The adage ‘Experience is the best teacher’ is attuned well to Suresh Kumar Sureka, designated partner of Springville Greens LLP, who entered into real estate business after having over two decades of experience in stock market. Sureka, who completed his degree from Bhawanipur Education Society College in Kolkata, started his career as a stock broker and worked in his family business at a very early age before venturing into real estate sector. In an interview with Orissa POST, Sureka speaks about the outlook of real estate business in Odisha.

How do you see the growth of real estate sector in Odisha in coming 5 years?

Odisha’s real estate market will remain strong as it is one of the fastest-growing states of India with a stable government. Investments are coming. Apart from the capacity expansion of existing industries, new industries are also being set up. Odisha, particularly Bhubaneswar, is gradually becoming the health and education hub of eastern India. This means that in coming years we are expected to see a boost in demand for housing and other services.

Will property prices fall this year?

Property prices will not fall in 2023. The prices may remain stable for the next 12-18 months if raw material prices do not shoot up. In last one year, construction cost has gone up substantially. Again, due to work from home option in many sectors, there have been huge savings with the working class which has created a huge demand in housing sector. The higher demand is keeping the prices stable. From 2013 to 2021, property prices have not appreciated and remained on the lower side. Post-Covid, property demand in tier 2 and tier 3 cities has gone up due to remote working.

What is Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act and how does it help a builder and a buyer?

Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act seeks to protect homebuyers while boosting investments in real estate industry. Post introduction of RERA, the grievances are addressed and resolved more rapidly. The Act provides a standard of carpet area measurement and gives the home buyers the right to get property information. One of the most significant advantages of the Act is that it prohibits the builder from taking more than 10 per cent of the cost of the flat as an advance or an application fee. It also makes the builders more accountable as far as deadline of the proposed construction is concerned. It imposes several clearances that a builder must adhere to before engaging in a sales agreement. While the Act imposes penalties on developers for delaying projects, it also penalises the buyer for delayed installments. Incessant payment delays despite prior notice empower the developer to cancel the booking and refund the amount to the buyer after deducting the booking amount and interest. Overall, the Act not only safeguards the rights and interests of the homebuyers but developers as well.

How was your journey as a realtor?

After spending around 20 years in stock market (from 1991 to 2010), I decided to diversify my assets and capital investment strategy. I saw huge potential and opportunity in Odisha, owing to the developmental plans in Bhubaneswar alongside a very stable government. This nudged me to enter the real estate market in 2011-12 by acquiring land in Bhubaneswar for a real estate project. I joined hands with SUREKA Group and Merlin Group for the development of projects in Odisha. The first project was Springville Homes (between 2014 and 2019) in Jajpur Road, spanning over 5 acres and having 494 accommodation units. The second and ongoing project is Springville Greens, spanning over 10.645 acres in Tamando, Bhubaneswar with 728 accommodation units.

Tell us in brief about your education and work experience?

After completing B.Com from Bhawanipur Education Society College in Kolkata, I started my career as a stockbroker with Bhubaneswar Stock Exchange. I had learnt business acumen from having worked in my family business in Kolkata at a very early age. I have a lot of experience in the capital market and 18 plus years’ of experience in real estate business.

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