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Realty registrations down but revenues soar


While the overall property registration figures across the district and region have fallen in 2017 when compared to 2016, tax collections have soared.

A reading of the 2017 date shows that property registrations in Pune district dropped by 3.41%, though the collection in stamp duty and registration fees went up by 6.60%. Across the region — that also includes Satara, Sangli, Kolhapur and Solapur — the net collections increased by more than 10%, though the property registrations were down by 3%.

The increase in the collection was, in part, the result of a small increase — averaging 4% — in the ready reckoner charges on April 1, 2017. Since then, collections have been higher in seven of the nine months of 2017 in comparison to 2016. In the two remaining months, the collections were because of the implementation of the Estate Regulatory Authority Act (May 2017), followed by GST (Aug 2017).

The numbers debunk the theory of "substantial" property price correction after demonetization. "The collections have been higher because of the ready reckoner rate and the (low) base effect in November and December 2016 following demonetisation," said a revenue official.

The ready reckoner regime was changed from calendar year to financial year from April 1, 2016. For the last financial year (FY2017), the division had a target of Rs 6,198 crore in revenue collection from property registrations. The division was able to net Rs 5,154 crore. The shortfall was mainly because of the blow to the sector after demonetization.

For the current financial year, the state had downsized the collection target by 8.85%, or by Rs 550 crore. Until December 31, 2017, the division was able to meet about 71% of the target. With just three months to go in this financial year, the division faces an uphill task. Incidentally, there has also been talk of the state thinking of the target's upward revision.

The RERA implementation has also ensured that new project launches and new building construction applications are down a sharp 25%. This could mean the government will have to weigh its options before increasing the ready reckoner prices in April 2018 and before setting a higher revenue-collection target.

"The sector has faced too many changes in a short span of time. The sector has changed, but one must wait to see if it is for the better,"


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