Author: News

Mountains Calling? Dehradun Could Be Your Next Perfect Weekend Destination 

I’m not a summer person, so unless you’re taking me to a hill station where I can at least pretend that summer doesn’t exist, I’ll be in my air conditioned room, thank you very much. The onset of summer also means respite from city life and pollution at a getaway somewhere that isn’t a 100 hours away, but also away enough. Especially for Delhi, that getaway is almost always Uttarakhand or Himachal. Think Mussoorie, but cut travel time by about two hours, as Hyatt Regency has launched its first property in Uttarakhand, in Dehradun, for those of us who like the luxury without having to brave long hours of a road trip for it.

Positioned as a luxury, pet-friendly hotel that overlooks the Malsi range of the Himalayas, the new property serves as an urban resort, with rooms across six categories (the presidential suite is ginormous and has the best view), fit for families and business conventions alike, we realise, in their expansive ballroom during the press conference. But what makes it the perfect getaway are the immersive experiences available to explore the beauty of Uttarakhand via local cuisine, music, a view, and what we all need on a lazy Saturday — the pristine spa.

But first, let’s talk food. Housing not one, not two, but five restaurants, the property does its best to ensure that you have your comfort nibbles available, but also are adventurous enough to indulge in local flavours. Seriously, though, missing out on Kumaoni dishes is missing out on life. Try the bhat ki churkani<and the pahadi kheere ka raita you’ll thank me later. However, if I have to pick one restaurant that I absolutely loved, it’s Beyul, their rooftop bar, lounge, and fine dining restaurant, which offers Tibetan fare with a side of North Indian options. Chef Tenzin Dolma makes beautiful chicken and lamb momos, and the thukpa bowl is a delight. Pair that with a good cocktail and the beautiful view, what a Saturday night that’ll be. All of the hotel’s focus is on using as much local ingredients as possible — even their bar has a platter with different Himalayan salts for your cocktail glass rims, while The Market inside the property sells artisanal local products that you can take back.

Spa trip, anyone? I listed this in href=”https:// strong long weekend as well, but the spa is so good that if you’re actually just driving down to Dehradun (I flew down from Mumbai, and it was so worth the trip), it is a solid factor among many others for you to come back for more. Six well-equipped spa rooms with a steam, sauna, and locker, right off the infinity pool. Dream come true. With intensive treatments meant to wash the city stress off you by using special formulations — my almond lavender treatment had real ground almonds for exfoliation and it worked wonders in undoing knots and tension in my shoulders — the spa at this property will help you truly unwind. I have never fallen asleep on a spa table before this, so you know what I mean by truly unwind.

If you’re looking for some adventure, the hotel arranges hikes, guided tours, local cultural experiences, as well as wellness activities such as meditation and a yoga session set against the backdrop of the beautiful valley. For me, given the stressful lives we lead, this property is meant for you to catch a break, whatever your version of that is. No more driving 10-12-hours for the weekend; instead, you drive less, you go to the hills, and you breathe in its luxury and warm hospitality.

Dehradun school closed after 11-year-old tests positive for Covid amid fourth wave scare

A private school in Uttarakhand’s Dehradun was shut for two days after an 11-year-old student tested positive for Covid-19, said Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Manoj Upreti.

Education Dept has directed Dehradun’s Brightlands School authorities to close the school for two days after an 11-yr-old student tested positive for COVID19. All schools directed to follow protocol of wearing masks, physical distancing&hand hygiene: CMO Dr Manoj Upreti,” ANI tweeted.

Meanwhile, on the covid front, India on Sunday reported 2,593 new Covid-19 cases, which is a marginal increase over the 2,527 infections registered the previous day, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Affairs said.

Also in the same period, an additional 44 Covid fatalities increased the nationwide death toll to 5,22,193.

The number of Indias active caseload has increased to 15,873, accounting for 0.04 per cent of the countrys total positive cases.

The recovery of 1,755 patients in the last 24 hours took the cumulative tally to 4,25,19,479. Consequently, India`s recovery rate stands at 98.75 per cent.

Also in the same period, a total of 4,36,532 tests were conducted across the country, increasing the overall count to 83.47 crores.

While the weekly positivity rate stood at 0.54 per cent, the daily positivity rate reported a considerable spike to 0.59 per cent.

As of Sunday morning, India`s Covid-19 vaccination coverage exceeded 187.67 crores, achieved via 2,30,29,745 sessions.

Over 2.65 crore adolescents have been administered a first dose of Covid-19 jab since the beginning of the vaccination drive for this age bracket.

Dehradun railway station redevelopment on track; approval sought for 83.5-metre tall tower

The proposed station redevelopment project includes a revolving restaurant atop the tower with a 360-degree view of the Doon Valley.

A meeting to review the status of the redevelopment of Dehradun railway station was held between Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Rawat and vice chairman of Rail Land Development Authority (RLDA) Ved Parkash Dudeja.

In the meeting held in Dehradun on December 15, Dudeja, apprised the chief minister on the status of development of the project and sought approval for the Detailed Project Report (DPR) involving a high-rise building of 83.5 metre height, RLDA sources said.

The present traffic problems for entry and exit at Dehradun station will be eased out under the redevelopment plan. Passengers can enjoy a 360-degree view of the entire Doon Valley in about an hour from the revolving restaurant atop the high-rise tower which will be the first revolving restaurant of its kind in Uttarakhand.

The proposed venture will cost Rs 125 crore for the station and Rs 400 crore for commercial development.

The CM advised MDDA to put up the proposal for cabinet approval in the next cabinet meeting scheduled in the third week of January 2021.

We have requested the state government for early approval to the DPR of the Dehradun Railway Station so that the request fro proposal (RFP) can be floated at the earliest. The redevelopment of the Dehradun railway station will upgrade the facilities in line with global standards. The redevelopment will also catalyse real estate development, accentuate the tourism potential and boost the local economy and will create a win-win situation for all the stakeholders,” said Dudeja.

Ranvir Singh Chauhan, vice chairman, Mussoorie Dehradun Development Authority (MDDA), Shailesh Bagauli, secretary, housing, Uttarakhand and Ashish Kumar Srivastava, district magistrate, Dehradun also attended the meeting.

The Dehradun railway station is being developed jointly by RLDA and MDDA, and an MoU was signed last year between both organisations in this regard.

The objective of the redevelopment is to upgrade the station with state-of-the-art amenities such as segregation of entry and exit, food and beverage outlets, dedicated underground parking, and pedestrian plaza.

The Request for Qualification (RFQ) for the development of the Dehradun station on a PPP mode was earlier invited by RLDA.

The DPR that constitutes a part of RFP, is currently under finalisation by MMDA, following which the RFP is planned to be invited in January 2021. The mandatory station redevelopment is scheduled to be completed in three years. The commercial component will be leased for 60 years and the residential component for 99 years.

The total area of land under consideration is about 14 acres wherein about 8 acres land is allocated for mandatory development of the railways such as station building and railway passenger amenities including offices. The remaining 6 acres land will be allocated for real estate development. The real estate component involves residential and commercial, such as malls, hotels, retail spaces, multi-level parking, and office space.

Small Project – BIG Solution for Dehradun Retired Couple..

In the southwest part of Dehradun, retired couple Mr. and Mrs. Mohan own a separated housing building with a large plot and generous portion of terrace space. Over the years, age of the structure and annual monsoon rains had impacted the home, primarily and extensively in the family’s downstairs dining room. The problems that come with interior damp walls and leakage were becoming a concern for the couple due to health reasons as well as the aesthetics. They began investigating new potential solutions for waterproofing, as prior applications of other popular and inexpensive products were not delivering the performance desired nor sealing off water ingress…

The Mohan’s learned of a new brand of waterproofing and heat resistant coatings, OBICCool by OBIC Solutions Pvt Ltd. Although unknown, the firm’s product was backed by an experienced team of IIT Bombay engineers, produced under the “Make in India” initiative and manufactured under stringent quality controls at an ISO 9000:2015 facility and this provided enough evidence and confidence to try this new product line…

The OBICCool product was somewhat more expensive than what they had used in the past, but they were anxious to see if it could truly deliver what it promised so they decided to have the coating applied in a 500 square foot potion of the roof where the water ingress into the dining room was coming from.

OBIC Solutions deployed its own application crews for the project. The area to be treated was first prepped and cleaned. The existing waterproofing material needed to be removed first and the surface made smooth. Once the surface was dry and ready for the next coat, white cement was mixed with same OBICCool 100C material. The purpose of this is to fill any cracks and gaps in the substrate and completely seal the roof with the second coat. An initial coat of OBICCool 100C, a nano-enhanced absorption coat was applied to seal off any porous areas in the cement surface. These steps took 2 and were performed by a crew of 3 members. The topcoats followed this process. The crew completed two topcoats in 6 hours. Normally, a four-layer system which uses a cement coat in between the absorption coat and the final topcoats is applied, however, due to budget constraints, OBIC Solutions was a solution using three coats along with the topcoats to successfully stop water ingress…

Government urged to provide land for the Dehradun ring road..

If the Uttarakhand government gives it 1,100 acre of land along the highway for a logistics park, a fruit and vegetable park, and a wholesale “mandi” that are to be created as part of the project, the Centre has agreed to pay for the full cost of establishing a ring road around Dehradun. Pushkar Singh Dhami, Chief Minister, received a guarantee to this effect when he met with Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways in New Delhi.

The construction of the Dehradun ring road is anticipated to solve the city’s traffic problems. Gadkari additionally requested that the Chief Minister conduct a project feasibility study for the Dehradun ring road.

The Union Minister also gave directions to expedite development on an all-weather road is being constructed for an estimated Rs 120 billion.

Twenty-two project-related works are in the process of being finished, and nineteen already have.

The 42.50 km Najibabad-Afjalgarh bypass, which Gadkari approved, will cut the distance between the Uttarakhand regions of Kumaon and Garhwal by 20 km and the travel time by 45 minutes…

Real estate players betting big on holiday homes

In view of the growing demand for holiday homes, several property developers in India are presently getting into the holiday home market as wealthy individuals are increasingly seeking to purchase second homes in coastal or hilly destinations.

Holiday homes, also known as second homes, serve as accommodations while on vacation. However, holiday homes have gained a new significance in the post-pandemic era with more people opting to relocate, seeking a more relaxing and serene place to live and work. Considering the growing demand for holiday homes, several property developers in India are presently getting into the holiday home market as wealthy individuals are increasingly seeking to purchase second homes in coastal or hilly destinations.

According to leading property consultants, these changes in consumer behaviour are actually being driven by the pandemic and the phased lockdowns that have prevented individuals from travelling to exotic holiday destinations. The work-from-home model is another significant factor driving the shift.

DLF, one of the largest and most renowned real estate developers in the country, is planning to construct residential developments in Goa and Kochi by this year. In the Northern region of India, Uttarakhand has been witnessing the highest demand for second homes whereas Himachal Pradesh is experiencing low levels of demand. Despite this, prominent realty developers are giving preference to sites in Himachal Pradesh, along with Uttarakhand, for constructing holiday homes.

In the past two years, homebuyers have invested and continue to invest in high-value holiday homes as an extension of their current homes, set in the lap of nature, away from metros, as they look for social distancing, health, hygiene, safety, and comfort all in one space, which has also amplified the luxury housing demand in the past few quarters. Hill stations have always been preferred holiday destinations and especially for quick getaways from the hectic and mundane routines,” says Aakash Ohri, Group Executive Director and Chief Business Officer, DLF Home Developers.

Hill stations amid the mountains, with deep gorges, untouched woodlands, and lush meadows have always been popular vacation spots, especially for those seeking a quick escape from the humdrum of city life. For the past two years, homebuyers in India have been increasingly flocking to high-end holiday homes nestled in secluded natural settings seeking social isolation, protection, and luxurious amenities all in one place. Moreover, the pleasant climatic conditions contribute to the popularity of holiday homes in the heart of nature.

“While Dehradun, Kasauli and Shimla have always been popular for quick getaways from Delhi NCR, cities close to these hill stays have also got a major boost. For example, New Chandigarh and Panchkula. Strategic location with a few hour drive from metro cities, great views of the Shivaliks, pleasant climate and calmness are the hallmarks of these cities,” Ohri adds.

It is noteworthy that many big and small companies across the country are currently investing in holiday homes in hill stations, beach resorts, etc. as a way to appreciate and pamper their employees for their hard work. There is yet another trend that is invigorating demand for holiday homes among commercial establishments.

“The trend for holiday homes is spreading like wildfire as people are preferring leisure within their bio bubble due to the coronavirus-induced pandemic. Because there seems to be no end in sight to the pandemic, the work from home culture is inspiring particularly millennials to invest in such properties. The demand is high from both commercial establishments and individuals. Offices that are offering workspaces to employees and individuals have the advantage of generating rental income later by setting up these holiday homes as rental properties,” says Shashank Vashishtha, Executive Director, eXp India.

Holiday homes are attracting the attention of many developers who are looking to invest in this segment in Tier II and Tier III cities.

New Delhi-based realty developer Eldeco also plans to enter the holiday home segment soon. “We will enter the segment with projects in Kasauli, Rishikesh and Goa. We will do a joint venture and develop high-end villas. With our presence in Tier 2 cities, we get a lot of demand from our existing customer base,” says Pankaj Bajaj, Chairman and MD, Eldeco Group.

In light of the positive sentiment, it seems logical to assume India’s holiday home segment is poised for solid growth. Furthermore, the demand for luxury holiday homes will continue to grow in the coming years due to favorable economic conditions.

How Delhi-Dehradun Expressway will give a boost to real estate

The new economic corridor between Delhi and Dehradun was announced by the Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari in February. The 210-kilometer, six-lane express highway project, which is expected to be awarded by August 2021, will be completed by 2023. The Delhi-Dehradun Expressway will reduce travel time from the national capital to Dehradun from five to two hours.

A new six-lane road will be built from the Sahranpur bypass to connect with Haridwar in the new economic corridor. This route would cut the existing six-hour journey time between the national capital and Haridwar to just two hours. The real estate sector on the stretch is going to benefit from the development, and realtors are upbeat about the development.

Delhi-Dehradun Expressway is going to benefit real estate on the stretch; it will make more reputed developers come up with projects in tier II cities falling on this stretch as many buyers would love to have homes at places where prices are little less than Delhi. The travel time matters these days, and only 2.5 hours to Dehradun will help people buy second homes or holiday homes in this Hill city,” says Harvinder Singh Sikka, MD, Sikka Group.

Real estate development along corridors has become a trend and offers a lot of potential across India. Transport corridors like National Highways and State Highways across India have witnessed significant realty development during the real estate boom. The government has also helped in boosting and promoting industrialization in these areas. A combination of production units, public utilities, logistics, environmental protection facilities, residential areas, social infrastructure, administrative services and few industrial areas has been systematically planned along the corridors. These have further helped and accelerated economic growth.

Haridwar is one of the popular destinations, which will benefit from the Expressway. The city is already on the radar of people looking for holiday homes, and now more people will invest there. “People have always been worried about the time taken to move from Delhi to Haridwar, but with this Expressway, the frequency of travel will increase. The serene atmosphere of Haridwar helps people rejuvenate and get charged up for the hectic professional life. We hope that work completes on time, and with this real estate around this Expressway will prosper, which will add value to people’s lives,” says Nagaraju Routhu, CEO, Hero Realty.

Talking about the development, Abhishek Bansal, Executive Director, Pacific Group, says, “Weekend travels to Dehradun mean that retail sector, especially, malls will benefit from it. People love to shop and enjoy at places that are away from their work cities, and with only 2.5 hours of travel, people would throng Dehradun for the perfect getaway that it promises. We foresee a new wave of mall culture in the city as there would be a huge increase in footfalls, especially on weekends.”

Another boost for the real estate in Uttarakhand is the Metro rail corridor planned from Nepali Farm to Vidhan Sabha in Dehradun district. The 73-kilometer Deharadun–Haridwar–Rishikesh Metro Rail corridor in Uttarakhand was authorized by the Unified Metropolitan Transportation Authority (UMTA) in June 2020.

Pathetic condition of roads in Mussoorie

MUSSOORIE: Pothole-ridden roads are plaguing Mussoorie resident during the monsoon season with all major roads of the town in a poor condition, including the Mall Road. Portions of roads have been washed away and at many places, deep potholes have emerged posing a risk for pedestrians and motorists.

Residents say that even after the promise made by chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami on September 2 to get all the roads of the town repaired, the roads are still in a bad shape.
Residents complain that many roads in the town — Mall Road, Kincraig to Picture Palace and Kincraig to Gandhi Chowk, Motilal Nehru Road, Zero Point to Municipal Garden Road — require immediate repairs.
“Mussoorie is a tourist town and the main roads of the town as well as internal roads are in a poor shape after the rains. The authorities are just carrying out temporary repairs on some of these roads, while many still lie neglected,” says Rajat Aggarwal, president of the traders’ body. Residents explain that while the main roads of the town have to be repaired by the public works department (PWD), the internal roads have to be maintained by the Mussoorie municipal council (MMC).

TOI spoke to chairman of MMC, Anuj Gupta who said that the repair of roads by MMC had been delayed due to rains. “Now the rains are abating, and we would take up road repair on priority basis,” Gupta said.
Meanwhile, Pushpendra Kumar, junior engineer of PWD alleged that repair work has started on the Mall Road, Kincraig to Picture Palace and Kincraig to Gandhi Chowk Road and also on Zero Point to Municipal Garden Road.
“We are only carrying out temporary repairs on the Mall Road as the entire road has to be re-laid soon, while on other roads, patchwork is being done. We would finish the repairs by the end of this month.

The impact of FDI on real estate

The government has made great strides in the tiger-shree of FDI in real estate over the past sixteen years, and the time has come to take this a step further.

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The impact of FDI on real estate
Currently, 100 per cent FDI is allowed under the automatic route in finished projects for the operation of townships, malls/shopping complexes, and business centres.
Real estate in India is the second largest employment producer, estimated to contribute to 13 per cent of the country’s GDP, and the third largest sector in FDI flow. It is poised to exceed Rs 65,000 crore by 2024 and 2025. The real estate market is constantly evolving with innovative solutions spanning residential, commercial, and retail projects in the main metros and across the country, even in tier 2 cities. According to a report by IBEF, Bengaluru is expected to be the most favoured property investment destination for NRIs, followed by Ahmedabad, Pune, Chennai, Goa, Delhi and Dehradun.

However, real estate has also been one of the most closely guarded industries to discourage speculation in the sector. FDI policy still prohibits speculative real estate activity. But, during the past decade and a half, the government has gradually loosened Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) regulations, enabling more investment and economic expansion. Currently, 100 per cent FDI is allowed under the automatic route in finished projects for the operation of townships, malls/shopping complexes, and business centres. However, there is still scope for relaxation in FDI in the sector to calm the real estate market chaos caused by the pandemic.

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A significant concern for the industry was the watering down of the 2016 Real Estate (Regulation & Development) Act (RERA) by the states, which allowed some developers to circumvent the regulations. This forced homebuyers to conduct even more comprehensive due diligence for under-construction projects. The homemaker’s apex body, FPCE, applied to the Supreme Court against this watering down of the rules by the states and stated it is against the consumer’s interest. The Supreme Court agreed and ordered the Centre to investigate if the rules created by various states under the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 (RERA) are in accordance with the central legislation and serve the interests of homebuyers.

This will ensure uniformity in builder-buyer agreements across the RERA rules of various states. It will also facilitate trust between home buyers and builders by creating accountability and transparency. The government of India has proposed that 100 per cent FDI in completed RERA-registered projects with more than a hundred flats be allowed. The full benefits of RERA would be realised only if the provisions are implemented in letter and spirit.

Under RERA, builders could fully liquidate developed assets and commence construction on new projects with sufficient funds to meet their buyers’ needs. The sale of their current holdings would permit cash recycling, revitalising the market. The government should capitalise on the rising demand from international investors and focus on attracting more foreign direct investment.

Moving towards corporatization

FDI in real estate would be a boon for all parties. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has given its approval for the Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) platform, which will allow all kinds of investors to invest in the Indian real estate market. It would create an opportunity worth Rs. 1.25 trillion (US$ 19.65 billion) in the coming years. An increase in the FDI cap will attract cheaper finance and more funds from overseas, ensuring projects are completed in time. Furthermore, it will strengthen the Indian rupee and keep inflation in check. The most marked change has been the shift from family-owned businesses to that of professionally managed developers. Real estate developers are hiring experienced experts in fields like project management, architecture, and engineering in order to fulfil the increased need for managing various projects across cities. They are also investing in centralised processes to source materials and organise labour. This in turn means that labour will get the benefit of higher wages and other benefits thanks to MNC firms.

Access to affordable and better-quality housing

Middle- and lower-middle-class citizens will be able to purchase their dream homes. Reductions in the built-up area would help attract foreign capital, resulting in more affordable and better-quality homes. The residential sector is expected to grow significantly, with the Central government aiming to build 20 million affordable houses in urban areas across the country by 2022, under the ambitious Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) scheme of the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs. An additional 25 million units of affordable housing are required by 2030 to meet the growth in the country’s urban population.


The government has made great strides in the tiger-shree of FDI in real estate over the past sixteen years, and the time has come to take this a step further. The easing and consolidation of regulatory requirements for completed assets would be advantageous for all parties—and time is of the essence. Swift implementation would expedite the benefits not only in the real estate sector but in all allied industries. Regulatory coherence paired with consistent efforts to make the sector more favourable towards investment will elevate the real estate market in India, and open up boundless opportunities. In the following two years, it’s anticipated that Indian real estate will draw a sizeable amount of FDI, with a US$ 8 billion capital influx by FY22.

Looking for a home loan? Check out lowest interest rates based on credit score

Some banks offer home loans based on your credit score. It helps you borrow at a lower interest rate from banks and other financial institutions.
Written by Sanjeev Sinha
September 10, 2022 10:28:49 am
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Lowest home loan interest rates based on credit score
Maintaining a healthy credit score is important to ensure quick access to funds from financial institutions.
Buying your own house is one of the major financial decisions. You consider multiple aspects before borrowing the funds for long terms, like 15-20 years. The loan processing involves multiple due diligence before the fund is finally disbursed to the borrower.

When you decide to buy a house, the first thing that comes to your mind is money. How will you arrange the funds? Some people have self-funding, while others take the option of borrowing from financial institutions such as banks and housing finance companies.

Home loan interest rate is very important in the loan processing journey. It decides your future repayments and tenure within which you will pay off the entire loan without delay and default. Almost everyone expects to borrow at a lower interest rate, but it is not possible. Multiple factors come in handy when you take a home loan.

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Your credit score is very important, as some banks offer lucrative interest rates to customers with higher credit scores. The interest rates may vary from lender to lender, but often higher credit score works in borrowers’ favour.

Also Read: Why you should invest in international funds and how to do it

A lower rate is important, as even a .5% interest difference can offer you great savings when you start repaying your loan. People must check their credit scores when searching for a home loan. They should know which lender offers the lowest interest rates to customers with higher credit scores of 750 and above.

Your credit score can increase or decrease depending on your financial habits. Maintaining a healthy credit score is important to ensure quick access to funds from financial institutions. If your credit score is not good enough to borrow large loans like a home loan, it makes sense to follow financial discipline and improve your credit score.

You must pay your bills on time and avoid delays and defaults in repayments towards your current loans. Find out the reasons for a lower score and see how you can improve to get the best deal when you borrow a home loan. One more strategy to borrow in lucrative deals is to borrow jointly. If one person has a poor credit score and another has a high one, the bank can consider offering you the home loan you want. You can also borrow a higher amount jointly as compared to individually.

Also Read: Want to enhance your personal loan eligibility? Follow these 4 tips

Some banks offer home loans based on your credit score. It helps you borrow at a lower interest rate from banks and other financial institutions. Banks offer good deals to people with higher credit scores considering the risk factor. People with higher credit scores are often treated as low-risk accounts, with lower chances of defaulting or delaying loans. That is why a good credit score is always considered an advantage.

The table below compares the home loan interest rates of some banks and housing finance companies based on credit scores. You can compare and take the decision according to what suits your requirement. Always perform your due diligence and read the terms and conditions of the loan agreement before the final decision.

Home loan interest rate corresponding to different levels of credit score

Table consists of home loan interest rate data of banks and NBFCs that shows their home loan rate linked to credit score on their website. Interest rate is indicative and in actual situation the rate may vary depending on various factors and bank’s T&C. Data as on 06 Sep 2022.

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