Changing lifestyles due to work from home (WFH) has led young professionals to rent homes in suburbs that are more spacious and greener but don’t burn a hole in the pocket. With most offices still shut, many millennials are also relocating to their hometowns, thereby saving rent and spending more time with family.
Data from NoBroker, a brokerage free online property platform, suggests that as the second and more virulent wave of infections adversely impacted movement, a lot of millennial office-goers chose to move to more affordable and spacious locations — either non-metro hometowns or city suburbs.
The platform has a cumulative customer base of 1.25 crore customers across Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Pune and Delhi-NCR. NoBroker CEO Amit Agarwal explains that generally tenant movement is of two types — intercity and intracity.
“What we check is that when tenants move out, are they moving from metro-to-metro or metro-to-non-metro. We observed that in early-2021, the movement from metro to non-metro was one-third. But in June, around two-thirds of intercity movement is towards non-metros coinciding with people shifting to their hometowns,” he added.
There are two types of tenants, one who decide to stay put at a location and the second are those who decide to move back home, Agarwal pointed out.
A significant number of IT-ITeS professionals are working from home with majority of offices being closed.
They moved back to be with families and also saved on rent. Such professionals constitute a majority of tenants who are moving back to non-metros, he said.
In the intra-city category, around 20% of overall tenants were opting for suburbs in early 2021, but in the last 30-45 days, around 40% of intra-city movement is towards outskirts. “People are looking for larger living space, better amenities, less crowd and cheaper rents, which is all available in peripheries. This is prominent in Bengaluru, Delhi and Hyderabad. People anticipate that Covid would continue for some time and many are altering their lifestyle choices. Besides, millennial families living on rent also faced space constraints. In many cases parents are also living with the couple,” he added.
Emphasising that distance is a major determining factor with regard to choice of relocation, Agarwal said major movements from Mumbai have been towards Nagpur and Jaipur while from Delhi, the chosen places are Meerut and Lucknow. Tenants from Hyderabad and Chennai moved towards Pondicherry, Coimbatore and Madurai.
Maximum movement from Bengaluru has been to Patna and Mysore. About 70% of this movement have been among IT-ITeS sector millennial employees.
Another positive for tenants is that rents have not firmed up as many moved back to their hometowns or opted for cheaper locations in suburbs, thereby creating vacancy. Besides, lack of business is also pinching landlords. Opposition to bachelors has come down in many cases. Now they offer painting, cleaning, pest control and disinfect the house before a tenant moves in.