RBI hikes repo rate again, home loans to get costlier
RBI hikes repo rate again, home loans to get costlier

RBI hikes repo rate again, home loans to get costlier

By Rishabh Chamoli | 2023-03-17

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has revised the repo rate for the last time this Financial Year (FY) 2022 to 23. After a 25 basis point (bps) hike, the repo rate now stands at 6.5 percent. The last hike of 35 bps in December 2022 followed similar announcements by the central bank.

Update The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has announced the last repo rate hike for the current financial year (FY) 2022 23 in its Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting on February 8, 2023. The apex bank has raised the repo rate by 25 basis points (bps) to 6.50 percent and Marginal Standing Facility (MSF) rate to 6.75 percent.

The financial year 2022-23 has witnessed the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) announcing six upward revisions in the repo rate the rate at which the apex bank lends money to banks and financial institutions across the country. The current repo rate stands at 6.5 percent. After maintaining an accommodative stance on the repo rate at four percent during the pandemic, the first repo rate revision was announced in May 2022 with a hike of 40 bps. Since then, the RBI has announced five more repo rate hikes. Of this, 50 bps hike was introduced three times and the last one introduced in December 2022 was of 35 bps. These hikes came into effect after MPC meetings scheduled in 2022 on May 4, June 8, August 5, September 30, and December 7. The final increase in the lending rates for the fiscal year ending on March 31, 2023 is expected to hike the home loan interest rates charged by banks, thus, impacting the home purchasing power of the masses.

Hikes announced by banks in March 2023
Effective from March 1, 2023, HDFC has increased its Repo Linked Lending Rate (RLLR) by further 25 bps. Also, Punjab National Bank (PNB) has increased the MCLR by 10 bps across all tenors. The State Bank of India (SBI) has raised its base rate by 70 bps from 9.4 percent to 10.1 percent. The bank has also revised the Benchmark Prime Lending Rate (BPLR) from 14.15 percent to 14.85 percent. Both the changes have been brought into effect from March 15, 2023 by SBI.

Will the increase in lending rates discourage homebuyers?
Realty experts believe that an upward revision in lending rates would upset the market, particularly the homebuyers. This combined with an increase in the rate of units in new housing societies by builders due to increasing raw material cost could hurt the buyer sentiment further. The home ownership appetite might decrease in the short term. But, it will largely depend on State governments decisions to extend or offer some subsidies on stamp duty and registration costs to counter balance the impact of the increase in home finance and new home costs.

With the RBI announcing repo rate revisions every few months, the real estate sector hopes for some favourable home loan policies so homebuyers can continue investing, keeping the realty landscape unaffected.

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