Investment & taxes

A. Real estate is a very stable and a good long term investment, provided it is sold in the future. Otherwise it is a good asset serving the basic need of a person i.e; shelter (home) with no income or/& working place. Always consider inflation & taxation before returns on any investment. Also, the tax after rental income or selling has to be considered.

Whether you invest in metros suburb or tier-I & II cities, the key is the value at which one is buying property & the scope of capital appreciation along with his/her own financial goals.

However real estate trusts and mutual funds (REITs/REMFs/REVCs) are being offered. It is still in its nascent stage in India.

One should have real estate as one of the important item in their investment portfolio.

A. The real estate investment gives following benefits

  • As tax haven viz; 30% (varies with budget) relief on income producing property
  • Save capital tax gain by postponing of tax in case of purchasing residential property within same financial year or next 3 years
  • Relief up to Rs100000 in case of interest to FI/Bank
  • Wealth tax exemption
  • Rental income  (monthly/annual flow)
  • Repatriation by NRIs of rental income in phase manner
  • It is hedge for erosion of wealth
  • Can act as safety & security for your daughter/offspring in future
  • Investment in the name of person (not smart) who is unable to manage the portfolio
  • Can be owned in joint name
  • Stable & non-speculative item unlike stocks
  • Capital appreciation (long term)
  • Security for senior citizens as reverse mortgage option
  • Others 

A. The best returns would always be from land, then under construction and ready to use property in this order. As the land is developed its appreciation increases and reaches its peak till the construction is completed. After that the returns is not that high as it is at the time of land acquisition. Redevelopment properties also give higher returns. But as with the returns, the risk is directly proportional to type and stage of property 

A. It will depend upon the short or long term returns one is expecting and his risk taking capability. Residential might give little returns with less risk than commercial properties at different time and different places. Your returns might vary if you are investing by mortgaging the premises (also you can take advantage of leverage).

Commercial would be short term (3years) & residential properties would be long term investment (> 5years).

Commercial may give good rental returns while residential property offers long term capital appreciation. It is better to consult a very eligible property consultant who understands your personal financial short or long term goal.

A. The returns for middle to upper middle segment are always fluctuating according to the market trend, whereas the high-end properties are comparatively immune to correction in the market.

Advantages for middle segment are low liquidity, low risk and might give moderate returns in short-medium period (3-5years). Whereas in the high-end properties, it is only long term returns one should think.        

A. It can be following in respect to long term returns

  • Infrastructure & networking status
  • Economic & income growth drivers
  • Quality workforce
  • Demand/supply ratio
  • Demographic profile
  • Social & Educational status
  • Status of law & order/regulatory framework
  • FDI inflow
  • Others  

A. Apart from the points mentioned in the check list & due diligence (Property Matters FAQs), following can be the factors strictly for investment purpose

  • Name of the buyer from taxation point & loan purpose
  • Wealth tax (one residential property on one family member)  
  • Title of property (Due diligence list)
  • The stamp duty on which rate (agreement amount or market value by revenue department)
  • Taxes after rental income/resale of property
  • Process of purchase (through owner of property or power of attorney)
  • Accurate area of property from approved plan
  • Outgoings like stamp duty, registration, transfer fees, property tax, water & electricity charges, maintenance & society dues, others to be ascertained.
  • NOC from society, other necessary authorities.
  • Details from a competent consultant for under construction property with respect to terms & conditions in the agreement
  • Encumbrance/Mutation certificate if any
  • Possession letter
  • Property registration to be done 

A. There are broadly two investment groups in India viz; end-users & the investors for commercial spaces.

The end-user comprises corporations or business organization whose need varies from small, medium to large offices. These properties are own by individual or private/public limited companies.

The investor comprises individual or institution/s looking for capital appreciation or constant rental inflow. It is considered being the most preferred asset for growing & maintaining wealth among investors.

A: Ideal is what an organisation feel is perfect for them.

However some of the features to make it perfect could be as follows

  • Office as a brand for your company.
  • As a meeting place for customer & vendors.
  • Office as a home away from home for your employees.
  • Ideal location for everybody involved/attached in the company.        

Investment parameters for commercial space

Rental value



(Demand : Supply)



Type of market

Annual yield

Capital appreciation



High demand & no/low supply


High absorption & low vacancy






Medium/high demand & low/no supply


Medium/high absorption & low vacancy






High supply & no/low demand


Low/no absorption & low/no demand




Note : These are gross guidelines & each property is different and have different investment model. 

A. Following would be the factors responsible for success of the mall

  • Credible track record of property management in developing as well as managing the mall
  • Good location with respect to catchments area & footfalls
  • Good mix of tenants with entertainment, food, management, others
  • Pre-completion stage investment strategy (returns are high)
  • Tier I,II cities & suburbs with good infrastructure
  • High rental rates potential (varies with trend in real estate)
  • Small spaces available
  • Others

A. Following may be some important points to buy land

  • Marketable title property
  • Plots approved by nationalised banks, reputed developers, statutory bodies, others for development.
  • Remote outskirts of the metros & suburbs of large cities
  • Good scope for infrastructure developments
  • Well located plots (near highways, crossroads, others)
  • Non agricultural zone to avoid encroachments or zoning change
  • Plan for long term investment
  • Group investment for risk spreading
  • Favourable feasibility
  • Others 

A. REMF is an investment vehicle that buys, develops, manages and sells real estate assets. It provides an opportunity to retail and institutional investors to include professionally managed real estate in their portfolio and share the gains of escalation in property prices without making large amounts of investments. REMF acts as a conduit between an investor & real estate market.

A REIT (Real Estate Investment Trust) is an investment instrument which allows you to own a small part of a large pool of Pre Leased Commercial Real Estate. Globally, REITs are a $2tn market and are a well established asset class in developed markets such as US, Europe ,Singapore etc. It is a company that accumulates a pool of money, through an IPO, which is then used to buy, develop, manage and sell assets in real estate. Almost all the rent received (over 90%) from the Commercial Real Estate is distributed to the REIT investors on a pro rata basis. The REITs in India will make rent distributions on a quarterly basis. The REITs enables one to diversify risk since it owns multiple office parks / office buildings in different cities and has a large number of world class tenants with long term leases. REITs units are listed on the stock exchanges and are tradable freely and hence an otherwise illiquid asset class becomes extremely liquid. REITs in India are regulated by SEBI and  ensures transparency, a high degree of governance and compliance. REITs have characteristics of both debt and equity investments :
* The rent received gives you a high yield and a quarterly cashflow on your investment like a bond 
*The price of the listed REITs unit may increase over a period of time which captures the capital appreciation in properties owned by the REITs. The icing on the cake is that REITs taxation is very favourable for investors. 

It has two unique features i.e;

  • its primary business is managing groups of income-producing properties.
  • it distributes most of its profits (about 90%) as dividends.

A. Capital gain is the profit on sale & transfer of immovable asset, which is an amount of difference between cost of acquisition asset & its subsequent sales price.

Under the section 45 to 55 A of Income tax Act, capital tax is charged whenever the sale price is higher than the acquisition cost of original asset.

The cost of acquisition of property, stamp duty, registration, brokerage, legal fees, improvement in the property, other incidental charges are deducted from the capital gain. These all benefits are only available for residential properties.

The commercial property will be treated as business income & treated accordingly.

However consult your chartered accountant before any transactions for maximising the tax reductions.

A. The property which is held for one year will be applied for short term capital gain tax while those held for more than one year & less than three years are for long term gain taxes.

For arriving at the capital gains following amounts are deducted from sale price for computation purpose:

  • Actual cost of acquisition of asset
  • Stamp duty
  • Registration fees
  • Legal fees
  • Brokerage fees
  • Other cost for improvement of the property like civil, interior works, others.

For long term capital gains along with above mention items following factors are considered

  • Enhanced valuation by fair market value assessment as on 1-4-1981
  • Cost inflation index for both acquisition & improvement
  • Tax percentage (30, 20 or nil) according to the type of capital gain (short or long)

However consult your chartered accountant before any transactions for maximising the tax reductions.

A. Following are the transactions excluded from the taxes

  • Distribution of capital asset either by partial or total partition of Hindu undivided family.
  • Transfer of capital asset under gift or will.
  • Transfer of agricultural land in India before 1-3-1970.
  • Others as may be applicable.