A growing number of middle class buyers living in urban areas of Pakistan such as Lahore are beginning to demand better facilities in new communities, forcing developers to compete on the quality of the build as well as the price.
According to real estate developers, they are now having to think about factors such as improving architecture, as well as providing lifestyle facilities. The Express Tribune reports that there is an increasing trend for complete communities to be built by one development company, and people now expect these developments to come with facilities which would once have been considered to be luxuries, included as standard.
Nowadays purchasers want cinemas, community centers, hospitals, parks, and golf clubs nearby, so they don’t need to commute. Developments incorporating such facilities are selling well in comparison with those that don’t. These types of developments are something of a departure from the way housing developments used to be built, as they used to pay scant regard towards providing any sort of facilities beyond basic housing. The trend began to take hold in the 1990’s, when military owned property began to incorporate a few extra amenities.
It might even seem strange that such developments are catching on so quickly as Pakistan has a housing shortage estimated to be around 8 million units, and even worse this number increases by 7.5% annually. Major cities are seeing their populations increase substantially, and some, like Lahore could even see their population double over the next decade or so. Another change is that families are no longer choosing to live together in large units, and younger family members are increasingly choosing to purchase their own homes.
This has meant real estate is becoming more important to the economy in Pakistan, and it already provides employment for more than 5% of the population. However the industry is being held back by a lack of financing, prompting developers to begin offering their own finance schemes to buyers.