The real estate sector in the state is yet to come on its feet post pandemic. There are issues like demand and red-tape nagging the industry, the sector would do well if the government brings in a single window clearance system. Yet, Metro Group, a frontline real estate company in the state, has set much store in the govt’s pro-industry focus. The company has put together an aggressive plan to provide housing to different genres of buyers, especially the middle-class. Sofia Firdous, Director of Metro Group, talks about various initiatives of the real estate company. Excerpts of an interview with Orissa POST

How do you see the growth of real estate industry in the state?

Yes, after the implementation of RERA Act, we see the growth of organised real estate industry and the organised players are launching good projects. However, because of the limited growth of population in cities where there is a good demand such as Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and Berhampur, we find limited scope on growth.

The demand for houses among the middle class is high. How do you meet the demand?

We always try to introduce projects in sync with demand. We have luxurious projects, township projects, and prime projects in the City. Therefore we have a variety of projects for different genres of buyers so that they have an option to chose their dream house.

How many projects have you done? Any upcoming projects?

Now our major focus is quality product. We have now Metro 100 acre township project which is happening in phases. We are going to lunch a big project in Cuttack and we are working on another project which is into its second phase in Trisula.

Tell us about the company’s customer-centric initiatives

A buyer’s emotion is always attached to his home. We respect this emotion as they invest their lifelong savings in that. We always think like we are delivering emotion and happiness to our customers. So, we are determined to deliver best quality products at any given time.

How did you contribute to society during pandemic?

We provided food and daily requirement to our 300 labourers working in our projects. We also delivered daily rations and dry food under Moquim Foundation.

What are the challenges the real estate sector is facing?

Real estate itself is a challenge. Starting from land procurement to handling on-site issues, labour management, liasioning with different departments for approval and occupancy, there are multiple challenges. The state government gave a boost to the real estate sector by introducing ODA Rules 2020. We have requested the government to introduce a single window clearance for ease of doing business, reduction in stamp duty, on time RERA registration. Such initiatives will boost the growth of the sector.

Suggestions to young entrepreneurs

Nothing is impossible if you have the passion and love for your job. There is no shortcuts to success and you have to work hard. People often judge that real estate is for men. But it’s been seven years and I feel very fulfilling.

Does the state need a special law for real estate industry?

We already have the BDA to regulate the approvals and no-objection certificates. Also, the projects having more than 500 sqm or eight flats are registered under RERA.

Any advice to buyers?

Buyers should ensure that builders have good credibility and they should make sure projects are RERA registered.

What is the buying range for a middle-income group?

In today’s time, there is a huge demand for middle-class group flats which are in the range of Rs 40-60 lakh.

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