Be it Karachi, Lahore or Islamabad, Defence Housing Authority remains the most preferred location among property investors. The popularity of DHA is based on the locality’s consistent performance delivered in the last few decades. In addition to offering a community lifestyle that was previously unknown to people in Pakistan, DHA has maintained a transparent property purchase and sale system. Jawad Aslam Khan from Al Qamar Estate Agency Lahore, is of the view that because “DHA is patwari-free property investment zone” people find it “a secure, hassle-free and promising investment option.”
Zameen.com has been keen on recording and analysing the performance of DHA precisely because the locality interests almost all local and overseas investors. The expert deployed at Zameen.com, the most happening property portal of Pakistan, have prepared a comparative report on performance of 1 kanal houses in DHA Karachi and Lahore during second quarter of 2013. It is very interesting to note that many estate agents and realtors stress on the rising demand and value of property in Lahore and Islamabad but they ignore to mention how well the houses in DHA Karachi do in terms of property rates and rental yields.
According to data maintained by Zameen.com, the value of 10 marla and 1 kanal houses in Karachi is almost double the rates of similar property in Lahore. As of June 2013, the average sale price of a 10 marla house in DHA Lahore was Rs. 15,704,044 while in Karachi it was almost double with Rs. 28,400,000. Similar is the case for bigger houses as well as commercial and residential plots. It is also true that property rates in DHA Karachi are much stable and the market manages to sustain the prevailing economic and political pressure.
The property experts at Zameen.com also note that, during the first 2 quarters of 2013, every time the demand and value of 10 marla houses in DHA Karachi went up, rate of 1 kanal houses dropped and vice versa. In case of DHA Lahore, the pre election months witnessed slow activity and thus a slight dip in sale price of 1 kanal houses. During Q2, 2013, the average sale price of 1 kanal house in DHA Karachi increased 10.4% while the price hike recorded for houses of the same size in DHA Lahore was 18%.
Although Q2, 2013 started off slowly for DHA Karachi but the market picked up after elections and May became the best performing month of 2013’s first half. In this month, the average sale price of 10 marla house in DHA Karachi reached H1’s highest value of Rs 30 million. The value of 1 kanal house in DHA Karachi also increased 14.6% in May and also crossed the threshold of Rs. 46 million. Similar situation was witnessed in DHA Lahore where sale price of 1 kanal and 10 marla house increased 6% and 8.8% respectively during the said month.
While preparing this report, real estate analysts at Zameen.com noted that everything that goes on in Pakistan directly or indirectly affects the real estate sector and investors’ attitude. In June, which was the month of budget and hence the month of new taxation and thus rising inflation, the property rates of 10 marla houses in DHA Karachi and Lahore dropped once again. Although many property agents believe that the new taxes will not hamper the real estate market in the longer run yet the investors took a break in June 2013 to figure out how the budget 2013-14 will treat the property sector.
On the other hand, 1 kanal houses in DHA Lahore and Karachi appeared somewhat recession proof and recorded a noticeable price hike of 11% and 4% respectively in June, 2013. The overall analysis of Q2 2013 shows a very healthy performance of 1 kanal houses in DHA Lahore and Karachi. For Lahore, sale price of these houses increased 18% during this quarter and crossed the mark of Rs. 32.5 million. Average sale price of similar houses in DHA Karachi rose 10.4% and touched the threshold of Rs. 45 million.
With Ramadan and Eid approaching, many overseas Pakistanis are heading back home and they always make sure that their annual savings are invested in the housing and commercial market that promises them a secure investment that augments on a predictable pattern. Real estate agents operating in DHA Karachi and Lahore do anticipate another rush in the market in Q3 2013 where the sale price of plots and constructed property in the locality will respond to the increasing demand and rise accordingly.