like a subsidised project, and think that market price of such a product will be higher - so quite a few speculative investors!

No comments: