Are Indian homebuyers looking for a furnished home? Apparently No!

As per Square Yards data, in spite of the obvious perks of a furnished home, only 10% of home buyers searched for these units across top cities during the April-June quarter, On the other hand,  81% of the home buyers in Gurugram looked for semi-furnished units and more than 70% online searches in Hyderabad accounted for unfurnished homes. Semi-furnished and unfurnished units seem to be reigning the search trends, but for the time being, furnished units seem to have taken a back seat.   

Exponential growth of the real estate sector in the last few years has widened the scope of options available to home buyers. Furnished homes were expected to become a common preference for new-age home buyers given the hassle-free shifting and stay facilities that would come with such a unit. However, the category did not really pick up and seems to have attracted only a niche segment of buyers over the years.  As per Square Yards research, online property search trends for the April-June period bring forth this trend. Let’s delve in for more!

Furnished homes yet to be optimized from home buyers per se

Barring a niche segment of buyers, the idea of opting for a furnished home unit has never been too appealing to prospective home buyers. Despite offering plenty of amenities, these units, no doubt, prove to be a little heavy on pocket and lacks the option of customization. Only about 5-10% demand was recorded for furnished homes in cities such as MMR, Pune, and Noida and Gurugram in Q2, 2021, approbating the factors mentioned above.

Also, with more home buyers keen on reflecting their homes as an extension of their soul, owning a house with pre-conceived designs and structure is not a preferred choice anymore. The new age home buyer seems to be a little more inclined towards customized settings for their homes in accordance to match their unique taste and style, as opposed to  the uniform, similar looking furnished apartments widely provided by the developers in top cities. Therefore, for the time being, furnished units seem to be the ideal choice only for those buyers who do not mind spending extra in order to skip the ordeal of setting up the house from scratch.

Are Semi-furnished homes the new trend?

Even though a major chunk of the online searches in the top cities were concentrated in the semi-furnished property segment, the category is still not the most preferred for home buyers as 50% of property seekers still looked for an unfurnished unit. However, the semi-furnished housing segment is definitely seeing a surge in demand, especially in cities driven by a growing young workforce. For instance, a whopping 81% of home buyers in Gurugram searched for semi-furnished properties and around 60% of home buyers opted the same in Noida and Bengaluru. Thus, it is quite evident that the semi-furnished segment might ace up more demand in the upcoming quarters.

Furnished or Unfurnished homes and the choice in-between

As per Square Yards data, 72% of people in Hyderabad looked for an unfurnished property during the Apr-June 2021 period. Hyderabad was not the only city to register a preference for unfurnished units. Similar trends were also observed in MMR and Pune recording a demand of 61% each for unfurnished homes. This nudges one to mull on the trend more deliberately.

The surge in demand for unfurnished homes can be attributed to the exorbitant prices attached to the well-furnished and semi-furnished apartments especially in MMR and Pune. Whereas for Hyderabad, it can be due to the prevailing tendency of home buyers looking for housing property as an investment avenue than for end-use.

Also, many buyers may tend to defer the buying of semi-furnished or furnished homes due to a lack of funds or for lack of desirable choices in the market. However, as mentioned above, cities such as  Gurugram, Noida and Bengaluru,-being home to a major chunk of mid-age growing working professionals having a relatively higher spending capacity, displayed a growing preference for semi-furnished homes. This trend is expected to prevail in the market for upcoming quarters as well.

Thus, there seems to be a clear tussle between unfurnished and semi-furnished housing units amongst prospective homebuyers across top cities. Demand for furnished homes is expected to remain muted in the coming quarters as well.

What do you think will be the most preferred furnishing status for the upcoming quarters? Do let us know in the comment section below.

Sifa Singh Sifa loves digging deep into datasets, churning out trends, and weaving stories around them. She is a firm believer that reliable and real-time data-driven stories have the power to change the world by bringing forward insights and solutions which can guide better decisions at all levels. Being a proponent of sustainable actions, irrespective of the domain, she aspires to include ESG in all her pursuits.
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