The Housing and PropTiger merger could be a potential game changer for Real Estate in the country. Here's why -
The Indian Residential Real Estate market is gigantic- over a $100b market. Real Estate is the single biggest expense that a consumer makes in the country. In almost every major country, a significant portion of the real estate research moves online while the transaction is completed offline. A consumer typically researches a home from their mobile phone or desktop and then connects with a trusted broker to complete a sale or rental transaction. India is no different and is at the cusp of this transition to the internet for property research. However, in certain developing markets like China and India, the offline transaction services is not consistent across the country. Very often, you hear the question "do you know a trusted broker?" in social conversations. This statement sums up the state of the brokerage market. In India, almost anyone can become a broker. There are large established firms and Mom and Pop shops offering similar services. This creates a variability in service levels due to differences in knowledge, training, resources. Hence the need for a full stack Look to Book solution online where a consumer can research a property and then be assisted to complete the transaction offline seamlessly. India currently doesn't have any such solution today. This is where Housing/PropTiger can potentially change the rules of the Industry. In China, Soufun, Aiwujiwu are some of the popular examples of similar full stack solutions that are changing how Real Estate is transacted in the country.
A Housing and PropTiger combination brings the following end to end benefits to the Indian consumer :
a) Accurate Information in an Easy to Use Interface - Genuine data on as many parameters possible so that the user can make an informed choice - Building amenities, locality, house interiors, estimated rent, budget, etc. Housing.com is a world class product with millions of consumers providing superlative property search experience across hundreds of thousands of verified listings with photos and data backed by a lot of research.
b) Trusted Transaction Services - Provide consumers with assistance on site visits, diligence on the property, negotiations with the landlord/builder, drafting/reviewing the transaction documents, legal advice, home loans, registration, etc. PropTiger is a proven leader of high quality transaction services across key cities across India with billions of dollars of transaction experience via the fulfillment network built.
The synergies of an integrated platform like Housing/PropTiger, if executed right, not only has the potential for consumer delight and industry disruption, but also the potential for economic efficiency at scale which is a important driver for company sustainability and shareholder returns. Nexus being a shareholder in Housing/PropTiger, I wish them the best in executing the first and only full stack online real estate platform in the country.