NRIs Investing in Real Estate but Unable to Protect their Properties

India tops the list of countries in remittance flow with most of the NRIs sending billions of dollars to India. A major portion of NRIs invests are in real estate back home, but they are unable to protect their properties due to long absences.

It is estimated that about 25 million NRIs are living in 130 countries. According to a World Bank report on Migration and Development Brief, NRIs have remitted US$52 billion in 2008.

Housing finance companies and banks providing home loans to NRI in Dubai state that there has been increase in demand for residential property across Indian cities. They claim that there is demand for properties in tier II cities like Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Mangalore and Mysore. It is estimated that there are about 5 million Indians in six Arab Gulf Cooperation Council (AGCC) countries. According to a survey by India Property Show in Qatar, there is a huge demand for apartments and developed plots in Chennai, Bangalore and Hyderabad.

Though most of the NRIs are investing in Properties in India, they are very much concerned about the protection of their properties in India. NRIs are unable to protect their properties due to their long absence and lack of awareness of laws in India.

The Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs is flooded with NRIs complaints of real estate deals. Many complaints are coming from major real estate markets like Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, AP, Kerala and Punjab. NRIs are complaining mainly on forcible occupation or encroachment, dispute relating to inheritance and frauds by real estate developers.