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Editor’s Note

palash_royYear 2014 has begun with much optimism. There is an across-the-board feeling in the real estate industry that this year will shape out to be a much better one than the year gone by. And the buoyancy is expected after the Parliamentary polls that are likely to be held in April-May.

The all-consuming greed of the land sharks is a tragic reality of our times. And this time, the greed is threatening to devour about 5,500 acres of environmentally vital salt pan lands located in the eastern and western fringes of crowded Mumbai. Our story explores the various angles and colliding interests of the land mafia, the developers, the salt industry and even the state government which is eying this huge chunk of land ostensibly for rehabilitation of the slum dwellers and project-affected people.

This year is expected to be watershed year for the National Capital Region that also includes Noida and Greater Noida. A transformation is expected in the form of a complete revamp of city transportation — including extending of the Metro rail to more sectors and Greater Noida, low-floor city buses, BRTS, bike pillion ride facility right to the place of residence and much more. The chairman of three authorities — Noida, Greater Noida & Yamuna Expressway, Rama Raman, bares his vision in an exclusive interview to Realty & More. Raman says work on the much-talked about night safari in Greater Noida will start this year. To address security concerns, he envisages a plan to set up stateof- the-art integrated police stations, where in an integrated complex, apart from police stations, there will be fire stations, labour inspectors, factory inspectors, etc.

In 1992, when I landed in Delhi for the first time, my first brush with real estate brokers with whom I interacted while trying to find a rented accommodation for myself also acquainted me with a new word — ‘palty’. Soon realisation edged out confusion when I  understood that for the brokers I was nothing but a commodity and that ‘palty’ wasn’t anything but an interested ‘party’ who is on a house-hunt.

But how times have changed! Brokers now have swanky offices with glass doors where professional MBAs work as their employees, and why, some brokers even have call centres and e-commerce facilities for hiring and purchasing. We try to capture that metamorphosis in our story on the changing face of the brokerage firms.

To raise cheap funds, developers for some time now, have found a new route — assured return (AR) schemes. What are these alluring AR schemes? Without being a bank or a financial institution, how do they manage to assure a fixed return? Realty & More investigates…

Delhi is all set to create a new benchmark for ultra-luxury housing when by March-end the realty arm of the Tatas, Tata Housing, will launch its villa project in the heart of Lutyen’s Delhi — in Connaught Place where else…

And in regular reads, this time we bring Vastu tips for your office, and what your stars hold for you in the month of February – Enjoy reading!!!