How 2020 can be year of transformation for Pak real estate industry

Thousands of Pakistanis associated with the real estate sector are caught in an economic crisis as the industry faces a reckoning in the market. Outdated methodologies and the perception that this industry is high-risk and untrustworthy causes many educated, interested individuals to become wary of investing their hard-earned income into land, property or developments. However, with some major changes in both mindsets and industry practices, this industry can become profitable and rewarding for all involved. Whether you’re considering real estate as a career prospect, or you want to invest in this sector, this is an excellent opportunity to create real, positive change in this sector. These can be implemented through a change in approach on the part of real estate agents and developers.

First and foremost, it is the current pool of so-called “real estate experts” who claim to be skilled at what they do. The real estate market has been overtaken by uneducated agents and dealers who don’t have the necessary skillset to guide people further, and in most cases leads to cases of frauds, or losses in other ways. The high-risk, high return factor has disappeared as every dealer promises you a safe and secure investment with high and quick returns, without proper investment strategies backing up these claims.This can be dangerous for any market, especially in a currently brittle economy like Pakistan’s. Overseas citizens return home after working hard abroad for years only to lose their entire life savings to some land fraud cases. This has given real estate agents a bad name altogether. Furthermore, the ordinary citizens can hardly these price hiked houses in the first place, even without the added utility. Many are hand to mouth when it comes to their earnings, so owning a house is a dream for many so when these people do save up enough to get a house, it should be without fraud and complications.

One major issue that destroys the reputation of the real estate industry and makes buyers hesitant to re-approach this sector is the lack of on-time delivery. A worryingly large number ofresidents and overseas Pakistanis have a story of how they invested into a projected where they were promised a house or a plot after so and so years, but even after double the duration of the promised time period, they were still left waiting. The factors behind this can range from NOCs, fake claims, incomplete paperwork, sitegoing into litigation, and investment not procured by the developers in time. According to a report, around 17 sectors are stalled for development in Islamabad. The sector of E-12 is a prominent example where plots were sold out in the late 80s, but allotted owners have still not gained possession of the developed plots. The land award for C-13 was announced in 2008 and the sector spread over 745 kanals and 7 marlas.

The development of the sector is facing a delay due to pending allotment against land sharing and acquisition of the built-up property (BUP). The layout plan is also incomplete.This is what happens when the entire real estate sector is overpowered by dubious, unskilled and inexperienced developers or agents. The working class or middle-class people who had invested their hard-earned life savings should have been advised before about the status of these areas so they could have avoided huge losses. The government is also largely to blame here. This only goes to show the need of proper programs or committees to deal with such issue.