Over 250 stuck housing projects get Rs 24,151-crore funding support

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An alternate investment fund (AIF) backed by the government, set up in late 2019 to extend last-mile funding to complete stuck housing projects, has sanctioned Rs 24,151 crore for 252 projects, according to the finance ministry data. This will enable the completion of 147,378 homes across the country.

The fund, set up under the Special Window for Affordable and Mid Income Housing (SWAMIH), has granted final approval to investments of Rs 10,992 crore in 111 projects, while preliminary nod was given to 141 projects entailing investments of Rs 13,159 crore. The total cost of the 252 projects, including investments by the private developers, stands at Rs 64,536 crore.

Sources told FE that some of the projects that have received final approval for funds are Highland Park (Ansal Housing) in Gurgaon; Naman Premier (Naman Group) in Mumbai’s Andheri (East); Upper Thane project (Lodha Developers); Primera (Ramprastha Group) in Gurgaon; Asha Bahadurgarh (Essel) in the National Capital Region; Mantri Serenity (Mantri Developers) in Bengaluru; Lake Grove (TDI) in Sonepat; and Vedantam Minaret (Magnus) in Delhi’s Indirapuram.

“Final clearance for funding to 12 projects, with investment of over Rs 1,100 crore, has been accorded in the past three months,” one of the sources said, adding that the fund has been a “great help to homebuyers, who were suffering due to stuck projects”.

The SWAMIH fund has already enabled the completion of more than 4,000 housing units over the past one year. The finance ministry expects at least 10,000 houses to see completion each year for three to four years.

The projects being supported are spread across a broad mix of markets, including metros and Tier- 2 locations like Karnal, Panipat, Lucknow, Surat, Dehradun, Kota, Nagpur, Jaipur, Nashik, Vizag and Chandigarh.

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman had in May 2021 virtually handed over possession to 640 homebuyers after their stuck residential project, Rivali Park in suburban Mumbai, was completed. It was the first housing project to have received support from the SWAMIH fund.

In December 2021, the fund saw another success story with the completion of the first phase of the Oxirich Sunskriti II project in Bhiwadi, Rajasthan. Suresh Kozhikote, managing director at SBICAP Ventures, which has been entrusted by the government to manage this AIF, handed over keys to the homebuyers.

On Monday, the second phase of Panchsheel Greens 2 in Greater Noida was completed, thanks to funding by the AIF. Ashwini Kumar Tewari, managing director (international banking, tech & subsidiaries) at SBI and Kozhikote handed over keys to homebuyers.

The SWAMIH fund raised Rs 10,530 crore from 14 investors, including LIC, HDFC and SBI, when it declared its first close in December 2019. The plan was to have a Rs 25,000 crore fund, with contribution from the government and other investors.

The government had pledged Rs 10,000 crore for this purpose to kick-start the investment cycle in residential projects and deliver homes to people affected by the double whammy of undelivered houses and regular repayment of home loans. It was also supposed to boost private consumption once houses are delivered.

According to an industry estimate in late 2019, as many as 4.58 lakh housing units were facing delayed delivery across 1,509 stalled projects.