The Rise of Baner, Queen Of Pune’s Suburbs

Kishor PateKishor Pate, CMD – Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd & Hon. Secretary, CREDAI (Maharashtra).

Pune’s real estate sector has many growth locations, but few today are as prominently on the radar of developers and property buyers as Baner.

This area began its climb to fame as one of the city’s last outposts of scenic environs. It went on to become one of Pune’s most coveted residential destination by the city’s software and IT-enabled services professionals.

By this yardstick and by all measures, Baner is an oustanding real estate success story. This article by Kishor Pate, CMD – Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd & Hon. Secretary, CREDAI (Maharashtra), outlines how it got there.

Baner is located in the north-west quadrant of Pune, which also encompasses Aundh and Balewadi. Today, it is known as a high-growth location in terms of real estate development with demand for housing coming primarily form the IT/ITES industry.

However, while Baner has been on the Pune real estate scanner for quite a while, it was first known mostly for its natural splendour. Its backdrop of gently undulating hills and verdant greenery were sufficient to embellish it with the name ‘Queen of the suburbs’.

Today, it has become known as one of the most desirable to Pune’s residential real estate locations.

Baner Real Estate’s ‘System Upgrade’

Baner has come into force mainly because of the rapid evolution of the Knowledge corridor concept. The Government of Maharashtra, not slow in recognizing Pune’s unique potential, developed this innovative infrastructure concept in order to catalyse the synergetic economic relationship between Pune and Mumbai.

Among other things, the Knowledge Corridor initiative gave rise to the six-lane, dual-carriage Mumbai-Pune expressway, which was the first of its kind in India. The Mumbai-Pune Expressway was fortified with optic fibre cable links along its entire expanse and thereby linked the major IT parks of these two cities.

Thanks to its proximity to the Hinjewadi IT Park, Baner immediately benefited from this and became the most definitive location in Pune for IT infrastructure, housing, transport and power provision. Additionally, it is connected to Bangalore – India’s Silicon Valley – by the Pune-Bangalore Highway.

Aundh, which was one of the first areas to come up in terms of residential property demand because of the Hinjewadi IT Park, soon reached saturation point in terms of development potential. Baner, which has now become the penultimate residential destination for Pune’s IT/ITES-centric home buyers, began to see rapid development in terms of overall lifestyle quotient.

Thanks to its proximity to some of the city’s best education institutes, shopping and recreation outlets and healthcare facilities at Aundh, Pune University and Balewadi, this location is a natural choice for employees of the Rajiv Gandhi InfoTech Park at Hinjewadi. This massive information technology nexus, currently spread across approximately 1500 acres, is being developed in four phases and has emerged as one of Pune’s primary white-collar employment generators ever since its launch.

Sereno at Baner
Hinjewadi IT Park – An Outstanding Success Story

In fact, this IT Park is a success story in its own right and has single-handedly boosted Pune’s profile on the national and global business map. The first phase, covering 198 acres, enjoys 100% occupancy, with companies such as Infosys, Wipro, Persistent, Cognizant, Tata Technology, Geometrics, KPIT and the Blueridge Township / SEZ in place.

Phase 2 covers 470 acres and stands at 80% occupancy with names like Infosys, Wipro, the DLF SEZ, the Embassy SEZ and the International Biotech Park on the credits roll. Phase 3 is a 985-acre spread which stands at 60% occupancy with companies like Tech Mahindra, Microsoft, Hexaware, KPIT and the Acendas SEZ.

The upcoming 1100-acre phase 4 is poised to be a comparable chapter of commercial real estate triumph. The effect it has had on the type of demand for residential spaces in the adjoining areas – in terms of configurations, amenities and facilities – is a text-book case of an avant-garde industry and its accompanying culture dictating the shape and form of a market.

An Evolved Homebuyer Profile

Proximity to such giants would in spell success in any location, but Baner is itself now home to a number of important InfoTech companies, ensuring that the IT employment market there has come into even sharper focus. Because of the IT-orientation and the often significant salary packages attached to it, Baner is also home to some of Pune’s most selective home buyers.

For this reason, the residential projects that work best at Baner are those that feature excellent construction incorporating sustainable features and smart-home facilities. The software generation is directly wired into the latest global housing trends, and awareness about the benefits of green construction is generally high.

Short on time and high on tech-savvy, home buyers from this segment also prefer properties that incorporate smart security and lifestyle features. They prefer two and three bedroom apartment configurations which must often include sufficient parking for two cars. This definitely sets them apart from the norm, and residential projects in Baner must necessarily cater to this evolved demand.

Kishor Pate Quoted On RBI Credit Policy

Kishor Pate, Hon. Secretary – CREDAI (Maharashtra) and CMD of Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. says,

In a real way, the home loan is the driving force behind the residential real estate market. Without home loan, a large portion of the population would be forced to live in rental houses.

Because of this facility, one can own a home without having to have enormous amounts of ready cash. Because of the vital role they play in sustaining the real estate market, it is not only home buyers who depend on home loans, but developers as well.

There is no mystery attached to the fact that home loan interest rates play an important role in determining the level of demand for housing in India, especially in the smaller cities. We are disappointed by the fact that the RBI has retained its hard stance on the key lending rates.

Developers are suffering under the high costs of borrowing, rendering them unable to come down on their rates. At the same time, home loan interest rates have hit an all-time high and are not coming down.

Owning a home should not be an option only for the creamy layer of the Indian middle-class who can pay the high interest rates currently prevailing. The country is making no progress at all in addressing the dire need of housing for all.


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The Importance Of Estate Planning

Kishor PateKishor Pate, CMD – Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd.

Estate planning is not only about property, but about all assets that one has secured in one’s lifetime.

Technically, the concept of estate planning includes assets such as automobiles, insurance policies, bank accounts and fixed deposits, stock market shares and mutual funds, pension plans and anything that can be considered an asset.

However, it is also true that in most cases, property constitutes the largest investment that we will make in a lifetime.

Planning all aspects of one’s property holdings is therefore of utmost importance. Regardless of whether an individual owns only a single residential property or a multi-property investment portfolio, estate planning cannot be ignored.

There needs to be complete clarity on:

• Who will eventually inherit one’s property
• What the tax implications to those who inherit it will be
• Whether the property will be free of financial encumbrances after it is inherited
• Where funds to pay off any outstanding debts on the property will come from.

Estate planning is no longer just for the wealthy. Today, most middle-class people have made significant investments and live in fully owned or mortgaged properties. This means that estate planning is a pertinent consideration which touches more lives than ever before.

Estate planning with regards to property does not end with making a will. Leaving property to one’s spouse or offspring without any provision for meeting the implied tax burdens will not help the beneficiary much. Moreover, one needs to make sure that the will is not at odds with the existing laws.

Obviously, one would wish to avoid the possibility of legal confusion between family members when the will becomes effective. However, there are now specific laws which come into force with regards to property – for instance, when a married couple decides to part ways.

Estate Planning

One needs to make sure that the law does not dilute the intended effect of a will when it comes to residential property. Also, the effectiveness of a will will depend on whether or not the property in question was inherited or purchased during the owner’s lifetime. It is very important to discuss the contents of one’s will with a competent lawyer.

Also, any existing debts on the property owner could cause the creditors to contest the will after his or her demise. In such a case, the beneficiary of the will may become responsible for covering this debt. The debt may even be greater than the value of the property.

This can happen if the property owner had taken business loans for which his or her personal assets can be attached in case of default. These aspects needs to be carefully scrutinized by an experienced chartered accountant.

For mid-income home owners who have purchased their property with a home loan, proper estate planning would include a term insurance policy. The proceeds of this policy should be sufficient to cover any outstanding payments on the home loan, and also all other outstanding debts. Also, a property owner must make all family members aware of the contents of his or her will. This can go a long way in reducing the possibility of legal confusion at a later stage.

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Amit Enterprises Partners With CNBC AWAAZ For Business Show On Pune

CNBC Awaaz logo‘Future Cities Of India’ Offered Sharp-Focus On Pune’s Business Potential

Pune, May 7, 2012: On May 5, 2012 Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd (AEHL) partnered with CNBC Awaaz to bring India’s premier business channel, to Pune.

Future Cities Of India‘ is a highly focused show which identifies some of these key contributions made by the smaller cities – cities that are rapidly making their mark in terms of economic and industrial prosperity. The series rising opportunities for business, consumption of retail, investor participation is slowly and steadily adding up to the growth of the city/state.

This show’s Pune edition examined the city’s limitless growth opportunities, and explored what is required to unleash and realize its ultimate business potential. To achieve this, ‘Future Cities Of India – Focus Pune‘ engaged the city’s most prominent business personalities and thought leaders in a gripping debate on the thrust areas for the development of business, industry and infrastructure.

The day-long seminar also documented Pune’s futuristic quotient based on current and upcoming developments by way of infrastructure, education, health care and industrial development.

“We were happy to partner with CNBC Awaaz on this important initiative,” says Kishor Pate, Chairman & Managing Director, Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. “It is high time that the country’s prominent business channels examine and document the various factors that have made this city such a popular destination for business, trade and industrial investment.”

The show’s opening session, which was telecast live from Pune, brought together representatives of the city’s most prominent businesses and corporate houses to discuss the overall progress in the region in the recent years. The discussion encompassed job employment opportunities, healthcare, real estate development and education – all of which support the city’s overall economic prosperity.

This was followed by the Investment Special, a live session which laid special focus on the investment opportunities prevailing in Pune. It examined the investments being made into various assets classes like gold, equity and real estate, and the kinds of profits these investments have yielded.

While consumers provided insights about their interest in investing into these verticals, investors offered insider prespectives on the kind of opportunities prevailing in the real estate space. The kind of returns one can expect in the near future by investing in Pune were discussed in depth.

The show ended with the Awaaz Business Summit – a live panel discussion featuring Pune’s independent entrepreneurs, presidents of trade organization councils, senior representatives from the city’s industrial sector and Government officials. The panelists discussed and drew up a road map for the further developmental agenda for Pune.

Pune Celebrates Sachin Tendulkar’s 100th Century

Master Blaster Attends Exclusive Felcitation Event By Amit Enterprises

PUNE, May 3, 2012: On May 1st, 2012, legendary cricketer Sachin Tendulkar was in Pune to celebrate his 100th century in test cricket. In an exclusive event organized by Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd (AEHL), the Master Blaster was felicitated for his outstanding achievement by Member of Parliament Supriya Sule and Vaishali Bankar, Mayor of Pune.

Sachin Tendulkar felicitated by the Mayor and Kishor PateDuring the function, Sachin was interviewed by Sunandan Lele, consulting sports editor of IBN-Lokmat and sports consultant for the Sakal Group. In this one-on-one interview, Mr. Lele retraced Tendulkar’s amazing sporting journey, his modus operandi for dealing with stress and his recent nomination to the Rajya Sabha for the benefit of the audience.

“We made Sachin Tendulkar a Punekar last year, and it seemed fitting that we take the initiative of celebrating his 100th century in Pune,” said Kishor Pate, Chairman & Managing Director, Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. “As a Punekar, he expressed to us his desire to celebrate his 100th century in our city. This event was planned so that he can do so in the presence of his fans in Pune in beyond.”

Pune's fans hold up their bats to Sachin TendulkarThe event took place at Ganesh Kala Kreeda Mandir, Swargate between 12.00 to 2.00 and was attended by a veritable Who’s Who of Pune. In his personal address, Sachin Tendulkar recounted his journey towards becoming India’s most celebrated cricketer and offer insights into his plans for the future. Pune’s cricket fans were able to gain a rare insight into the man who has inspired AEHL’s mottos ‘Built For More’ and ‘Satisfaction Is Just A Word’.

Sachin Tendulkar with Amit Enterprises' Kishor Pate “Sachin is the greatest cricketer of his generation – and perhaps all generations to come,” says Kishor Pate. “In a relatively short period, he has achieved more than any other Indian cricketer. There are several more chapters to be added to his saga of achievement. At this event, Pune felicitated the man for whom ‘Satisfaction is Just A Word’.””

About AEHL:

Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. is a 28-year-old Pune-based real estate company. Founded in 1983, the company is an acknowledged industry benchmark and a trend setter in the Pune market, with innovative quality products that have consistently put new suburban locations on the city’s real estate map.

AEHL chose Sachin Tendulkar as brand ambassador because of his penchant for continuous improvement and breaching all limitations on achievement.

AEHL’s Green Homes Project, Is Baner’s Scenic Splendour

Gaia, AEHL's Green Home Project in BanerEveryone dreams of building their own home – a home which is uniquely designed to their needs. A home they can truly call their own.

Some dream of a house with breathtaking views of sunset. Others wish for private nooks and corners to escape from the humdrum world.

Our new project in Baner, Pune, was envisaged with all these factors in mind. It was conceived and launched to cater to discerning Pune’s home seekers. With Baner being the perfect location for home buyers in Pune, we set out to create homes there that meet every family’s needs. An exclusive project of 480 specially designed homes, it caters to those who shun the beaten path of the masses and look for the extraordinary.

About Baner

Baner is close to Aundh, and that counts for a lot with a majority of Pune’s property buyers. However, its foremost claim to fame is the beauty of its natural surroundings. In fact, Baner is comparable to a minor hill-station. As an added bnous to home owners in Baner, all the necessities of living are readily available.

In property investment terms too, Baner has little to complain about. It is located next to the Mumbai-Bangalore Highway – a major plus with regards to its property investment potential. Also, the Hinjewadi Infotech Park is comfortably accessible – an especially significant factor for residence seekers from this major employment hub.

With a number of non-IT commercial complexes also operating in the vicinity, Baner is truly blessed when it comes to locational advantages. Transport-wise, Baner is well connected and it features on a number of regular bus routes. This fact has done much to increase the demand for quality housing there.

Obviously, Baner’s scenic splendour needs to be enjoyed from an appropriate vantage point. One of the first things that AEHL decided on was a rectilinear development site for the placement of its residential apartments. This style of development has ensured that there is an exceptional view of the lush surrounding greenery for every apartment.

Next, we scripted in the recreational needs of our clients. This took the form of a fully equipped recreation centre, complete with landscaped water bodies and pavilions, conveniently located between the four towers that comprise this project.

At the ground level of this recreation centre, we provided a number of thematic activities to the entire garden setting – inclduing children playgrounds, a fun maze, a dream sand castle pit, BBQ pavilions and a fitness station complete with outdoor seating.

The ‘Green’ Factor

The concept of green homes has been very well received in Pune. This is not surprising, since a large segment of the city’s contemporary home buyers have traveled the world and seen this trend being adopted and lived by in the West.

Our project is in the process of being awarded ‘green’ certification by IGBC (Indian Green Building Council). This means that it is a ecologically friendly project – the flora, fauna and natural resources of the location have been perfectly preserved.

But ‘green’ is not just a technical term for us – it is a very much a colour, a spirit and a way of life here. Various types of trees species have been strategically and tastefully planted all around the project’s generous open spaces, providing spectacular beauty, shade and a rich natural source of oxygen replenishment.

The apartments themselves have spacious layouts that make full use of natural lighting and ventilation to vastly enhance the quality of life.

This is Pune’s final answer to the world-wide movement towards environmentally friendly homes, and also to Pune’s most aspirational home buyers.

Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. Catches The Green Development Wave

IGBC Certification Underway For Two Projects – More To Follow

PUNE, April 14, 2012: The accelerated pace of India’s economic progress has brought with it a new orientation – and a new level of awareness – to Indian real estate development.

With the watchword today being ‘sustainable development’, Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd (AEHL) has now taken a firm step into this progressive new domain. AEHL’s projects in Pune – like Astonia Royale at Ambegaon – are on their way to becoming certified as ‘green’ by IGBC (Indian Green Building Council).

Astonia Royale

“It is a logical step to take,” states Rohan Pate, Director – Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. “A number of our clients are repatriating NRIs who look for more than just top-of-the-line construction quality and amenities in the homes they buy.

Because of their exposure to the trend of sustainable homes in the developed countries, they are looking for similar solutions here.”

Attuned to the new residential mantra in the West, an increasing number of NRIs are indeed in search of homes to match their accustomed lifestyles are now actively seeking projects with genuine ‘green’ features in India. There is no doubt now that the future of Indian residential real estate lies in eco-friendly, energy-efficient developments.

Global market analysts note with concern the steady erosion of the Indian realty arena. Unregulated and ecologically wasteful developments are choking the marketplace. All over the country, unscientifically designed buildings are compromising the environment.

These buildings waste energy and produce locality-corroding contaminants. With the global real estate focus now firmly on sustainability, the spotlight in India is now on ‘Green’ buildings – environment-sustaining residential developments.

What Is Sustainable Development?

The dictionary defines sustainability as a process or state maintainable at a given level for prolonged periods. This, of course, brings the question – how does sustainability pertain to real estate development? In the real estate context, it means developing land and buildings in such a manner that the environment can sustain future growth.

“The new residential development mantra adopted by AEHL transcends all previous models and focuses on projects that have vastly reduced negative effects on the environment,” says Rohan Pate. “Sustainability is an extremely progressive real estate development approach that balances economic interests with social and environmental concerns.”

Rapid urbanization is fast compromising the urban real estate marketplace. This presents a gross contradiction of the international blueprint, in which urbanization goes hand-in-hand with corresponding environmental sustainability measures. By virtue of survival of the fittest, environmentally sustainable buildings now drive the demand for residential projects in India.

Residential developments oriented towards preservation and conservation involve numerous variables and solutions. Evolving a housing project that qualifies for ‘Green’ status calls for a comprehensive design approach that incorporates critical environmental, economic and social dynamics.

• Creating a housing project that conforms to current international standards requires that the development:
• Involves the lowest possible site impacts right from the design stage
• Incorporates specific facilities for waste management, climactic control, heat and energy preservation and water treatment
• Takes into account health impacts on occupants as well as the surrounding locality
• Functions seamlessly to conform with these parameters from the pre-construction to the post-construction phase

“We have applied for pre-certification from IGBC for all our upcoming projects in Pune, Mumbai and Nasik,” says Rohan Pate. “Our designers and engineers are being trained for complete orientation towards the sustainable development paradigm.

We are aiming for nothing less than the AEHL brand becoming synonymous with Green residential solutions all over Maharashtra. Astonia Royale in Pune is the first paving stone on this path.”

Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd Wins Accolades At Asia Pacific Property Awards

International Recognition For Bloomfield Unicorn Villa In Pune

Amit Enterprises Bloomfield UnicornPune, April 11, 2012Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. has once again earned international distinction and recognition for excellence. As the leading developer of avant-garde residential spaces in Pune, the company has emerged a winner in the prestigious Asia Pacific Property Awards 2012-13.

Bloomfield Unicorn Villa, the winning entry, has been awarded in the Single Units category of these much-coveted international property awards, which recognize global excellence in property design, construction and specifications. The award was won in the face of stiff competition by numerous major players in the international residential property arena.

Rajendra Pate, Director – Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd. will receive the award at a high-profile gala presentation dinner at Kuala Lumpur on April 27th. He will also participate in the two-day Property & Hospitality Summit on April 26th and 27th there, along with other presidents, CEOs, managing directors, chairpersons and other decision makers from the international real estate community.

“We are, of course, delighted and honoured by this recognition,” says Kishor Pate. “I would like to add that the judges have affirmed what we have always known – that only quality and real value matter when it comes to residential property. Pune is an exacting and demanding property market, and we have managed to stay ahead of our competitors by the virtue of exceedingly high standards in our projects.”

The Asia Pacific Property Awards are part of the long-established International Property Awards, and a globally acknowledged symbol of excellence in global real estate. Attaining this coveted award once again underscores the tradition of excellence that has been the hallmark at Amit Enterprises Housing Ltd.

The judging panel for the Asia Pacific Property Awards consists of approximately 70 professionals, including Fiona Nixon, chairman of the Australian Institute of Architects; Patrick Grove, co-founder of IPGA Ltd; Peter Bolton King, group chief executive of the National Federation of Property professionals; David Dalby of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and Mike McNamara of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).

Stuart Shield, president of the International Property Awards, says, “We received a record number of entries for the Asia Pacific region this year, and the standard was extremely high. Any company to win one of these awards has shown exceptional levels of professionalism and competence in their respective field.”