13 December, 2023
Unlock the doors to real estate success
Read time: 5 minutes

In today's edition:

  • In the news: UP’s triple a/c(es), PF in ETF, Something’s fishy in Japan
  • My thoughts on: Children-centric architecture
  • Q&A: Earnest money deposit

Handpicked stories from my weekly digest

Here are the 5 stories that you need to be aware of from this past week:

  • Triple A/Cs: The UP RERA has mandated the builders to juggle three bank accounts - collection, separate, and transaction - for each project. The move which aims to ensure transparency, restrict fund misuse, and safeguard consumer interests. It has guidelines prohibiting the unauthorised use of project-specific accounts with heavy penalties for violations. The aim is to bring accountability to real estate management. Read more
  • Airbase: In a leasing spree, Air India has secured 6.2 lakh sq ft in E-Innovation Centre, Gurugram. With annual rent at ₹90 crore for 21 years, the property deal includes a 4% annual rent hike. The Tata-owned airline has remained tight-lipped on the move’s purpose. Earlier this year, AI had shifted its headquarters to Gurugram after the Maharashtra government had acquired the iconic Nariman Point building. Read more
  • JV-ietnam: United Overseas Australia and CapitaLand have joined forces for a $247.1 million property project in Vietnam. The collaboration envisions a skyline adorned with high-rise towers, blending residential, commercial, and retail spaces. UOA Vietnam BDC and CapitaLand (Vietnam) are set to co-pilot the development, with UOA owning 30% and CapitaLand the dominant 70%. Read more
  • PF in ETF: The Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) revealed a robust investment of ₹27,105 crore in exchange-traded funds (ETFs) during the ongoing fiscal year till October 2023. Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Rameshwar Teli, highlighted this in a parliamentary update, noting a consistent upward trend from the previous fiscal year. Read more
  • Something’s fishy: Thousands of tons of sardines and mackerel have mysteriously washed ashore on Japan's northern coast forming a silver sea blanket spanning a kilometre. The phenomenon has baffled locals and researchers with speculations ranging from fish exhaustion (running ‘out-of-air’ while escaping a predator) to Fukushima's water-release impact. Despite curiosity and free surplus, authorities have warned against consuming the fish due to unknown circumstances and potential environmental repercussions. Read more

Child’s play


Image credits: Etsy

Children add colour to lives - and to housing societies. In the vibrant canvas of Indian real estate, a new trend is emerging, one that puts the spotlight on the youngest members of our households. Architects and homeowners alike are recognising the importance of designing spaces that not only meet the functional needs of families but also cater to the unique and imaginative world of children.

Building Beyond Bricks: Traditionally, home architecture focused on practicality and aesthetics for adults. However, a shift is underway, with architects incorporating features that stimulate creativity and contribute to the overall development of children. From play zones to study corners, the emphasis is on creating environments where little minds flourish.

Key features of children-centric architecture:

  • Playful spaces: Imagine a home where play isn't confined to a room but seamlessly integrated into the design. Playful spaces, both indoor and outdoor, are essential to children-centric home projects. Treehouse-inspired nooks, colourful slides, and interactive walls transform a simple space into a playground.
  • Study corners with a twist: Education becomes a joy when study corners are designed with a touch of innovation. Architects are incorporating multifunctional furniture, vibrant colours, and ample natural light to create study spaces that inspire curiosity and focus. These corners not only serve academic needs but also encourage a love for learning.
  • Safety and accessibility: Children's safety is paramount in any home design. Architects are mindful of creating spaces that are easily accessible, with child-friendly furniture and fixtures. Rounded edges, non-slip surfaces, secure staircases, grills, and child-proof electric outlets ensure against any freak accidents.
  • Spaces that grow: Children-centric architecture is future-oriented. The designs anticipate the evolving needs of growing children. Flexible spaces that can be adapted for different purposes over the years ensure that the home grows with the family, providing a sense of continuity and stability.

Success stories: Children-themed homes are a relatively new concept in the Indian market as there are not too many developers catering directly to this niche. However, leading architects in India are embracing the concept and projects in Pune, Bengaluru, Gurugram, and Kochi exemplify this trend.

  • Gera’s ‘Multiverse of Joy’: In Pune’s Kharadi, Gera’s Childcentric projects ‘Island of Joy’, ‘Planet of Joy’, and ‘World of Joy’ offer amenities like GoKart tracks, elevated wave pools, and bowling alleys all within residential premises with a variety of room setups in homes.
  • Godrej Nurture: Bengaluru’s first child-centric residential project by Godrej focuses on combining an emphasis on open spaces and geographical proximity to everything a child needs. Along with cricket pitches and futsal courts, it also caters to young children with amenities central to them like Lego rooms. The project aims to give the children a “childhood enjoyed off-screen”.

Guidance for homeowners: If you're considering a children-centric home project, here are a few points to ponder:

  • Collaborate with architects: Work closely with architects who understand the unique needs of your children for a design with them at the centre.
  • Engage children in design discussions: Incorporate the preferences and ideas of the little residents into the design process.
  • Prioritize Safety: Ensure that safety measures are at the forefront of the design, both indoors and outdoors.

The future of Indian homes: As India grows, its children population will grow and they will require homes dedicated to them. As we embrace the era of children-centric architecture, homes in India are poised to become not just living spaces but dynamic environments that foster growth, creativity, and joyful living. The inclusion of child-centric features by more and more developers as we move forward will be a testament to a forward-thinking and family-centric approach to real estate.


I am planning to sell my 3-BHK in Lucknow for around 85 lakhs. How much is a reasonable earnest money amount for me to charge?
- Faizal

Hi Faizal,

The amount of earnest money to be charged should be fixed taking into consideration factors like the general demand for the said property in the market. Generally, a 3-5% of the total price should be a fair deal for both parties, but some markets can even allow for up to 10%. While a decent earnest deposit can give the seller a sense of assurance, it might also force you to make concessions in the final contract or reduce the number of potential buyers attracted. In case of keeping a high earnest deposit amount, it would be recommended to involve a third-party escrow rather than dealing with the buyer yourself.

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Disclaimer: This newsletter is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice. Please conduct your own due diligence prior to making any decisions.

By Ashwinder R. Singh
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