A Home Loan: 4 Things to Consider

It’s a dream come true to own the home you have always wanted. As a prospective home buyer, you think about two things: a pretty home and a not-so-pretty, usually inevitable home loan. Qualifying for a mortgage is most important. A lender must assess your ability to repay the loan, which is determined primarily on the basis of your earnings, expenses, savings, work profile, financial capability, and repayment history of any loans and other debt. Here are 4 important tips to check before you go for a home loan:

1. Check Your Credit Score: Your credit score helps determine how easy it will be to get a home loan. The score you receive depends on how frequently you pay your EMIs and credit card dues. In simple terms, your credit report (CIR), which contains your credit score, is the history of your borrowings from various institutions, such as banks or non-bank financial companies (NBFCs) or housing finance companies (HFCs). A trusted credit bureau prepares and maintains your credit records and shares it with the banks/lenders whenever an enquiry is made by the loan provider. The higher the credit score, the higher the chances of the loan getting approved. And also once can expect the best rate of interest on the home loan as a bonus. Ensure you check your credit score at least six months, preferably 12 months, before you plan to buy a home.

2. You need to determine your budget for buying a home, how much money you can use for a down payment, and how much of a home loan you will need. As a rule, you can get 80% of the value of the property as a home loan if your income is sufficient. You must identify the EMI range that you are comfortable with in order to decide on the loan tenure. You can play around with various options in helping you here using online EMI calculators. You can consider adding your parents or spouse as co-borrowers if your income isn’t sufficient.

3. Home Loan Document Requirements: Before you proceed with a home loan application, it is necessary to know the documentation that is required and ensure that it is in place before you approach a bank or housing finance company. You will need the following documents:

• Income Tax Returns or Form 16 for past 2-3 years make sure all taxes are filed
• PAN Card – Verifying the validity of the PAN will be done by the lender
• Aadhar Card – the bank would also do an Aadhaar verification to verify your identity
• Bank Statements for past 6-12 months for a bank account where your income and expenses reflect. Make sure you maintain a reasonable balance in this account over past 6 months.
• Last 3 Months Salary Slips if you are salaried
• Application Form with Photograph Duly Signed

4. Choose the right banks and lenders: Avoid applying to many lenders at the same time, as many credit inquiries can negatively impact your credit score. Select the banks or housing finance companies where you have good relations and the most important thing is to be in touch with the institution who already approved the property you intend to buy. Understand the eligibility criteria of such lenders in terms of the cutoff for credit score and the loan scheme (processing fees, the rate of interest etc.). Considering all of the above factors will help you prepare for your home loan and increase your chances of receiving a swift approval. If you’re considering co-borrowers, make sure you tell them to verify their credit score and maintain their documentation.

Basics on Property Tax

Property is a massive phrase that encompasses real estate, such as buildings and the land that surrounds them, as well as stores, flats, and other structures. This tax is distinct from the tax that falls under the purview of the Income Tax Act. The income earned from such owned property is only taxed under the Income Tax Act, not the property itself. Let’s not get mixed up about two taxes because they are completely different.

Property tax is a yearly sum paid by the property/land owner to the local governing body or Municipal Corporation. The following are examples of ‘property’ that may be subject to property tax liability:

• Residential House – Self-Occupied/Let Out
• Office or factory building
• Warehouses
Flats/Apartments
• Commercial establishments/shops

In India, who is responsible for collecting Property Tax?

As previously said, the Municipality of any given region is the one who is entitled to assess, impose, and collect the property tax on an annual or semi-annual basis.

What is the foundation for property tax calculation?

Property taxes in India are calculated on the basis of ‘Annual Value.’ After determining the area, construction, property size, kind of building, and other relevant parameters, this annual value is estimated. As a result, the value varies from property to property. Lighting, drainage, and water taxes are all included in the property tax. Let out property and self-occupied property are the two primary categories under which it is calculated.

Allowable Deductions while estimating Property Tax

Deductions allowed for calculating property taxes Interest on a loan used to build, purchase, or repair the property

For repairs and upkeep of the property, a deduction of up to 30% is allowed.

The maximum interest payable is Rs.1,50,000 (if the loan is obtained on or after April 1, 1999) and Rs.30,000 (if the loan is taken before April 1, 1999). (if loan taken is after 1st April,1999)

Exemptions from Property Tax

The following properties are not subject to the Indian Property Tax: –

• The Central Government owns a number of properties.
• Vacant property of a certain type, such as a building or a block of land;
• Religious places of worship, philanthropic institutions, educational institutions,   historical monuments, cremation grounds/graveyards, trade union offices, free   recreational buildings, and so on.
• Unauthorized structures that are not registered with the municipality.

6 Vastu Tips for your Home

Buying a home is a major investment that requires a lot of dedicated research and financial input. It is a venture where you want to ensure that everything goes just right and you go all out to achieve it.

The principles of Vastu Shastra is an important feature that you will want to include into your new home. Even the younger generation understands the importance of this discipline and its significance in maintaining peace, positivity and prosperity in a home. For some, inculcating Vastu is a matter of traditional beliefs, while for others it’s a mandatory practice.

What is Vastu Shastra?

Vastu Shastra is an ancient traditional Indian system of architecture that deals with the basic principles of design, measurements and space arrangements. Contrary to popular opinion, this science of architectural principles has nothing to do with religion or mythology, but has more to do with creating a positive ‘Way of Living’.

Even if you find that your home is unaligned to the guidelines of Vastu, you can easily remodel the faults with minor alterations and alignments. By incorporating different geometric patterns, Vastu provides a collection of positive layouts for creating more suitable habitats. Vastu guidelines can not only be applied to homes, but also to offices, places of learning as well as of worship. Here are some Vastu tips for homes:

Main Entrance

In accordance with Vastu, the main entrance to your home is the point from which positive energy gains entry. The main door should ideally be facing the north-eastern side. The front door should always open in a clockwise manner. There should be no bathrooms located on this side of the house either. Ensure that there are no structures like wall corners that could obstruct the flow of positive energy into your home.

Living Room

This is the most important room as it is meant for activity and mingling. It should provide ample seating and be kept clutter-free. All large pieces of furniture should be placed along the south-western direction. All reflective items should find a home on the northern wall. Your living room is also the ideal place to display your Vastu-compliant plants and promote positivity in the room.

Kitchen

This all-important room is where your food is prepared. To ensure it is free of negativity, your kitchen should be in the south-eastern direction. Your cooking stove and ovens should also be placed in this direction. For prosperity, your food and grains should always be stored in the south-western part of the kitchen.

Prayer Room

This is another important part of your home where you commune spiritually with your maker. Your prayer room should ideally be in the north-eastern part of your home and painted in pale yellow or light blue colors.

Master Bedroom

You retire to your bedroom for rest and rejuvenation. Avoid adding elements into this room that would distract from this purpose. The bedroom should ideally be located in the south-western direction and so should the bed. Use light, neutral shades of wall color in this room along with gentle mood lighting, to create a restful atmosphere. For those who like to keep a TV in the bedroom, do not place it opposite the bed. Same goes for mirrors.

Kids’ Room

To create a child-friendly room that’s ideal for their upbringing and physical and mental growth, ensure that the study table is in the north-eastern direction. Their room should be bright and airy with cross-ventilation and plenty of sunlight. According to Vastu, the color of your child’s room should be green as it’s a soothing color that inspires the thinking ability of your child. You should also ensure that the room is free of bulky furnishing, pillars and beams. If the room has an attached bathroom, the bed shouldn’t be placed directly opposite the bathroom door. This is because bathrooms are believed to suck away positive energy from the child’s room.

If you are looking for Vastu-compliant homes, then go with Vishraam builders who have over 20 years of experience building premium villas and apartments in Thrissur area. What’s more, every Vishraam home is constructed responsibly without harming Mother Nature. Do check them out!

Apartment Interior Decoration Within your Budget

Interior decoration doesn’t have to be expensive or a luxury meant for the affluent only. With a few design ideas and subtle smart hacks, you can create a classy look for your apartment on a budget too.

Get the best of interior decoration for your dream home using simple decorative features that don’t necessarily have to cost an arm or a leg! It’s their unique placement that makes your home stand out and become your neighbor’s envy.While interior decoration might appear a little daunting for the first-timer, it all comes down to planning out the color palette, design patterns and features that you would love to showcase in your apartment. It’s your home and you are the best person to decorate it with the things that you love.

Here’s a simple guide to get you started on the exciting journey of decorating your apartment, within your budget:

Wall

The walls are your biggest canvas to play with when decorating your interiors. It’s always better to go with neutral, pastel shades as they never go out of style. You could consider using a paint that has gloss finishing as it reflects light and brightens up your interior spaces, making them look larger instantly.

Wallpapers

And if you are someone who loves wallpaper, choose a design that blends in with the design pattern of your apartment. It shouldn’t be too retro and take your apartment’s décor back a notch either. Choose glossy wallpaper on highlight walls to add interest to your room, while livening it up too. Choose the patterns depending on the room where they are to be used.

Curtains

Doing away with your tired curtains and replacing them with new ones is a great way of adding life to your room and its interior decor. Do ensure that they complement the colors of the walls and furnishing. Another way to add elegance to your room décor is by raising the height of your curtains. When they fall from the ceiling level, it automatically adds an illusion of height to your room along with great elegance.

Mirrors

Add visual space as well as an element of décor by strategically placing mirrors in key areas of your apartment, so they reflect the space and light. This will make it appear larger than it actually is. A floor-length mirror would look even better! Choose mirrors with interesting frames to add greater grandeur.

Floor

You can easily add beauty into a room with the element of rugs in shades and designs that complement its surroundings. Rugs can also be used to demarcate different functional spaces in open-design apartments. Amp up your décor with style and elegance by grouping furniture around an eye-catching rug.

Greenery

The green shades of fresh plants is a balm to the eyes, and makes elegant interior décor features in any room that they are placed in. Pair them up with pretty pots and you end up with enviable and affordable décor items. Plants such as peace lily, money plant, rubber tree, spider lily, bamboo palm, etc., grow well indoors and complement and liven up any space they occupy.

Furniture

Liven up your old, boring furniture by giving it a fresh lick of paint and watch it take on an entirely new personality! You could also consider changing the fabric on your soft furnishings such as sofas and chairs. Fluffy, new-looking furniture that complements the colors of your walls is another simple way of transforming your apartment’s décor. This is aside from prolonging the life of your furniture too!

Lights

Wall sconces are practical sources of light in a room. You could add a further element of interest to your room by adding overhead suspended lights too. Modern takes on the traditional chandelier aren’t necessarily expensive, but do make an elegant décor item in any room!

Premium realtors like Vishraam builders have a number of beautifully-architected apartment projects in Thrissur that are a delight to decorate. All these projects are located in niche localities and come fully loaded with delightful amenities and luxurious facilities. What’s more, all Vishraam homes are constructed responsibly, without harming the environment. Do have a look at them.

The Need for Apartments in Thrissur

Thrissur – the very name brings up images of grandeur and elegance.

To live in Thrissur is to be surrounded by history, culture, richness and traditions. Even during the pre-independence era, trade flourished. Businesses prospered, and today, the city offers a heady mix of job and business opportunities. The city has grown, and the cityscape is now dotted with tall apartment complexes. We take a look at why you need an apartment in Thrissur and where the best locations are.

The Social Infrastructure

In terms of investment, Thrissur is a fast-growing city with unlimited potential. The proximity to Kochi and Palakkad helps too. This has led to more developments throughout the city, attracting investors and driving up property prices in many parts. Given the likelihood of future developments, and with land going to be a scarce resource, more people are deciding to move into the apartments.

The Cost of Living

Thrissur is a major hub, with proximity to Kochi and the border states, the cost of living is quite low when compared to the rest of the state. However, there are certain pockets where the investment value will be more.

A Futuristic City

Thrissur as envisioned by Sakthan Thampuran, was futuristic. Now, it has become even more so with the advent of many new projects. The proximity with Kochi adds to its appeal. A well-laid-out network of roads, a well-defined central business hub around the Swaraj Ground, it a well-planned city to live in.

The Best Places to Set Up a Home

The key location to look for properties in neighbourhoods will be those that are seeing an upward trend in prices. When you invest in places like that they bring you future appreciation prospects. The location should provide ease of connectivity to your workplace as well as be close to basic infrastructural needs. Aside from being close to social amenities and facilities, it should also be accessible to public transport. Areas like Ayyanthole, Amala Nagar, Adat, Poonkunnam, Puzhakkal, and Patturaikal are some of the good locations to look into in Thrissur. Most of these localities are easily accessible areas that eventually connect with the central Swaraj Round.

With a legacy of over 20 years, Vishraam Builders is one of the pioneering companies that has redefined the real estate industry in Thrissur. Click here to know more about our projects: https://www.vishraam.com/

Importance of Good Credit Score for a Home Loan

Buying a home is not like a visit to the grocery store. For one, it costs a neat sum of money which is traditionally paid by availing of a home loan. When applying for a home loan the lender bank will want to know your loan history and your capacity to repay. This is also why you are asked to submit a long list of documents including your bank statements, salary slips and income tax returns.

They also look for your credit score, which is a 3-figure number and denotes your creditworthiness. A score higher than 750 is preferable. This makes you eligible for higher loan amounts, lower interest rates, lower EMIs and longer repayment tenures. Hence, having a good credit score that’s closer to 900 will work in your favor when applying for a home loan. If your credit score is anywhere below 675, you might want to first improve your credit score before thinking of taking a loan.

Here are some reasons why loaner banks need to take your credit scores into account:

Capacity to Repay

Before approving your home loan, your bank will first want to check for your capacity to repay back the loan. Your word doesn’t suffice here as banks need to know your income proof through relevant documents. If your bank statements don’t comply with the minimum income requirement, your loan application may get rejected. Ensure a healthy bank balance is being maintained.

Credit history

Different loans you have taken in the past as well as your management of credit cards give loaner banks an insight into your ability to handle credit. They will also go through your repayment history of previous loans, any loans that you are repaying currently, and if there is any history of default.

Ongoing credits

If you have an ongoing loan while applying for a high-value home loan, it’s considered risky by banks as you will then have a greater responsibility of repaying two loans. Aided by your credit score, banks can easily calculate if you are eligible for a high-value loan.

Your best move is to clear off any pending loans before applying for a home loan.

Best Places to Visit in Thrissur

Well-known for its religious sites, colorful festivals and places of natural beauty, Thrissur has a plethora of attractive tourism spots to enthrall domestic and foreign visitors alike. These attractions make great weekend getaways for the inhabitants of this ancient city too. Here’s a look at some of the best places to visit in Thrissur:

Guruvayur Temple

This ancient temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna and has a rich history taking it many millennia back. It boasts of traditional Kerala-style architecture and is beautifully adorned. Due to its popularity, it’s always teeming with devotees and tourists alike.

Punnathur Kotta

Thrissur is famous for its love of elephants. Enjoy a one-of-its-kind experience at this elephant sanctuary located a short distance from the Guruvayur temple. And if you are lucky, you could even participate in the bathing ritual of the elephants here!

Basilica of Our Lady of Dolours

If you are looking for a quiet break, then head to this towering church, also known as the white gem of Thrissur. It’s beautiful architectural beauty surrounded by lush greenery makes it a true haven of peace and tranquility.

Athirapally Waterfalls

Often compared with the Niagara Falls, visit the astounding Athirapally Waterfalls. Those visiting in the summer can enjoy bathing in its peaceful waters just before it plunges downward. During the monsoon months, bathing isn’t allowed as the falls are in full swing with its thunderous roar heard from far away!

Vadakkunnathan Temple

This is an ancient shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is decked out in gold and has beautiful wooden carvings and ancient murals depicting scenes from the Mahabharata. The huge centrally-located Thekkinkadu Maidan encircling this temple is used for the famous Thrissur Pooram festival.

Shakthan Thampuran Palace

This palace was built in 1795 by Rama Varma Sakthan Thampuran of the Princely State of Cochin. Showcasing a variety of antiques and relics that would surely pique your interest, it’s built in the Kerala-Dutch fusion style of architecture and stands out in its gleaming white glory.

Aside from this, there are numerous other attractions too including Chavakkad beach, Chettuva backwaters, etc. Attracted by its culture and beauty, people increasingly prefer to buy homes in Thrissur and settle down here.

How to Make your Home Look More Luxurious?

Your home is not only your castle where you are the king/queen of all that you see, but it’s also your daily source of joy and pride. And to make your home look more like a picture from the luxury homes section of glossy magazines, here are some interior decorating ideas and tips to help you get there:

Statement Pieces

Identify key elements that could add a luxurious feel to your home and are worth splurging out on. Some of these features easily include eye-catching chandeliers, stand-out area rugs and sofas with outstanding colors and fabrics.

Centerpiece

Why wait for a party to add flower power to your home. Fresh cut flowers add an easy luxury element to any home. Display them in the hall, dining table or even the kitchen!

Bookshelves

Create a whole wall of books to add an element of elegance to your room. Ensure that the bookshelf has a wood tone finishing to make it look rich. Aside from books, you can also add a few curio items to your shelves to heighten interest levels!

Mirrors

Use a large mirror with an interesting frame to make a space look bigger – and add a luxurious feel. It will also brighten up the space as it reflects light. A floor-length mirror is even better!

Window Dressing

Off-the-shelf blinds/curtains might not fit perfectly to your window’s dimensions. To create an opulent, luxurious look, have your window dressings tailor-made to your windows. Drapes that are ceiling-to-floor length, not only add height to the room, but also add elegance.

Wall Art

If you feel your walls or ceilings look dull, do consider adding cornicing or molding. You could add this type of artwork at the chair railing level or towards the ceiling level, and add greater elegance to your home.

Update Fixtures

Changing old door or drawer knobs, door handles, light switches or even water faucets can amp up the luxury factor in your home.

Rugs

Color-coordinated area rugs help to ground furniture groupings and define room boundaries. This is aside from providing a creative element of interest to the room.

There are numerous other ways you can add a luxurious look to your home – this isn’t all! And if you are buying a flat or villa from Vishraam builders in Thrissur, you can be sure you are buying into luxuriously designed that will be the envy of your friends. With over 20 years of experience, Vishraam builders have the finest homes available in key niche areas of Thrissur and its surrounding localities. What’s more, every Vishraam home is built responsibly, without harming the environment.

Comparison between Buying a Villa and Buying an Apartment

Homes are a solid form of investment and almost everyone invests in one during their lifetime. However, with the multiple varieties of homes available, making an informed choice can become challenging. With the two main types of homes being villas and apartments, here’s an unbiased look at their properties to help you decide:

Luxury quotient

Villas offer independent homes that epitomize luxury. If money isn’t an issue, then villas are an obvious choice. Apartments, on the other hand cost considerably less (even in the luxury segment), but come with a multitude of neighbors. Choosing a villa over an apartment is all about choosing luxury over practicality!

Customization

Most people have a dream home in their mind which is customized to their needs. With villas, this can become a possibility as you have the freedom to knock down a wall or make alterations or additions (within limits). In apartments, one cannot make any changes to the structure and is limited to playing with interior décor styles only.

Location

This factor can become a game-changer. Since having easy access to important facilities and infrastructure is key to buying a home, apartments definitely compare better as they are more centrally located. Villas are spread out in their own plot of land and require more space. Hence, it’s common to find villa projects located towards the outskirts of the city. The bottom line here is that the home should be within reasonable connectivity distances.

Budget

For those homebuyers with a restricted budget, apartments make better options. There is always a plethora of apartment projects to choose from and they come fully packed with a host of luxurious amenities and maintenance services too. As villas come with their own plot of land, they are heavier on the pocket and considered a luxury item.

ROI

If you are buying a home with an eye on returns on investment (ROI), then a villa should be your natural choice. Though villas are comparatively more expensive to buy, when it’s time to sell, villas get you better profits as cost of land only goes up. Apartments may not get you such profitable ROIs.

Hope this write-up gives you a better insight when choosing your home. When going home shopping, go with well-known builders with a reputation to keep. With over 20 years of experience, Vishraam builders offer magnificent villas and apartments for sale in niche areas of Thrissur and its surrounding localities. Fully loaded with delightful amenities and facilities, Vishraam homes are constructed responsibly without harming mother nature. Do have a look at them.

Steps to Create the Perfect Workspace at Home

The pandemic has changed the way people work, live and socialise. To stay safe and ensure social distancing norms, almost everyone who can work from home has had to create a dedicated space to call a home office. Since not all homes come with provisions for a home office, you need to get innovative with your imagination and create a workspace that’s functional, comfortable and away from homely distractions.

Here are some tips to help you create the perfect workspace at home:

Choosing the right spot

Instead of moving from place to place in search of privacy or inspiration, choose a fixed spot for working from home. It should also be peaceful and comfortable. The best spot should ideally be away from distractions, clutter and home responsibilities. Once you know what derails your attention, you can choose a spot that’s free of such distractions. This could be background noise, kids running around, appeal of the TV or sight of pending housework.

Choose a spot that will promote productivity and offers a neat background for those times when you need to have video meetings.

Get connected

Depending on the type of work you do, some of the essential things you will need to work will include a laptop, or desk top, phone charging point, printer, etc. Make sure your home office is located close to a power point, or consider getting a multi-plug extension cord to plug in all your devices. Another important issue to factor in is Wi-Fi connectivity. Ensure your workspace has strong signals to facilitate smooth flow of data.

Proper lighting

Since you will be spending many hours at your workspace, ensure proper lighting to avoid eye strain. If there is no natural light streaming in, consider placing your table in a way that ensures sufficient artificial lighting. Avoid backlighting as it doesn’t work well with video calling. A blank wall behind you will create the perfect, uncluttered background necessary for your web meetings.

Focus on ergonomics

Your work space sets your mood for getting work done. Make it a comfortable and peaceful zone. Brighten it up with some greenery or an inspiring piece of art. But more important than everything else is the type of table and chair you will be using. Ensure that the table is of just the right height and your office chair is ergonomically designed to prevent slouching or back pain. If necessary, prop it up with some cushions.

And if you are living in a Vishraam home, you don’t have much to worry about. Vishraam builders consistently provide architecturally designed living spaces that thoughtfully provide room for all your needs. With over 2000 satisfied customers, 44+ projects spanning an expansive 20 years, Vishraam homes provide the ultimate living experiences. What’s more, every project ensures conservation of natural resources, minimizing waste generation and pollution control. Do check out the multiple Vishraam projects featuring luxurious apartment and villas located in and around Thrissur.