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“Online property portals promise digitizing real estate will make it hassle-free”

Source: Propertyportalwatch.com

Date: 9 August 2018

The article features highlights of the real estate sector of Bangladesh and its transitions. The real estate is an important sector for Bangladesh which has a population of 166+ million in an area of approximate 147,000km2. Moreover, the urban growth rate annually is 3.25 percent, making the cities densely populated. This poses a challenge for the real estate sector.

Currently, the sector is in its 4th decade since its formation after the liberation war, and the real estate industry comprises mostly private developer companies alongside individual developers. The sector has gone through many ups and downs. For instance after 2004, the sector saw an increase in number of realtors but due to lack of infrastructure and political turmoil, it became sluggish during 2006. The sector experienced another burst of growth in 2009 but it was much short-lived and the industry has been trying to revive since then. Over the last few years, a few real estate companies have been trying to change the scene with digitalization of real estate sector with portals that facilitate online buying and renting of flats and houses. These real estate startups hope to overcome challenges of real estate industry and prove to be useful for real estate companies as well as home buyers and renters.

“REHAB applauds government for lowering interest rate of home loan”

Source: Prothom Alo

Date: 13 August 2018

The article features a press conference by Real Estate & Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB) where realtors of the organization applauded the government for reducing home loan interest rate for government employees. The organization hopes that this initiative will increase the number of home buyers and prove to be a catalyst for augmenting the real estate sector of Bangladesh.

Recently the Ministry of Finance issued a proposal for reducing home loan interest rate of government employees. Employees can get minimum Tk 30 lakh and maximum loan amount of Tk 75 lakh under this. The total interest rate of the loan is 10 percent but the government will provide subsidies of 5 percent, so the interest rate of employees will be 5 percent and the loan repayment period will be 20 years.

It was also informed in the press conference that at present government employees receive a loan of Tk 20 lakh at 10 percent interest rate. Under the new policy, from Secretary-level employees to Deputy Secretary, ie from 5th to 1st grade employees under the national pay structure will get loans up to Tk 75 lakh. They will be able to buy a flat or build a house with a loan. The lowest 18 to 20th grade employees will get loan facilities up to Tk. 30 lakh in all City Corporation and divisional headquarters.

Alamgir Shamsul Alamin said that employees can take this loan individually. Besides, groups can also take loans to build homes. They will have to pay 10 percent of the price of a flat from own investment while the rest 90 percent will be available as a loan.

REHAB President urged all banks and financial institutions to implement one-digit interest rate. In the financial institutions, especially the leasing companies, the rate of interest on home loans is 13-14 percent which needs to be reduced.

  “Home loan interest rates reduced for buying flats and building homes”

Source: Prothom Alo

Date: 17 August 2018

The article features interest rate reduction by Bangladesh House Building Finance Corporation (BHBFC) on home loans when buying flats and building homes. Before there used to be a slight difference in the interest rates of the two loans but now they would be the same. As per rules, BHBFC has applied for the approval of the decision on Thursday to the Financial Institution Division.

BHBFC Managing Director – Debashish Chakraborty recently commented, “Interest rates are being reduced by accepting the government’s directive to reduce the loan interest rate to 9 percent by 9th August. The notification will be issued after approval of the financial institution.” Debashish Chakraborty is hopeful that the interest rate of new home loan will be effective in fulfilling the homeownership dream of low-income and middle-class people.

According to BHBFC source, the organization reduced the interest rates on July 1, 2017 after 11 years. From July 1, 2006 to June 30, 2017, the rate of interest was 12 percent for developed areas of Dhaka and Chittagong. It was reduced to 9.5 percent on July 1, 2017. New interest rates of 9 percent will be effective from July 1.

The loan interest rate for building houses in Tongi, Savar and other divisional and district towns was 10 percent, which was reduced 11 years later to 8.5 percent. This interest rate has not changed. In case of home loans for buying flats, the interest rate was 12 percent for 11 years. It was reduced to 10 percent earlier and currently it is 9 percent.

When asked what would be the interest rates for customers who have already taken loans of 10 and 9.5 percent, BHBFC officials said that the new interest rates will be effective for those loans sanctioned on July 1 or later this year. The previous interest rates will continue for the loans taken before June 30.

5 Technology Trends that will Impact Real Estate in 2018

Source: TMCnet.com

Date: 24 August 2018

The article features impact of recent technological innovations on the real estate sector. Among them are the internet, augmented and virtual reality, machine learning, online home staging, and interconnection of physical and digital interactions.

In the recent years, smart home technology has been one of the most significant innovations. Many people around the world have smart technology in their homes, where it is easy to control the environment like lights, TV, etc. and as the smart technology gains popularity, it is likely to impact the real estate sector in a significant way. Another technology likely to impact the real estate world is the addition of augmented or virtual reality. This will allow homebuyers to sit in their homes and take virtual tours of flats and houses they are interested to buy.

Machine learning plays an important role as it recommends results to consumers based on past search results. Currently, home seekers have to spend a lot of time on real estate websites where they have to enter their search criteria several times. With machine learning, all such data will be stored making online home shopping easier for the buyers. Another technology which is likely to boost the real estate is the digitalization of real estate agents. With this technology, sellers can stage their homes without an actual real estate agent and make their homes look excellent, thereby making it appealing to buyers without paying a hefty amount as commission to a real estate agent. Also with the advancement of technology, there is now increasing interconnection between digital and physical worlds. It is simply the concept of ordering something online and going to the store later to pick it up. With the aid of this technology, a mobile consumer can receive notification of nearby homes for sale and on the way tour the home in a short time, making it easy for both the buyer and seller.

“Shopping complex at Progoti Shoroni, Dhaka”

Source: Jugantor

Date: 5 August 2018

The article features the inauguration ceremony of bti Premier Plaza – a modern shopping mall at Progoti Shoroni in the capital city of Dhaka.

bti Premier Plaza is a project of building technology & ideas ltd. and offers ready shops in Dhaka. Senior officials of the organization were present at the inauguration ceremony which was held on Saturday.

The world class shopping complex is situated over a 68-katha land and offers shops from 50 sft to 1500 sft. The shopping mall has separate zones for various product categories including cosmetics, electronics, computers, mobile phones, food zones, etc. The project also has modern lifts, escalators, generator, ATM booth, fire safety system and adequate car parking space for convenience.