New trends in False Ceilings

Ceiling Trends

Luxury has no limits, especially when it comes to your dream home, your private castle, the lord and king of all that you survey. With the economy on a yearly rise, the earning capacity of young Indians is also going up. And for those who know what luxurious living is all about, homeowners are ready to spend more and more in their quest to create the most perfect and stylish look.

False ceilings are the current rage and you don’t need to go to fine hotels anymore to enjoy the elegant beauty of false ceilings. Real estate builders are providing this feature into their luxury home projects that are being grabbed by homebuyers like hotcakes. After all, everyone wants to live in the best that money can afford.

For those not in the know, false ceilings are an additional layer of artificial ceiling added for the purpose of glamorizing the home’s interiors. More people are now opting for this feature, even those who are renovating their old homes are looking into ways to introduce this elegant feature. And it’s not just the magnificent look of the false ceiling that you get to enjoy, but other environment-friendly benefits too. The false ceiling helps to keep your house cooler and cuts down on your electricity bills; it also improves the acoustics of the room, creating a more private atmosphere. The best part is that you can use this elegant façade to hide exposed wiring, cables and ducts.

There are different kinds of false ceilings depending on the materials used as well as the method of installation. Most interior designers offer the single level, straight line false ceilings with minimalistic designs and just some LED lamps as embellishments. Some of the false ceiling types trending now include:

Drywall ceilings 

The beauty in this conventional type of false ceiling is its simplicity. These types of ceilings are typically 8 feet high and are basically a plain flat surface that the homeowner can decorate according to their taste.

Tray ceilings 

This design has the unique ability to make smaller rooms look bigger. It is flat-surfaced, with a recessed inner rectangular center, creating a two-layered elevation. They create greater impact when used in the dining room or kitchen. Lights are usually added in-between the two levels for a magnificent effect.

Wooden ceilings 

These wooden ceilings take you back to the retro trends of years gone by. The wooden texture adds an immeasurable luxury quotient to the room’s ambience and goes well with rustic-themed homes. You can add to the elegance by including chandeliers or pendant lighting.

Coffered ceilings 

In the earlier days of grand living, they were made of expensive wood or carved stones that increased the grandeur of a home. A coffered ceiling is made up of tiles or panels that fit into a suspended grid. These panels can be carved or designed to add further beauty to the room. They are best used in large living areas, creating an atmosphere of opulence and grandeur of bygone eras.

Suspended ceilings 

Also known as drop ceiling, they are essentially a metal grid ceiling suspended from the main ceiling. Lightweight panels, usually made of POP are inlaid into the grid to create acoustic ceilings that are very functional in homes and offices alike.

False ceilings are the current rage today for their exotic appeal that increases your homes luxury value – time to go get your own ceilings fixed-up too!

Increasing Demand for Luxury Apartments

Luxury Apartments

The earning capacity of people is increasing and with the world getting more globalised, people are also becoming more aware of the finer things in life. After all, who wouldn’t want to live in the lap of luxury, if it’s easily available! And with banks bending over backwards to offer home loans at attractive rates, the younger population isn’t waiting anymore to save a decent nest egg, but are going ahead by taking home loans and buying the homes of their choice and living in the moment.

Real estate builders are also aware of this demand for luxury apartments and are going out of their way to include more and more of luxurious fittings and amenities to indulge their discerning clientele. There is no limit to luxuries a builder can include into their apartment complexes and have the customers satisfied. Traditionally, luxury had meant a prime location with good social infrastructure and amenities like swimming, and a kids’ corner. Currently, there are the super-luxury apartments for the millionaires, then the luxury apartments for the nouveau riche and finally luxury apartments for the IT-rich which are usually located around the IT parks.

To cope up, residential builders are bringing in the latest technologies, impressive architectural designs and an increasing use of smart-home devices like light sensors, motion sensors, digital locks, video and audio door phones, etc. They are also into collaborating with internationally acclaimed, foreign architects and designers to boost the star status of their projects. A plethora of world-standard amenities that are at once exotic as well as very useful are now available; this is aside from the fact that staying in such luxurious apartments makes a statement about your own social standing in the society.

Some of the amazing amenities that you would find in modern-day luxury apartments include private swimming pools on apartment terraces, jogging tracks on the apartment rooftops, shopping centers and beauty parlors within the apartment complexes, piped gas, in-house mini theatres, concierge desks, air-conditioned gymnasiums, indoor gaming areas, in-house crèche, etc. Living in luxury apartment homes that offer such fabulous amenities is almost akin to living in exclusive hotels for a lifetime…

These luxury apartments are usually very spacious and come fully loaded with top-quality branded interior fittings and décor that often uses imported materials. You can find apartments with Italian marble flooring and luxurious European bathroom fittings that all work in tandem to increase the desirability of these exclusive projects, offering the lifestyle of the cream of the society.

Luxury home sales have been on a rise in India – with the country having the fourth largest population of millionaires and an estimated 2.36 lakh people living in the High Net Worth category. Aside from this, Forbes publication of the ‘World’s Billionaires’ for 2017, shows that India has 101 billionaires too! With so much money available in the country and the GDP set to grow at a higher percentage for the next fiscal year too, it’s safe to assume that wealth creation is only set to rise further in the country over the next decade or so.

And since people spend more on luxury only when they are sure of their future earning potential, the outlook for luxury homes is only slated to go up higher. And India’s real estate builders need to be prepared for offering more homes in this segment in the near future.

Documents required for Home Loan

Home Loan Documents

 

Everyone dreams of having a home to call their own. It could be a small house, a big house, an apartment, villa or even a hut! It’s the satisfaction of owning the four walls in which you sleep each night that matters. However, homes don’t come easy on the pocket and it takes quite some time to save a large enough nest egg to enable you buy one. Alternatively, you could wisen up, and take a home loan instead to pay for your home, as homes are getting more expensive with every passing year. And paying back the money isn’t too difficult either as you can stretch out your repayment to the bank in easy monthly installments spread out over a decade or two.

Before settling on a bank for your home loan, you need to first shop around for a bank that gives a comparatively reasonable interest rate and low processing fees. Different banks have different protocols when it comes to disbursing home loans. However, there are a few basic documents that you must have in hand when applying for a home loan.

A checklist for these documents should include a photo ID proof – a driving license, passport, PAN card or Voters ID will do. Next document would be an address proof; electricity bill or better still, a registered Rent Agreement would do very well. An employment letter might also be required by some banks, especially if your current job is less than a year old.

The financial documents required by the bank include a 6 month bank statement from your primary bank, salary slip of the past 3 months for salaried individuals as well as proof of tax payments for the past 2 years (Form 16). For self-employed non-professionals, Income Tax return for 3 years is required plus computation of IT returns certified by a registered chartered accountant. Most banks will also request for a separate loan processing fee check. All these are very important and requested by all banks and financial institutions as a pre-requisite for loan agreements.

For self-employed professionals, additional proofs of existence of business as well as office address proof are a must. Property documents or utility bills can suffice as office address proof. To be eligible for home loan, a self-employed professional should provide 3 years old Saral copy as well as the company Registration License. For income proof, the last 3 years Income Tax returns along with Computation of Income, Profit and Loss account, Audit report, Balance Sheet, etc, will do. Some banks might additionally ask for an Educational qualification certificate.

When taking a home loan, the collateral is usually the property which you are using the loan to buy. Alternatively, the loan can be taken against some other asset or property. Since collateral is being used for the loan, you might wonder at the reason behind the need for an income proof. After all, if there is a default in the repayment, the lender can easily take over the asset in accordance with the loan rules. But it’s not easy selling off the collateral property; hence the bank needs to have proof of a steady flow of incoming income to pay the EMIs.

The average bank takes about a week to disburse a home loan after their surveyor has gone over the property you are planning on buying, and should ideally send you periodic updates and statements as after-sales services.

 

Advantages of Buying an Apartment

Apartment Keys - Favourite Homes

 

Home-buying is serious business and something that most people do just once in their lifetime. This makes it all the more reason why you need to be extra vigilant when investing your hard-earned money. There are numerous types of homes available these days making the homebuyer spoilt for choice. You have a choice of apartments, villas, villaments and independent homes.

Though the traditionalist naysayers will always be there shaking their heads in disapproval, apartments are the best option today when it comes to buying a home. But don’t just go into that decision blindly, take the opinion of others, and weigh the pros and consequences in your mind, and then decide.

Since apartments come in all sizes, you can buy the size that suits you and family’s needs. It’s not just the size, but the standard of the apartment that come in varying levels too, with the designing, fittings and amenities being some of the deciding criteria. Apartments are great for small families with growing kids. The community atmosphere and the easy availability of friends of similar age groups provide lots of friendships for your children; well, not just the children alone, as parents also get to make lasting friendships with other occupants of the building.

Apartments come loaded with amenities including gyms, swimming pools, indoor gaming area, children’s play park, badminton courts, barbeque pits and in some cases, even a mini theatre! Installing these features into a villa or independent house would dig quite a deep hole in your savings, if you had to do it alone; but their easy availability in apartment-life makes living here invaluable.

Aside from these amenities, there is the all too important feature of a multi-tiered, 24×7 security system available that keeps you and your family safe in your absence. With many people having jobs that require frequent travelling, apartments suit them the best as their homes and property remain secure in their absence.

There are numerous other perks to apartment living including designated parking spaces, power back-up, alternative water supply back-up, reticulated gas, fire safety mechanism, etc. The best part is that you don’t have to go out and queue up in dusty government offices to pay the bills for these facilities.

And then there is the major question of property maintenance; while in an independent home, you will need to make all the effort to get someone to fix your problem, in apartments, these problems are taken care of by the caretaker committee. You can also enjoy the beauty of the manicured gardens and lawns without having to struggle for their maintenance too.

An added feature is that apartments are available throughout the city area and not limited to city fringes due to space constraints. This way you can get to choose the apartment that’s closest to your workplace or the kid’s schools, without having to move away from all the facilities available in the city center.

While all the above are very relevant points, a glaring fact is that apartments are always cheaper by almost one-third the cost of independent homes and villas, even when they are luxury apartments. So a major advantage with apartments is that they aren’t so heavy on the pockets, and you still get to have your own four walls to call a home.

So taking all this into consideration, looks like apartments come out tops when buying a home!

 

Latest Trends in Interior Designing

Interiors - Favourite Homes

 

Building a home is a highly complex process that involves a team of professionals to take care of the numerous aspects involved. It all begins with an architect and a draughtsman working together to design the basic structure of the house. This is done keeping factors like the climate, locally available materials as well as the seismology of the area in mind. The design is executed by the civil engineer and his team of masons, electricians, plumbers, etc, with regular checks by the architect to ensure that the design is being followed. Then there are the interior designers who work with the architects and engineers on arranging the basic layout of interior spaces within the building. Builders like ‘Favorite Homes’ have their in-house interior designers.

Interior designing gained prominence with the development of society and an increasing complexity in architectural designing resulting from the development of homes and buildings going vertical. It is an art that requires scientific knowledge of technical issues like placement of doors and windows, acoustics and lighting. Interior designers make interior spaces more functional, safe and fashionably beautiful by adorning spaces with harmonious hues of colors, lighting and decorative items. These designers are fully educated on the blueprints of the buildings which’s interiors they design as well as the building codes and inspection regulations.

Getting the interior designing right is key to bringing out the beauty of the architecture of the building; it’s like the spice added to the curry to bring out its flavors… Proper designing is not only supposed to make your home aesthetically pleasing, but also attractively functional. Interior designers can even make a 1HK home appear spacious and attractive, when done right.

Trends keep changing every year and the interior designers have to be up to their game in knowing what’s hot and what’s not. This year, the emphasis has gone back to soft pastel hues that represent peace and simplicity. Their use in any room is bound to create a sense of calm and restfulness. From dusky pinks to frosted blues and lightest beiges, you can create the best of color schemes to get a sense of spaciousness in your home.

A good place to start would be with the soft furnishings; pastel shades give the room a feeling of softness and freshness. Even if you don’t want to invest in re-upholstering your sofas, you can introduce pastels in the form of throw cushions to create a harmonious ambience. Mix-and-match them with different wood tones to create an interesting mix. Beige cushions go extremely well on soft blue upholstery for gentle simplicity as well as with praline hues for overall feelings of calmness.

Team them up with walls that are dusky pink or soft peach in color for added warmth. Wall papers featuring pale flowery or geometrical designs in double shades of soft hues would get you a similar effect too.

Since some pastel shades can be considered too feminine, go for contemporary homewares and decorations that have clean lines and aren’t too ornate or big. The use of large pastel colored rugs that fit all the furniture are not only luxurious but create a sense of spaciousness too.

Overall, pale shades create a sense of space and airiness, so get your home designed the right way…

 

Approvals and Certifications of the Builder to be verified before Buying a Villa/Apartment

Real Estate Approvals and Certifications

 

Investments in property take a lot of time and effort, unlike investments in the stock market. Exiting from property investments also takes a lot of time as compared to selling off stocks, so do take your time to think carefully before buying into property.

That having been said, we as Indians are ‘duty-bound’ to buy a home, whether a villa or an apartment, at least once in our lifetime….. as per the dictates of our culture – and human nature. Just like the birds, we also need a nest to call our own. But buying into a villa or apartment can be a tricky process as not all builders have above-board work ethics. Which is why when you are buying a property, make sure it’s from a verified builder who has been around for some time and has a reputation to match – just like us at Favorite Homes!

Once you have zeroed in on the property of your choice, you will have to roll up your sleeves and go vigilant! This is the point where many people get into trouble for not having gone through the fine print on the builders papers. You will need to check through all the approvals and licenses obtained by the builder prior to starting construction work. Some of these include approved layout plan, environment clearance, as well as commencement certificate.

You also need to find out the status of the land – whether the builder owns the land or just has building rights over it. Also check the land-use zone – whether the construction site is in a government-approved residential area or in an industrial or commercial area. Ask for latest tax payment receipts on property as well as the building before buying it.

The title deeds as well as the purchase agreements are the two documents that need the maximum attention, where everything, especially the tiny writing needs careful scrutiny. Instead of being penny-wise and pound-foolish, it would be better to hire the services of a property lawyer to go through these paper-works to ensure that there are no hidden clauses that could put your hard-earned money into jeopardy. And do note that ‘No Objection Certificates’ do not represent legal approvals….

Be vigilant that the property isn’t pledged for some bank loan, in which case you will need a Release Certificate stating that the loan has been repaid. Ask for an Encumbrance certificate too to ensure the land is free from any litigation. You will also need to ensure that the entire layout has the approval of the local development cooperation body.

Aside from the legalities, ask for the total cost of your venture. This should include the basic cost plus other charges like internal/external development fee, parking/club fee, preferential location fee and service tax. All these elevate the final cost of the property.

After finalizing with all the documents and approvals, check with the banks financing the construction project as they are more likely to offer you lower loan rates. And finally, verify your builder’s credentials. Visit their completed and ongoing projects for an idea of what you are getting into.All the best!

All the best!

 

Different Colors to Paint the Rooms and their Significance

Favourite Homes Interiors

 

Believe it or not, but a subject known as color psychology actually exists and deals with the effect of various colors on the human psyche and behavior. Colors have been known to influence our moods and thoughts since ancient days; they affect people in different ways depending on their gender, age and ethnic background. Color psychology studies have shown that certain colors or group of colors elicit similar reactions from most people. They are a universal, non-verbal language that humans speak instinctively.

When it comes to decorating your home, you will need to choose your colors carefully, keeping in mind that colors affect the emotional well-being of you and your family in a profound way. They are a tool that can be used to leverage human behavior. For example, studies have shown that colors enhance the effectiveness of placebos in clinical trials with brightly colored red and orange pills being better stimulants.

While choosing colors for your home, forget about current trends and fashions as color trends come and go. It’s the people who will live in that home that’s going to make the house beautiful. Your choices should reflect the preferences and personalities of the people who are going to live in it to make it an emotionally healthy home. The trick to choosing the right color is by first considering the primary function of each room as some colors work better than others at promoting certain activities. You should then decide on a predominant color for the room with not more than three colors in each room or they might make the room look ‘busy’ or cluttered up. Colors have the power to affect the shape and size of a room as well as impact on the furnishings. They even have the power to change your mood from tranquility to rage! So when choosing room colors, work on the moods you want them to create.

According to psychologists, colors work in three basic ways – active, passive and neutral. Depending on your personal tastes and the rooms’ purpose, choose light colors where you want the rooms to look airy, larger and brighter; for a sophisticated warm look, go for dark colors which make large rooms appear more intimate.

Living room

A combination of warm tones like shades of reds, yellows, oranges as well as browns and beige work well in encouraging conversations and forging connections here.

Dining room

Reds and yellows raise the energy level and are great at stimulating appetites and conversation levels in formal dining rooms.

Bedroom

This room is primarily for relaxation and should include hues of calming and peaceful colors like green, blue or lavender. Red color is known to increase blood pressure, and breathing and heart rates and should be avoided here.

Green on the other hand is supposed to help with fertility, so a great color for the bedroom for young couples.

Kitchen

This is the nerve centre of the home where great meals are cooked and great memories are made. Green is the color of comfort and togetherness and is great in the kitchen. Bright and airy yellow also does the trick.

These basic guidelines should be enough to get you started on choosing what’s best for your family’s needs.

Documents that the Buyer Must Possess while Buying a Property

Documents for Buying a Property

 

Buying a property of your own can be one of the most exhilarating and gratifying experiences of a lifetime. Most people buy a home only once in their life and you wouldn’t want anything to go wrong with it. While choosing a home can be lots of fun, getting down to the nitty-gritty of the payment and change of name can sometimes turn into a nightmare – that is, if you don’t go through the ‘small writing’ carefully or if you don’t bother with asking for all the necessary documents to ensure everything is clear and aboveboard.

Paying for a property upfront and then waiting for it to be built, all the while paying rent for your current accommodation plus the EMIs on the property purchased, can get a tad inconvenient. Sometimes the builder may delay the project in which case, this gets worse; and there are times when some unscrupulous builders over-promise and then do not deliver the product! This is the story of many property buyers. All these factors can take the charm off buying the property. So when buying a home, go for property builders who have a reputation at stake and an impressive history to back them up –like ‘Favorite Homes’!

When buying a property, there is a list of documents that the buyer should posses; this list may vary from state to state, but some basic set of permissions and documents are essential and will be needed for applying for a home loan too. The following is a summarized list of these documents:

Deed of Sale

From this document you will get to know whether the seller owns the property being sold and whether he has the right to sell it and transfer ownership. It will also throw up any outstanding loans or litigation if any, on the property. You will need to check the original property deed too, to confirm that it’s in the name of the seller.

No Objection Certificates

These are required at various stages of construction and are a set of permissions from various departments including forest department, environment department, sewage department, storm water and drain department, traffic coordination department, airport authority, chief fire officer and pollution board, etc.

Approved Layout Planning

These need to be approved by the authorities responsible; in some rare cases, developers deviate from the plan and add extra floors or additional spaces not approved, which could lead to hassles and delay in delivery.

Commencement certificate

This certificate permits the builder to start construction work. Without this certificate, any construction is illegal.

Encumbrance Certificate

This can be obtained from the sub-registrar’s office and can throw up any pending legal or monetary liabilities from as far back as 30 years.

Purchase Agreement

You should scan this document very carefully to ensure the builder provides all that is offered in the project aside from payment terms, completion deadlines and default payment penalty; the agreement should also have a clause to transfer the common areas to the society so the seller has no further claim over it.

Occupancy certificate

This is issued by the local authorities and includes provision of water, electrical and sewage connections.

Remember to collect the latest tax receipts too – and this should cover a majority of the documents you need.

Comparison between Villas and Apartments

 

Making the decision to buy your own home is a humongous one and it doesn’t come easy. Because once you have made a decision, you need to follow it up with a plethora of homework on a variety of issues. The first thing you need to decide is whether to opt for an apartment or a villa. Then comes the location. This is followed by the budget and loans. Then come a myriad of other things to look out for. But the single most important factor through all this is choosing an experienced and reliable builder, with a reputation to match.
Continue reading “Comparison between Villas and Apartments”

Why we should own a Villament

 

The real estate industry is evolving in numerous ways, all for the betterment of mankind it would seem. Earlier people lived in independent homes, cottages, lodges and town houses that lined the city streets like multi-storied walls with gaping shapes representing its numerous doors and windows. Then came the bungalows, villas and apartments; and now we have a further entrant known as the ‘villament’. Just as the name suggests, a villament is an amalgamation of the good things of both the villa and the apartment.
Continue reading “Why we should own a Villament”