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Interview with Vineet Relia, Managing Director, SARE Homes

June 27, 2016
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Interview with Vineet Relia, Managing Di...
Vineet Relia, Managing Director, SARE Homes, talks about the techology solutions that SARE Homes delivers at its townships, the upcoming opportunities from government initiatives such as Smart Cities, and the emerging technology trends in the real estate industry. Excerpts...

What are your views on the government's smart cities initiative? What will be the role of telecom and IT in the overall concept of a smart city? 

Smart cities are meant to make life more efficient, liveable, sustainable and less expensive via the use of digital technology, which saves energy and minimises usage of resources. The development of any smart city needs to be addressed through two factors: infrastructure (communication, electricity, roads, sanitation, water, etc.) and real estate. The beauty of Smart Cities, lies in the fact that they deploy the latest digital technologies in all operations – water, electricity, gas, transport, sewage, solar energy, rainwater harvesting, recycling, etc. Therefore, IT and telecom act as major component for smart city. In fact, it is difficult to visualise a smart city without a robust IT and telecom backbone.

Also, besides efficiency, liveability and sustainability, a Smart City’s success will be gauged by lower carbon footprints of its various utilities and services. Here also IT plays a major role as the latest clean technologies can ensure that modern buildings have a lower carbon trail. Even older buildings can achieve higher energy efficiencies through retrofitting.

If implemented well, the smart cities project will create great opportunities for the realty sector. To begin with, it has to be understood that urbanisation works hand in glove with the economic development of the country. A better infrastructure would give a much needed push to the beleaguered sector that has been facing the challenge of unsold inventory for a long time. An incorporation of ICT, energy efficiency and sustainability seeped into the core of the cities would improve the liveability quotient of the city.

What cutting-edge technologies are delivered at the townships developed by SARE Homes?

As a strategy to build productive workforce within the organisation, we have taken the initiative of changing the traditional model of selling through real estate agents to a more professional system of in-house sales. We believe that the company’s technology infrastructure must be mature and robust enough to support the business. Considering this and the fact that securing data is paramount for any developer, SARE Homes has migrated the organisation to Microsoft Office 365. This approach helps SARE in strengthening customer relationships and drives the referral business while protecting information.

Also, for the benefit of our residents, we have installed smart meters at most of our townships, which help them to control the energy meter fromtheir mobile. The user can see the live reading/ balance on the mobile and can shut down their meters remotely as and when required. This helps in energy management and reduces wastage. An SMS alert is also be sent to the user in case it reads a low balance for a specific user. Apart from this, we have also started deploying fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) technology for a smooth and high speed internet connection.

What are the key technology trends that are likely to be witnessed by the real estate sector? 

In today’s time everyone wishes to live in energy-efficient homes that offer comforts and conveniences too; because of this the concept of smart homes is gaining traction. Although smart homes can cost around 10 per cent more due to the one-time initial investment, these are soon recovered through the lower use of energy and other scarce resources, ensuring higher savings in the long run. 

Also, with the current push from the government for energy conservation and climate change green building are also gaining acceptance from the consumers. As the construction sector in India is one of the highest consumers of natural resources and energy, there is a huge opportunity for energy efficiency in the sector. It is now being increasingly realised that sustainable development approach towards the development and construction of buildings (commercial and residential) can enhance both the economic well-being and environmental health of communities.

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