Hi I’ve been following up this form for some time I’ve been in USA for around 8 years. As of now I’ve not invested in real estate in India Chennai. I guess the Chennai Realestate price have increased multiple folds and I assume it will keep increasing. As may of you folks have done when ever I use to visit Chennai on vacation I use to visit some of the plots, Flats, old houses etc… in Chennai but either the price is too high or its not a worth for investment .

Days, Months and years have passed but I’ve not purchased any thing till date what I’ve is all cash which I’ve half in FD – India. Remaining Money I’ve as US dollars. As you know how interest works in US we do not get any returns by investing in US banks Only good thing that I feel happy now is increase in exchange rates(Not sure how long this will last :)). I want settle down in India which I am not sure when. I need advise if I can hold US dollars or send all USD to India and either invest in Real estate or FD or do some thing else. Do we have any chance that USD value will increase in future.

Please advise…
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  • Financial wisdom dictates that you distribute your wealth among various asset classes. FD will make banks happy, not you. Realestate is better any day, compared to FDs. 8 years in US means you should be talking 8 digit sums. I suggest a mix of property (70%) and Gold ETFs. It's difficult to time the market. If you find a property to your liking, go for it even if you need to take a loan, which must be easy for you to avail.

    Personally, I don't see any point in holding dollars beyond what you need immediately, unless you plan to settle in US.
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  • Originally Posted by Ganarch
    Hi I’ve been following up this form for some time I’ve been in USA for around 8 years. As of now I’ve not invested in real estate in India Chennai. I guess the Chennai Realestate price have increased multiple folds and I assume it will keep increasing. As may of you folks have done when ever I use to visit Chennai on vacation I use to visit some of the plots, Flats, old houses etc… in Chennai but either the price is too high or its not a worth for investment .

    Days, Months and years have passed but I’ve not purchased any thing till date what I’ve is all cash which I’ve half in FD – India. Remaining Money I’ve as US dollars. As you know how interest works in US we do not get any returns by investing in US banks Only good thing that I feel happy now is increase in exchange rates(Not sure how long this will last :)). I want settle down in India which I am not sure when. I need advise if I can hold US dollars or send all USD to India and either invest in Real estate or FD or do some thing else. Do we have any chance that USD value will increase in future.

    Please advise…


    Do yourself a favour.

    Buy realestate in India (Major cities) ASAP.

    Looks like you have long investment time horizon and you plan to return to India. What has stopped you from putting a bit of effort and buy RE?

    I mostly agree with Murugesh,except for the Gold ETF part (not at this stage)

    RE is a better hedge against India's traditional hyper Inflation and chronic INR devaluation.

    If you are planning to return to India you must be Invested in RE.

    For an NRI Indian bank FD means minus -10% return.
    I would not consider Indian FD for any reason (Unless NRE foreign currency FD that to for no more than 2 years)

    Act fast.
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  • Originally Posted by Economist
    Do yourself a favour.

    Buy realestate in India (Major cities) ASAP.

    Looks like you have long investment time horizon and you plan to return to India. What has stopped you from putting a bit of effort and buy RE?

    I mostly agree with Murugesh ( except for the Gold ETF part)

    RE is a better hedge against India's traditional hyper Inflation and chronic INR devaluation.

    If you are planning to return to India you must be Invested in RE.

    For an NRI Indian bank FD means minus -10% return.
    I would not consider Indian FD for any reason (Unless NRE foreign currency FD that to for no more than 2 years)

    Act fast.


    I second Economist here.Bear in mind that whether it is dollar/INR-it is nothing but a piece of paper.Never have significant holdings in cash-go for RE/Gold investment.
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  • Also invest in good mutual funds via regular monthly SIP and via one time investment chunks (whenever stock market dips) with a time horizon of 5 to 10 years. RE is a illiquid investment where you need to wait for some time to encash for any requirements. Whereas MF is highly liquid and you can encash in 3 days with a button click. Therefore, spread your investments in RE, MF and Gold MF/ETF. But, Majority of investment should be in RE.
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  • Originally Posted by Economist

    For an NRI Indian bank FD means minus -10% return.
    I would not consider Indian FD for any reason (Unless NRE foreign currency FD that to for no more than 2 years)

    Economist, Can you elaborate this part. I didnt get it. Why would an Indian bank FD be better than an NRE FD?
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  • Originally Posted by randomguy
    Economist, Can you elaborate this part. I didnt get it. Why would an Indian bank FD be better than an NRE FD?


    Please read my post one more time.

    I am saying Indian bank FD (in INR) is not recommended.

    I am saying NRE- FCNR FD is better for short term ( NRE-FCNR is an FD offered by Indian Banks in foreign currency - Ie: if you deposit say 10,000 AUD/CAD/NZD/USD/GBP for say 2 yr - after maturity you get 10,000 same Forex + interest = your investment will not be subject to forex volatility)

    No conversion fees and exchange commission.
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  • Thanks all for your valuable advise at this point I do not have any one in India to help me with the Real estate investment my parents are with me now, once they are back in India I am planning to make some investment in India, I am planning to visit India in Feb of next year probably I will start looking for some properties and finalize once I am in India. I think I can begin with my EFT gold investment which I think I can begin immediately, can you please provide insight on what is the reliable way(website) to make investment in gold EFT please advise.
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  • If you are planning to settle there, then do not bother about RE in India.

    If you have definite plans of coming back, then you should look into it. You need to put a lot of effort and time to get one.

    Read my post.
    https://www.indianrealestateforum.com/forum/city-forums/chennai-real-estate/3521-property-price-trends-in-chennai/page85?t=4050&page=85
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  • I dont think invested in FD is bad at all. The NRE FD was giving 9.5% ROI and that too tax free. This is safest and most liquid investment that will atleast take care of the inflation year-on-year.

    But yes, you should be invested in RE too. May be not at this stage because of insane prices but I would suggest to atleast makeup your mind for RE and start looking for a reasonable investment. Thast said, if you are buying for end use then I would not call it an investment. In that case no time is a bad time for buying your dream home.

    Apart from this, you can start small monthly investments in gold and mutual funds. Dont buy ETF but physical gold. For mutual funds investment, select two growth funds with good track records and start SIP.
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  • Originally Posted by Ganarch
    Thanks all for your valuable advise at this point I do not have any one in India to help me with the Real estate investment my parents are with me now, once they are back in India I am planning to make some investment in India, I am planning to visit India in Feb of next year probably I will start looking for some properties and finalize once I am in India. I think I can begin with my EFT gold investment which I think I can begin immediately, can you please provide insight on what is the reliable way(website) to make investment in gold EFT please advise.


    I suggested Gold ETFs as they are far more liquid than, say, MFs or Stocks. More importantly, for the last two you should know what you are doing, which stock, which fund, etc., and you should be watching their movement all the time. Gold ETFs do not carry that issue, they have very little down side, and have consistently returned 25% year-on-year for the past several years.

    In any case, Gold ETFs or stocks, you need to have demat and trading accounts. Every brokerage house provides both. My familiarity is with Sharekhan, Kotak Securities and ICICIDirect. I think for your purpose Sharekhan is the best, offers lowest brokerage(0.2 - 0.6 %), and does the job. Kotak is a better portal, slightly higher brokerage, but better research. I won't recommend ICICIDirect. I've heard Motilal Oswal is the best.

    Alternately, if you choose to invest in MFs, you don't need demat or trading accounts. Just visit the website of any fund house, and you can invest online. For information and a good comparison of available MFs - www dot valueresearchonline dot com

    Originally Posted by sidhuRE
    I dont think invested in FD is bad at all. The NRE FD was giving 9.5% ROI and that too tax free. This is safest and most liquid investment that will atleast take care of the inflation year-on-year.

    But yes, you should be invested in RE too. May be not at this stage because of insane prices but I would suggest to atleast makeup your mind for RE and start looking for a reasonable investment. Thast said, if you are buying for end use then I would not call it an investment. In that case no time is a bad time for buying your dream home.

    Apart from this, you can start small monthly investments in gold and mutual funds. Dont buy ETF but physical gold. For mutual funds investment, select two growth funds with good track records and start SIP.


    Can't agree mate! No offense there. Annual inflation in India is 10% (food prices alone. In some sectors, such as RE, it can be far higher). What good is a 9.5%. You actually lose value. ETFs are better than physical gold by any count. The best option in physical gold as an investment is to buy hallmarked bars (not the coins from banks). But why have the hassle of carrying it around and opening bank lockers. When necessary, selling a part of it is even bigger hassle.
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  • FD is attracting max interest rate if one has PAN card n MF has 10% with lot of risks. Debt fund is best when interest rate is high and coming down. But for NRI ,Physical gold purchase n RE investment are greener pastures in short to medium term in the long term!!
    But one has to indulge in 2-3 investment cycle to understand the nuiance and nuisance with better yield in first hand
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  • Ganarch, I am in the same position like you but I am not a NRI.

    RE:
    I made serious efforts on last few months to invest in RE around Chennai. Honestly, everything is too hyped, insanely priced... most of the plots seems to doubled, tripled in last the 8 months.. even in villages around omr (8 km, 10 km off ) with no infrastructure cost you 30 lakhs to 80 lakhs. I tried my best to invest, but it seems these prices are severely hyped and in a big bubble.. mostly those who invested in very low prices / brokers doing a full time job of increasing the prices blindly every month. Not sure how long this will go. Most of the NRIs / local people invest purely out of pressure. I feel that any one with common sense will not / should not invest at these insane prices. May be if we can identify places where prices are low..means builders/brokers not active in those places yet..( remote places around chennai ), it may have a chance to to increase a lot ( because these builders & agents will take care of creating hype for those places too at some point of time ). But there are lot of question marks, obviously.
    I found plots/flats prices are cheap comparatively off Electronic city, Bangalore ( hosur road, anekal road etc ). But I am not a real estate expert.

    GOLD:
    Prices are too high right now. I will not invest in gold at this moment.

    FD:
    Try to put 20% of your money in FD on your name or on your father / mother name (as Senior citizens get higher rates )

    Stock:
    If you ready to take risk put some 20% in stock market. Don't invest in single go... spread out over a year.. invest whenever they are big falls in entire market. Go for long and invest in established stocks. Of-course this need your
    time. Otherwise go for MF.

    You might hear stories like your friend / relative bought a plot of 1 lakh and it is selling for 50 lakhs / 1 crore kinda stories.. I think it is over and we missed the bus. You can spend money right now to make the others rich.. may be you can get your money doubled in 4 to 6 years if everything goes smooth.
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  • Plots are extremely hard to shop. If you are looking for plots, you will keep on looking forever. It is a perfect recipe to miss the bus.
    Higher returns= High Risk=High entry price

    Flats, resale and new are easier to shop. You can make an easier decision.
    New flats are expensive but staggered payment reduces interest burden. Old flats, sometime you can find good deals, but you have to put some effort.

    Once you have a flat, you can always window shop around for a cheap plot as a secondary investment.

    Indian stock markets are not looking very good at the moment.
    Gold will correct near term, long term it should do well.
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  • Thanks all for providing all your valuable inputs I guess I’ve missed all train, bus, Flight what not on the RE I guess I agree with “K11” first post that we need to put in lot of effort and time to find the right property and invest at the right time. My dad use to say that all the time do not think too much to invest you would get the return which I never followed and now grumbling I missed the Bus, train and what not….
    One of the major reason why I think I was not able to invest is all the remoteness(living abroad) and as usual I was scared of losing my money buying some property with litigation. I know its 100% my fault may be I am just giving reasons to cover-up my fault. Just to give you guys more insight I am currently not looking for end use, I am looking for investment. I’m not a big fan of living in outside the city. To me Triplicane and Mylapore(I know Gemini is Chennai Center for now ) is the heart of the city as I was raised there (20+ years now home for my parents) when people talk about Porur or some other outskirts for some reason I am not able to digest that probably that because of the mind set and I’ve been an NRI for long time. Even if I’ve not made any investment my parents have made good investments in and around the city limits. Eventually I would inherit the properties but that will happen after long time. My dad was not able to help me with the RE as he was busy with his own investment finding a property. I’m not the only sibling for my parents so I want to make some investment for my own. I’ve been nagging my dad to find some property we use to have lots of arguments and finally result in big fight and then for few months I give up on RE. As “arvbin” rightly mentioned the brokers are doubling/tripling the prices month after month and in places where there is no infrastructure I don’t want to invest in such properties, be a sitting duck and that is what my dad says to me aswell.. Also once I buy the property I don’t even think of selling them probably that is the mind set that I’ve, sell only when you are in trouble.
    I’ve one basic question which I don’t have answer for “Where are people getting money from?” I’ve work my ass off in US to make the savings for any given year, I’d to sacrifice on few things. But when It comes to India prices have increased multiple folds and people have that much money as I’ve worked so hard to make the money I don’t feel like investing in some place which is not worth for investment. Also some of the folks buy and keep selling/buying plots for rotation not for end use as no one is really buying for end use the area remains undeveloped or underdeveloped which is the reality I believe.
    At this point I am confused, yes gold/MF is a good option and I am still not going to give up on RE one fine day I will be able to find some good property of my own. I guess luck is also a factor is RE investment(Sounds stupid) but I believer to some level.
    Please share your thoughts and experience as well….
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  • By the way, Do you own a home in US or do you rent there?

    I do not understand the craziness of Chennaites towards plots. Being an NRI with a stable paycheck you should be able to leverage up easily. More money can be made that way.


    I’ve one basic question which I don’t have answer for “Where are people getting money from?”

    Things have changed a lot, avg US salaries are not enough to buy high end homes in Chennai.
    Harsh reality there.
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