After taking stock of issues such as labour shortage, rise in steel and cement prices, taxation and banking issues, the builders' body, Builders Association of India (BAI) has urged the Maharashtra government to reduce stamp duty at least for affordable housing.
Randhir Bhote, state chairman of BAI Maharashtra said, "Now we all are suffering from second wave of pandemic very badly. To pull out economy from this dangerous situation, the government must take decision to implement such a decision immediately to attract buyers towards affordable housing. This will be good for developers, labour, material suppliers, etc." He added, " The government of Maharashtra should consider a stamp duty of 3 per cent for affordable housing, with no cap on validity."
The Maharashta government had slashed the stamp duty charges to 2 per cent between August and December in 2020 to boost the real estate market, which was facing a slowdown due to COVID-19 and the subsequent lockdown. It was made 3 per cent between January 1 and March 31. In April, the government decided not to extend the 2 per cent stamp duty waiver on property registrations from April.
Lauding the earlier decision of the reduction in stamp duty, Bhote said, "In this situation a good decision was taken by Government of Maharashtra to reduce stamp duty for a period of six months. This was a booster dose to construction industry."
This reduction was for all the transactions like plot, commercials, and residential properties. As per figures from Revenue Department and GST Department, there was a positive effect on revenue. "But the time limit of such a good decision ended and the demand for housing became less," stated Bhote.