Urban working women choose investing in a home, over other assets, indicates NoBroker research
When Aastha Bansal wanted to invest in a home last year, she realised that just having financial bandwidth wasn’t enough. Not only did she feel intimidated by the number of things she needed to check, but was also overwhelmed by suggestions from people in her network.
“At the end of the day, I wasn’t sure what the right fit was for me, as a homebuyer,” Aastha Bansal says. Coupled with this was the challenge of dealing with brokers, who were not only unreliable with their information, but also did not understand her requirements as a first-time woman home buyer.
Real Estate is an unorganised sector in India, with poor service quality. It has predominantly been an offline play. The money spent on brokerage to secure a home rental or ownership, is often an unnecessary expense. As it is an offline play, the human interference leaves room for errors. Often prospective tenants or buyers, especially if they are women moving into a new city for work, or looking to invest in real estate in the city of their choice face biases, manipulation, and pressures. This was until the advent of technology reduced dependence on the human factor and brought in transparency and autonomy in the property search process.
NoBroker, a solution provider
NoBroker, set up in 2014, addresses the problem by offering an autonomous and democratic home search experience where customers do not have to engage with brokers. This is especially helpful for women when looking to buy / rent homes, as they do not have to chase brokers and can connect with genuine homeowners through with zero percent probability of fraud or bias. As a democratic platform, NoBroker connects property seekers to property owners directly, and helps with all the information required to make the decision available on the platform (time to travel, right rent, right price, locality/neighbourhood information, etc.).
Powered by technology and rich data, the platform automatically discards properties that are not suitable to buyers or tenants as per their search criteria. Therefore, they need to visit lot lesser properties that have been shortlisted post discarding ones that are not suitable for them. The platform is a one-stop shop that makes the entire process of property renting / buying super convenient.
Buyers and tenants often deal with biases or differentiated pricing as brokerage is not a streamlined practice in India. Click here to know more!
Challenges women buyers / tenants face due to unorganised real estate broking
As the need to find safe accommodation intensifies for women relocating to different cities for work, they find it more difficult to deal with this unorganised approach.
Most real estate websites amplify the problem by becoming an advertising tool for brokers to scout customers easily and hence the same problems exist as the transaction moves offline.
NoBroker, an enabler for women home buyers / renters
With NoBroker being a one stop shop for all property related needs, women do not have to chase multiple agents for rental agreements, packers and movers, home loans, legal verification, etc. They can avail all these services under one roof.
As an added benefit for women buyers and tenants on the NoBroker platform, NoBroker makes it a point to define its internal processes as well. Customer Relationship Managers (CRM) at NoBroker are given specialised training for interacting with women customers on the platform. They are sensitised about the hours during which women can be contacted. CRMs are also directed to keep safety as a key criterion and recommend only localities/projects that are safe for women. At every step, checks are made to see if a woman buyer/tenant needs anything over and beyond what is offered.
Says Megha Jain, “When I decided to go through NoBroker to invest in a property, a dedicated relationship manager was assigned to me. She understood my requirements, made suggestions that were an exact fit with my budget and location requirements.” Post the finalisation of the property, the relationship manager also helped Megha Jain with verification, documentation and home loan processes, to complete her purchase. “NoBroker made the entire process seamless for me,” she says.
According to Saurabh Garg, cofounder and Chief Business Officer of NoBroker.com., “The whole point of women coming to our platform is to have a hassle-free, safe, autonomous and transparent process in their home search journey. We ensure that our CRMs are reliable and address any queries that women customers might have and that each of their expectations are met.”
Recent trends in home buying / renting
According to NoBroker, the percentage of women buyers and renters has seen a steady rise in the last two years. The post-pandemic scenario has led to a change in buying mindsets. According to India's first prop-tech unicorn NoBroker, 69% women are choosing to invest in real estate, over gold and other investments like stocks and Bitcoin.
The ratio of women looking at home buying as purely an investment is at 27 percent as compared to men, who constitute 10% of the investment curve.
The percentage of women buyers / tenants has also seen a steady rise in the last two years. In 2020, NoBroker saw 39 percent women buyers / tenants, which in 2021 increased to 43 percent and touched a high of 47 percent in 2022.
Another interesting observation on the platform has been the demarcation of age, where female buyers are younger than male buyers. In the age group of 25-40 years there are 75 percent of women buyers, as compared to 60 percent of male buyers, on the NoBroker platform.
In terms of investing, 72 percent of women buyers choose to invest in the under INR 60 lakhs price points, 14 percent invest between the INR 60-80 lakhs bracket while 6 percent are looking to purchase in the over INR 1 crore price point.
74% of women buyers prefer a society flat while 22% prefer independent homes, and 4 percent were interested in investing in plots.
South Indian cities have a higher demographic of women buyers, with Chennai taking the lead at 51 percent of women buyers, followed by Bangalore, which is the designated IT capital of the country and has a dense women-workforce is at 49 percent, Hyderabad at 48 percent, Pune at 43 percent, Mumbai at 42 percent and Delhi at 39 percent, for women home buyers.
With more women in the workforce and increased buying power of the segment, home buying by women is a culture change that is here to stay. With proptech companies like NoBroker making the process seamless, the propensity of women choosing to invest in a home over other assets is a clear indication of how demand for safe accommodation will be a robust segment that real estate firms and prop tech companies can capitalise on, in future.