Vector investment concept in flat style

Look no further! East and West Tambaram real estate presents the best property investment

Underlining the fact that Tambaram is one of the top ten preferred locations to buy a home in Chennai, the area has been in the news recently for all of the right reasons. With many well established industrial enterprises and effective road connectivity, Tambaram is strategically positioned on the GST Road (Grand Southern Trunk) and serves as a midway to the IT and SEZ corridors. Furthermore, as is already well known, the GST road is regarded as one of the busiest National Highways connecting Chennai to Trichy besides linking the Chennai International Airport with Tambaram. All the important places in Chennai are linked via the GST road and its strategic significance is further enhanced by way of being a part of the Golden Quadrilateral National Highway Project.

Tambaram’s multi fold advantage

By the same token, Tambaram- divided into Tambaram East and West by the railway station, stands to be the biggest beneficiary of all this development and much of its success is due to its strategic location. What’s more, the Chennai International airport is located at Meenambakkam on GST Road directly connecting to Tambaram. By virtue of being located on the GST Road, it can be said that Tambaram has reaped a huge windfall for real estate investors.

The GST road connects to other parts of India via the NH-4 (National Highway 4) thereby linking Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore in the West. Furthermore, the NH-5 joins East in Bhubaneshwar and the GST Road connects Chennai with Trichy and with the NH-205 finally terminating at Mandapalle in Andhra Pradesh, one can begin to appreciate the impact of the GST road on Tambaram real estate prices.

The overall extended connectivity has led to increased residential prices in Tambaram East as well as Tambaram West. The raised guideline values along the GST road have further augmented the value of the properties here. Both, Tambaram East and West are densely populated and enjoy superb connectivity via the rail and road network.

Keeping in view the increased population, boost for tourism and the requirement for convenient access to recreational spots in Tambaram the Southern railway augmented the suburban train services to Kancheepuram by extending four EMU services on the Chennai Beach-Tambaram-Chengalpattu section.

Moreover, the Southern Railway made the Tambaram railway station a new terminal and owing to this superior connectivity it can be observed that this area has truly become a busy hotspot. What’s more, Tambaram serves as a town panchayat for the smaller areas adjoining East and West Tambaram with suburbs such as Mudichur, Mannivakam, Padappai adjoining West Tambaram and Selaiyur, Camp Road Madambakkam neighbouring Tambaram East.

Replete with Amenities

One can find many renowned schools, colleges, hospitals and a well-equipped civic and social infrastructure here. Restaurants, banks and shopping centres have mushroomed everywhere and there are over 10 super markets, 11 colleges and 15 hospitals in the vicinity. Besides, the presence of police stations, fire stations and the Air Force Station of the Indian Air Force have given the reassurance of a comfortable life to many families residing here.

Up and Coming

The proposed six lane highway and the upcoming two-way tracks projected between Chengalpet and Tindivanam will connect Tambaram to other important towns of Tamil Nadu and there is an upbeat optimism that there will be a further spurt in real estate prices.

With property prices going northwards, the trends in Tambaram have been very positive. In fact, Tambaram has seen an incremental real estate appreciation nearly as high as 37 per cent in the last one year and 22 per cent in the last two years. Currently there are about 35 new ongoing projects with nearly 81% of the projects having fully completed and the rest being under construction.

Aiming to pander to the working class, the price bracket of the flats here is typically within the price range of Rs 10 to 40 lakhs and rentals are usually to the tune of Rs10 to 14 per square feet depending on the project and flat furnishings. It is thought that Tambaram mostly has apartments that cover about 60% of the over-all residential occupancy and that the estimated residential apartment prices ranging between Rs.3500-4500 per sq. ft. and furnished properties demand anything in the range of Rs. 4500-5500 per sq. ft.

East or West- Tambaram is the best

There is however a difference in the property prices between West and East Tambaram and it can be found that East Tambaram usually commands a higher price value as compared to the West.This can probably be attributed to the lush greenery and overall serenity versus the commercial hustle bustle of West Tambaram.


List of best websites for your every need in and around Tambaram

It is not every day that you move cities or towns and it is not every day that you look for information pertaining the city or locality. Contradictorily, you get an offer to move to Chennai and to Tambaram in particular and you do not know what to expect out of the locality.  Now, take a deep breath, chill and relax yourself. There is nothing to worry about. Here is an exhaustive list of websites that give you information for everything around Tambaram, sitting comfortably on your couch.

Everything Tambaram

A comprehensive listing of everything in Tambaram is provided by Tambaram Online . A list of government offices with phone numbers, educational institutions, computer stores, restaurants with vegetarian and non-vegetarian food, addresses and phone numbers of property builders, call taxi numbers and news about Tambaram are all in this. It’s a one stop page for anything Tambaram.

Rail Information

Indian Railways has a beautiful website which gives you information about trains connecting every station in India.

Indian Rail Info  gives you complete information of trains plying between, from and out of Tambaram, if you plan to take the train.

There are other best options like Southern Railways website which in turn directs you to Indian Rail;

Metro and ProKerala that give you additional information.

Buses- Timings and availability.

Metro is a place where you can find the buses to and from Tambaram by Metropolitan Transport Corporation.

Bus Route Information System for Chennai City BRISC  provides similar information as well.

Red Bus offers online ticket bookings from Tambaram to any place within and outside the State by bus. You can use your mobile phone to book as well.

Places to Visit

Trip Advisor advises you on important places to visit in Tambaram.Here, it provides reviews about Skandasramam , a religious shrine.

Holiday IQ has a few places of mention in its website

OK Tata Bye Bye has decent listings, though not as comprehensive as others and Just Dial provides you with an equal measure of its share.

Blog on Tambaram

Want some more? Here is a blog “All About Tambaram“,which details every move of residents, happenings and the attractions in and around Tambaram. It is handy, first hand and is a reliable source of information for all newcomers and existing residents of Tambaram.

Movie Listings and Theatres

If you are a movie buff, here is Just Dial which gives you information about the movies currently showing in theaters in Tambaram.  Plus, each theater has a website as well.

A-Z websites

Just Dial , Sulekha and AskLaila are some of the sites just for anyone who needs to know about A-Z ofanything.Search for Tambaram and you are assured of getting your help in any way, right away.

Educational Institutions

Educational institutions are listed by Eduraft , Think Vidya which has now become Urbanpro , Vidya Balaji and others. They offer a list of classes for kids, ranging from extra curriculars like sports, music to academic enrichment as well.

Movers and Packers

Movers and Packers in Tambaram are listed in Just Dial , Yellow Pages of Sulekha , and other A-Z of Tambaram.

Government Services

Fair Price shops and ration shops information is detailed in government initiative WebPage. Passport details can be had from travel agents in Tambaram or from Our Passport Kendra.

Post office in Tambaram and Yellow Pages give  Tambaram Post Office information

If you are a government employee and want to know about your Employees Provident Fund status and want to file any grievance, claim some amount, EPFO website caters to the needs of 12 lakhs employees living around the Tambaram belt.

Property Builders and Listings

Property developers Ruby Builders are based in Tambaram and have developed quite a number of economical and luxury homes. 99 acres, Magic Bricks, Common Floor, OLX, Makaan are some of the property portals available to scour for a good home in Tambaram.


Hindu Mission Hospital is one of the best and oldest hospitals in Tambaram.There are Deepam Hospital, Christudas Hospital and Kasthuri Hospital which are quite well known and efficient in treating any kind of emergencies.

With the above list, it would be easy to navigate through any city or locality without any complaint. The above is but an exhaustive list meeting the day-to-day- requirements of any new resident to an area. Once you become a little familiar to the area, you would be forced to add in a few more that matches your needs.




Recent news have been flooded with reports of residential fires that have taken place in hi-tech residential buildings that were located in the most posh and upmarket areas of a key metropolitan city in India. The common factor among all those incidents was a gross negligence of fire safety standards and procedures.

Even today, after many such disasters it is common to see prospective customers enquiring with builders and real estate brokers about exterior amenities such as swimming pool and gymnasium facilities, with scant or no regard for probing about the fire safety system in the premises. A fire and the related safety measures are usually considered as a secondary feature, something that always happens somewhere else to someone else.

However, it is wise to remember that families in residential apartment buildings live close together, so if there’s a fire at a neighbour’s house, it does affect your home and your safety too. A small incident somewhere else has the potential to rapidly spread fire, heat and smoke throughout the entire building in a matter of a few minutes, thereby affecting the safety of all occupants. Many victims of fires die from smoke or toxic gases, not only from burns.

Beware- Be Aware
Fire safety is essentially a set of procedures of practices that lay down certain guidelines for reduction of destruction caused by fire. It encompasses measures that prevent the start of a fire as well as measures for limiting the fire after it has started.
Builders and architects nowadays plan for fire safety measures during the construction phases itself. Following this, there will be a printed set of guidelines that instructs the occupants of the building on fire safety drills.


Let us take a look at some fire safety tips that can reduce your risk and ensure the safety of everyone else around you.
Cooking is the primary cause of home fires and incidentally most fires in the home begin from there, so remember when you’re in the kitchen –

  • If you’ve kept something on the stove ensure that you never leave it unattended. As a thumb rule, never leave cooking unsupervised.
  • It is wise to place fire extinguishers in the kitchen and in the utility areas of your home. Besides, you should also learn how to use them.
  • Avoid wearing clothes with combustible fabrics and very tight fitting sleeves when cooking. Loose-fitting clothing with long, fluttering and sinuous designs especially the sleeves are a hazard.
  • If there is a fire because of oil or grease, remember to immediately shut off the main gas supply and smother the flames with a fire extinguisher. If you don’t have one, use a thick rug or pour sand or earth immediately on the open flame. Do not use water.
  • In case it is a small kitchen fire, you can cover the burning pan with a lid. Alternately, pour table salt or baking soda for smothering out the flame. Generally, it is better to keep the stove surface area free of remnant kitchen mess and built-up grease.
  • Keep dish towels, wooden spoons and plastic ladles away from the direct cooking area and stovetop.
  • If the pan has caught fire, don’t try to run out with it. Remember this has a greater potential of spreading the fire even further.

General Safety tips around the house
In case of a smoker in the house, do remember to extinguish the burning cigarette stick properly. Smoking is the leading cause of fire-related deaths.
Practise a fire safety drill with the entire family. Chalk out the exits of the house and make sure that every family member knows at least two ways out of each room. Practice the “Stop, Drop and Roll” technique with them.
There should be one person from the family who is responsible for infants and small children in case of emergencies. Warn children in advance about the dangers of inhaling smoke. Instruct them to “get low and go” in case of smoke in the house.
In case of fire in the building, use the stairs to get out. Avoid using the elevator. In the event you are stuck inside, ensure that you cover possible areas from where smoke might come in. It helps to know the building’s fire escape exits and commit them to memory.


Environmental concerns that concern everybody

Environmental concerns that concern everybody

There are so many glaring environmental issues faced by India today, it’s probably hard to single out just one as being the most serious or life-threatening. Starting from the air we breathe, the ground we walk on, the water we drink or the food we consume; there’s really no telling the start and end point of pollution hazards.

There has been active progress and addressable by NGO’s and governing bodies in order to improve the environmental mess, in fact it is thought that India has made the speediest progress in the world in addressing this concern. However there still remains a lot to be done and environmental issues pose serious health risks for mankind and livestock in India.

Pollution of Water

Estimates suggest that the average annual per capita water availability in India has declined by almost 70% over the last decade or so. Irregular monsoons and inadequate recharging of groundwater tables have led to many a problem. There is heavy dependence on the groundwater source as nearly 80-90% of drinking water in villages and 50-60% of water supply for urban areas is derived from it.

The existing groundwater resources are being subjugated and there’s insufficient or complete absence of access to fresh water resources. Existing lakes, ponds, reservoirs and rivers are subject to discharge of untreated sewage thereby creating a bigger issue of polluting the surface and ground water.

Sewage treatment plants that are present are not always functioning properly or in dire need for maintenance. Sewage or domestic waste water is pumped back into fresh water bodies and the vicious circle is further aggravated. Effluents leach into soil, rendering it polluted.

Industrial, chemical and agricultural waste water are the largest water pollutants. As industries increase, the consumption of water will also increase proportionally whereas the challenge of dealing with waste water remains intact. Recent reports suggest that over a hundred cities dump untreated sewage into the Ganga (Ganges River). The Ganga being one such case in point, it is common to find that across India industrial and human waste that is directly released in the water (which may later be used for human consumption). Washing of vehicles, clothes and animals is a common sight around rivers and ponds. The ecosystem around a polluted water body gets equally disturbed as does mankind.

In the air

Cited as one of the leading causes for premature deaths in India, air pollution levels have gained alarming proportions in recent times. World over, the deaths caused due to air pollution have increased fourfold in the last ten years or so. India and China are the two countries that top the charts for this pollution. WHO has ranked outdoor air pollution as being the 5th reason for mortality in India, contributing to over 6, 27,000 deaths.

These are not small numbers by any measure and it comes at a time when India is already grappling with the pressures of a burgeoning population. Current reports suggest that while on one hand the automobile sector is seeing tremendous growth in the country and on- road automobiles have increased by almost seven-fold, there are massive emission problems and causes for increased global warming attributed to it.

While vehicles cause enough air pollution, one cannot ignore the factories and industries that emit poisonous gases in the air. Rural household’s dependence on burning of fuel wood and biomass further contributes to a harmful air pollutant mix.

Garbage and Solid Waste disposal

The population in India is already exploding and if the numbers are anything to go by, there’s plenty more to come. Naturally, there is a huge amount of pressure on natural resources and it is no secret that a large part of the country’s population continues to live in abject poverty. However, the massive population has created another issue, that of waste generation.

Landfills are overflowing and it is common to see mountain sized piles of filth. In fact, nearly 50, 00, 00 people reside near these landfills in prime metros of India. What’s more, the waste generation in India is set to increase five times by the year 2047. Soon, India will be the largest producer of garbage and most probably the biggest refuse heap in the world.


While it may seem like a sorry state of affairs on the whole, there are many green initiatives being undertaken by the government to tackle these issues in a unique and non-toxic way. Perhaps the need of the hour is a far more aggressive environment conservation unanimity from every citizen.


Chennai-The preferred city

Chennai – There’s something for everyone here

Home to people from different ethnicities and religions, Chennai is considered a melting pot of many cultures and one can find a plethora of temples, churches and mosques that bear a mark of Chennai’s rich heritage. Architecture belonging to the colonial times can be found in the port area as well as in other places in Chennai such as the St. Mary’s Church in Fort St. George or the Pachaiyappa’s Hall which is based on the Athenium Temple of Theseus. Mahabalipuram- a neighbouring town of Chennai has ancient temples and rock carvings dating back to the 7th century Pallava kingdom.

Where it stands today

Chennai has a booming tourism industry with an influx of visiting foreign tourists and holds the merit of being one of the most visited cities in India. In fact, Lonely planet has listed Chennai in the top 10 cities to travel to for the year 2015.

The honour bestowed on the city seems totally justified as there has been ground-breaking development in terms of infrastructure and governance. Today the city is taking bolder and bigger steps towards urbanisation and it is truly heartening to see that the skyline is a beautiful convergence of the old with the new and that there’s even-handed balance of modernization and history.

Chennai- The preferred city

Recently ranked 9th in the list of the world’s best cosmopolitan cities, Chennai’s prospects are primed to go a few notches higher. The government authorities are pulling out all the stops to make the growth story bigger and better than ever before. Infrastructure is being given a big boost by introducing progressive services such as the monorail project, added incentives for promotion of industrial growth and the ambitious construction of flyovers in strategic places.

The city is being recognized for its invaluable worth and has featured in the news of late on account of the overall excellence in the standard of living of its citizens. Based on the “Location Ranking Survey” conducted by ECA International, Chennai was rated as having the highest quality of life among other cities in India. It pips ahead of the other three metros and Bangalore. What’s more, Chennai received the second highest rating in India in a worldwide quality of life survey conducted by Mercer in 2007 (New Delhi scored the highest).

The accolades just keep pouring in

Chennai boasts of being a leading commercial and industrial centre besides being home to all major educational, literary and economic centers. The city has long held on to the distinction of being referred to as ‘The Detroit of Asia’ for it’s proliferate automobile industry. The IT/ITES parks are home to some of the most renowned multinational companies of the world.

What’s more, the city boasts of a high number of expats with Chennai having the highest population just after Mumbai and Delhi. With the onslaught of a high number of people from world over, Chennai made way for yet another accolade- the 41st ranking of Chennai in the global top 100 city destinations in the year 2011. Nearly 3,174,500 tourists visited the cultural and heritage sites of Chennai and the nearby towns, contributing more than Rs 20,000 crore to the state economy. In comparison, domestic tourism brought in around Rs 5,500 crore.

The city boasts of a sound, state-of-the-art healthcare system and medical tourists from across the world come to Chennai for their treatments. In fact, medical tourism continues to remain a high grosser with this form of tourism outperforming every other.

Chennai has much variety on offer and it is a matter of pride that the city was placed 2nd, featuring as the best food city in the world by none other than National Geographic (Chennai was the only city from across India to feature in the list). Furthermore, the city features in the “52 places to go around the world” by The New York Times. In 2014’s annual Indian city survey, India Today ranked Chennai as the best city in India.

Through the looking glass

Chennai is the secondary financial hub in the country, after Mumbai and with a gross domestic product (GDP) of $69 billion Chennai is a pivotal financial and commercial hub. It ranks fifth in terms of overall GDP contribution in India. Combined with a strong industrial and IT populace, Chennai is the 31st-largest urban area in the world. Considered as the sixth-largest city in India and the fourth-most populous metropolitan area in the country, Chennai is poised to reach beyond the stars.





Choose right investment location to reap the best returns for your money

Remember the good old fable where the grasshopper sang all winter while the ant laboured away. Think of the moral behind that story, albeit you may find it a bit childish. Nonetheless, the lesson holds true for a lot of things in life, especially in reference to investment planning. When planning your investments it is always better to think in fast forward mode.

Assuming you are somewhere in your mid twenties or thirties, you need to assume the time in your life when you’re going to be fifty or sixty. What will your liabilities be then? What responsibilities will you have at that time? What health benefits should you plan for? Recreation and leisure, how much will that cost? Answer these questions and you’ll come to a solid ground on what your financial goal should be and how you need to plan for it.

Why invest in the first place?
The freedom of being financially independent is the one of the strongest reasons for anyone to consider in today’s time and age. If you’re among those who has just started saving money, consider it all the more pertinent to start saving now. The power of compounding is a very important wealth generation tool and it holds in good stead during times of contingencies.

Determine how much and how often you want to save. For some, investing small amounts once in a month can mean a lot and for some a stipulated quarterly or annual saving works best. Do consider the snowball effect- a method of saving in which small amounts gain in size and momentum and ultimately lead to exponential growth.

Let us explore some investment avenues that will throw a light on which investment vehicle to choose.

Stocks and Shares: When you have only a small amount to invest, risky investments can mean the possibility of losing all your money. It is often thought that shares and direct stock market investments are not just risky but also very oscillating by nature.

Mutual funds on the other hand provide a broad spectrum exposure and one can choose to go into high, low or medium risk categories. Track the record of the past few years and compare the gains made. Exercise diligence and discipline and reinvest the dividends and capital gains made and you will be pleasantly surprised by the amount you actually end up with.

ETF- Exchange Traded Funds: An exchange-traded fund is an investment fund that is easily traded on stock exchanges. ETF’s come in different categories and typically hold assets such as gold, stocks, commodities or bonds. This vehicle has become very popular of late because of their low costs, tax efficiency, and stock-like features. The downside of ETF’s is that they are subject to volatility in the stock market. Where a mutual fund is actively managed by a portfolio manager, the ETF’s is pretty much on its own.

Gold: The most popular and all-time favourite investment vehicle of Indians, gold never seems to lose its sheen. However, do remember that gold prices do correct themselves and it is prudent to maintain gold as an investment option for a limited period of time and park your remaining investments in another vehicle altogether.

Real Estate Investments: The good thing about investing in real estate is that the house can be rented or leased out, can be resold or kept as a nest egg for a rainy day. Whichever way you look at it, real estate seems to be the investment king. If you’ve got a house in a great location and fantastic project with good amenities you can be sure that the house will increase in capital value and give you good returns when you sell it.

There are many tax benefits that make real estate investments an attractive option. Especially in the case of working couples, applying for a joint home loan means eligibility for a higher loan amount. The benefits in a joint home loan are many, namely, the division takes place in the same proportion in which the asset is owned by each co-applicant, besides the tax benefits get divided among the co-applicants.

As a wise investor you should gauge the pros and cons and ensure due diligence before taking any financial decision.


Gold v/s Real-Estate – A difficult investment decision for the Indian retail investor

The traditional Indian’s investment routes are characteristically bi-directional, with preferences swaying towards either gold or real estate. The very mention of stocks brings up a feeling of hostility and mistrust, unarguably; because of the various stock market fluctuations and unit-linked investment scams. Usually thought of as risky and perhaps a tad inconsistent, this topic is best left for another time, another day.

Let us delve into the investment avenues of Gold and Real Estate, generally considered as safe and reliable options with a fair debate on the pros and cons of both.

To get an insight as to how much gold has influenced purchasing behavior among Indians let us take a sneak peek at the figures mentioned herein. The total value of gold in the Indian market is estimated to be roughly more than 30 lakh crores; an amount close to twice the foreign exchange held by the RBI.

Gold is purchased in various forms with the most common one being jewelry. Some investors also prefer to own this precious commodity in the form of gold coins. The rest of the camp prefer to hold an investment in ‘non-physical’ form such as Gold Exchange Traded Funds (these are units like a mutual fund which represent physical gold in paper or dematerialized form and are traded on the exchange like a single stock of a company).

Investors have options of investing in Land, Apartments or Commercial premises such as offices, ware-houses etc. Land is a strategic portfolio and usually involves various legal and tax implications. The most common preference has been an apartment for personal consumption or as an additional home. The key decisions that need to be made are knowing to buy a house / land at the right time and the right price.

Having understood on how to go about making these investments, we shall now explore the market and risk factors on each of them to help make the right decision.

Income Generation
Property has the potential to generate income by renting and leasing it out to prospective buyers. This can be accounted as a monthly cash-flow on a year-to-year basis (the minimum lease period in India is close to 13 months) which could prove as a valuable hedge against property borrowings or any personal hedging needs of the investor. Gold ETF investors, on the other hand, stand to benefit marginally in terms of dividends announced on the ETF’s. Other forms of gold investment generate no income when retained.

Gold can be bought in quantities as per the investor’s budget with ease and can also be liquefied quickly, as per investors day, time and situational convenience. On the other hand, a ‘real-estate’ investment is often required (and advised) to be held for a minimum ‘gestation’ period to enable them to appreciate favorably. Liquidity options are tedious to exercise in this case. Thus, Gold wins over in terms of liquidity which is a key factor for investors who are looking to exercise this option over a short period of time.

Real-estate being a ‘fixed’ sort of investment is usually considered highly ’un-portable’ compared to gold, which can be easily traded in local or other regional markets within India.

Collateral Benefits
Real estate scored higher in this area offering investor benefits in the form of mortgages and leases. Having said this, retail investors could elect to opt out of this as they may not want to risk their property taken up by the bank if they are unable to pay their dues. Gold investors can also obtain gold loans from the banks (and even their neighborhood pawn shops) for roughly around 50-70% of the value pledged.

Time Benefits
Gold is considered as an excellent short-term gainer. Historically, gold has appreciated the most between 1999 and 2011 which led the common investor to believe there will be even more appreciation yoy (year on year). However, as witnessed in the past few years, gold prices do correct themselves once in a while. The golden truth, hence, is to maintain gold as an investment option for a limited period of time and retain a real-estate investment of periods exceeding (at-least) 3 years.

Tax benefits
A sizable amount of tax can be saved annually on different types of real-estates owned. For e.g. for a self-occupied property, the investor can claim the interest paid on the borrowed capital under section 24, subject to some conditions. Gold provides very little tax benefit or no benefit at all.

Nonetheless, Gold has proved itself to be the perfect hedge for inflation over a short-term. But to look at it as a hedge avenue, Indians are yet to consider this market actively as the purchases continue to be dominated by jeweler. Gold only beats inflation. It fares poorly when compared to real estate when compared on the basis of real inflation adjusted returns. Investing in gold over a longer period of time would mean a loss on the opportunity cost. Thus, any serious investor is advised to have a certain percentage of investments in gold to hedge inflation and allot a larger percent to real estate or property on account of durability and value-for-money.


Home security systems: Technology that keeps your family safe

Home security systems To Keep Your family Safe

Paranoid or not, your home and family are among the first things you should secure against a host of adversaries. Today, it is not new to hear of thefts that have taken place using cutting edge technology and modern gadgets. In fact, there are examples of thieves using computers to hack into the mainframes of digitally enabled homes. In this kind of a scenario it is best to stay two steps ahead in ensuring absolute safety of your kith and kin.

You don’t need to be a tech-savvy person to understand the know-how’s of home surveillance and there are some things that you can try out for yourself. However, do engage the services of a professional security expert if you fall under the bracket of VVIP.

Chalk out what you need first

Before you begin purchasing expensive gadgetry or the famously hi-tech night vision cameras, you should begin to understand the level of security that you actually need. If you require a bare minimum of defence, the good old bare-fanged dog will do, however, if there are more family members or a tendency to store valuables in the house, it is advisable to add a few more layers of security.

A state-of-the-art home alarm system usually comprises of strategically installed window transmitters, CCTV cameras and motion sensors. Do remember that relying only on motion sensors will not be effective as the alarm will sound off after intruders have entered the premises. In many cases, there have been false alarms caused by motion sensors as the alarm sounds off each time a small animal passes by.

Do consider door and window transmitters that immediately sound off an alarm siren in case of a break-in. Webcams that have been installed near the entry-exit points of the house are also good locations for surveillance. However, the drawback with a plain-vanilla CCTV webcam system is that you may not be able to secure the house in case you’re away or if you spot a burglar in action. In this case, it is better to upgrade to a cell phone activated camera system. So, even if you’re thousands of miles away from home, the cellular-based alarm systems will signal for help over a secure cellular network. Additionally, it is also recommended to check out the latest doorbells that come equipped with a hidden camera.

Reports suggest that intruders rarely break in through the front door or windows at the front of a house, more so they will never leave through the same window or door again, so it makes sense to install cameras and sensors in the rear side rooms of the house as well. Do bear in mind that they are more likely to rummage through every room of the house, more so the master bedroom, so it is only logical to consider security measures comprehensively.

Nowadays, security systems come with an additional benefit of wireless smoke detectors. These can be considered if you reside in a house with multiple floor levels, considering that you may minimally need at least one smoke detector on each floor. Additionally, you may need to install one detector in each bedroom and each corridor area. The automatic alarm systems usually come equipped with a siren that sounds off in case of a fire and a pre-programmed system that notifies the fire department in case of an emergency.

To wire or not to wire

If you belong to the old school of thought that considered a concealed, solid wiring system as foolproof, here are a few reasons that may force you to rethink this adage. In the United States, roughly about 25 percent of burglars reported cutting telephone or alarm wires before they broke into a home. About 30 percent of all burglaries were committed through an open/ unlocked window or door and nearly 66 percent of all burglaries were residential (home) break-ins. What’s even scarier is that home intrusions are committed every 13 seconds.

Considering these factors, it is better to install a wireless system that does not require any wiring and complicated set-ups. An easier alternative is to set up a wireless security system that won’t be snapped off and won’t require you to drill holes in the walls. Besides, they come with easy manuals and videos that assist in setting up the system. You may not even require spending heavy installation fees or complicated programming set-ups.


Buy your home and get payback in tax benefits

There is a valid reason for the immense popularity of home loans today- the loans facilitate you to not only fulfil your basic requirement of getting a home but additionally also avail of tax rebates on it. Taking a home loan automatically makes a person eligible for tax deductions under Section 80C and Section 24 of the Income tax regulations, so it’s a good saving whichever way you look at it. A dual advantage of sorts.
Here’s a look at some of the ways you can squeeze the most out of your home loan-

Rebates from the home loan

Purchasing a home is a momentous decision, however, it is fraught with niggling nuances and heavy down payments. Once you have crossed the initial hurdle of putting together the down payment, you will need to consider many other factors such as the lender, floating rate versus fixed rate, tenure and so on.

It is better to take guidance from trusted acquaintances or seek legal assistance regarding these matters. Those who have previously taken a home loan can be trusted to suggest a good lender and the recommended repayment tenure. Once these initial details are sorted out, you must ensure that the home you have planned to purchase comes from a reputed builder who delivers timely projects (deviation from this basic rule and you can stand to lose out considerably). Interest deductions are liable to be claimed starting from the year in which construction completes. So it’s best to choose your builder with utmost care.

There have been many instances of projects getting delayed and the brunt of this delay is borne by the end user; thankfully there are provisions to somewhat protect customers from this kind of a situation. You qualify for tax deductions for under construction properties, besides claiming deductions on interest for the financial years before completion of construction. You can sum up the entire pre-construction interest and claim it in five equal installments. However, there are ceiling limits on the deductions you can claim.

Another caveat here is that if you sell the house within five years of having taken possession, the deductions that you may have claimed on the principal amounts are reversed. The amount is treated as income in the year of sale and taxed according to the income accrued.

Existing home loan borrowers can claim deduction on the loan’s interest in every financial year up to a maximum amount of Rs. 2, 00,000. So, if the annual interest repayment is lesser than this amount, the deductions are limited to your annual interest.

At this juncture, it is important to understand that the monthly repayment installments comprises of two elements – the principal amount and the interest amount. Principal amount repayment in the EMI qualifies for deduction under Section 80C and the amounts paid towards stamp duty, registration and other expenses which are required for transfer of the house to the owner also qualify for tax exemption. The preconditions being that you must be a home owner on the said property and a borrower in the loan. There are ceiling limits to the amount of deductions you can claim on the collective amount of these payments.

Claiming deductions from the home loan in joint names

Many working couples find this to be a convenient option when applying for a joint home loan. However, the prerequisite clearly states that the house has to be purchased jointly and the house should be in their joint names. Secondly, the share of each applicant and owner must be clearly mentioned without any discrepancies in the percentage ownerships of the co-owners.

There are other benefits in a joint home loan, namely, the division takes place in the same proportion in which the asset is owned by each co-applicant, besides the tax benefits get divided among the co-applicants. The individual co-applicant is eligible for a maximum tax rebate of approximately Rs.1, 50, 000 in case of principal repayments. Even in case of the interest element the deductions are approximately Rs. 2 lakh.

Thrifty planning on the part of the joint owners will ensure that the applicants
enjoy maximum tax benefits and nothing in the repayment amounts is unduly lost. Additionally, do remember that applying for a home loan jointly also means that you are eligible for a higher loan amount. Besides, in some cases, registration fees are reduced if the property is owned by women either individually or jointly.

As a wise home buyer you should gauge the pros and cons and ensure due diligence before taking any financial decision.


What women home buyers should look for?

Your home will be your domain. Take a wise decision while buying your first one!

Its tough enough being a woman and dealing with all the feminine issues that are pelted by the world constantly. Add to that home buying hassles and you have quite a handful to deal with, isn’t it?

Our guide below will serve to steer you through the points that you must keep in mind before you can start off on the tedious yet exciting journey of owning your own home.

Taking a home loan? No worries, take it head on

All you independent, career oriented women who’ve zeroed in on a home and are planning for a home loan, here’s one big reason in big bold letters- You are eligible for ‘additional’ interest benefits. These benefits are specially extended to those belonging to the fairer gender.
Leading financial institutions and lenders have come up with schemes where women get the benefit of reduced interest rates as compared to the ongoing applicable interest rates of a home loan. It would be a good idea to enquire with different banks and compare their rates at the end of the day. Do remember that this is being done to promote ownership of property by women.

Budget your expenses and factor in the upfront payments

Women by nature are a thoughtful and more organised breed. So it would be hardly surprising that most women may have pre-planned their expenses and outgoings months in advance of taking a loan. However, do remember that down payments are usually a considerable amount of money and it may exceed your budgeted amount. Along with the down payment, there will be additional expenses such as government duties, electricity and water connection charges, stamp duty, registration or transfer fees, home insurance charges, service tax and other taxes too. Do bear in mind that these expenses may be nearly 6-7% of an additional cost on the total cost of the home.

Check the security features in advance

There’s nothing like being forewarned, especially if you are a single woman and are most likely to reside alone in the house. In today’s scenario it is imperative that you must consider your safety and security as prime aspects before finalising any project.

Smartphone enabled homes with built-in security features, CCTV cameras and round the clock security are just some of the things to watch out for. Remember to check the neighbourhood for any unsavoury activities and do keep a tab on the builders’ charges for all these safety features.

Don’t let the EMI’s catch you unawares

Grocery bills, daily expenses, utility bills, personal incidentals and a host of other things- these are all the components of regular monthly outgoings. Now you will be adding to this the additional load of a monthly instalment. If it still sounds good then perhaps it’s a good idea to go full steam ahead.

Chart out your instalments and the how’s and where’s associated with it. Think hard if you can really afford it. It is also vital that you must consider unforeseen, out of pocket expenses that may just crop up anytime.

Determine your loan eligibility by utilising the online loan eligibility calculator and understand the exact amount that you end up paying as instalment. Usually, your lender will share the details in advance, so you can plan for resources accordingly.

The thumb rule, though it differs from person to person, is that you must set aside about 60% of our income towards personal expenses and the rest should be allotted to payment of the instalment.

It’s a great idea to own your own home; in a way, it’s like marking your own territory. However, your home is not going to be your only financial anchor in life ahead, you will and should have other investments that will secure your future and support you in your sunset years.

While looking around for your first home, ensure that you don’t necessarily go in for the largest or the most posh project, rather opt for something which will appreciate nicely over the years and give you a handsome return should you ever sell.

1 2