This week, Housing Development Finance Corporation Ltd or HDFC Ltd, the country’s leading housing finance company launched a home loan product called “Women Power” with a differential rate of interest exclusively for women customers. The applicable rate of interest under this product will be 9.85 per annum, five basis points below its normal applicable home loan rate under the variable rate product. The loan will be subject to the women being the sole or joint owner of the property and a first applicant or co-applicant to the loan. The “Women Power” is applicable to all resident and non-resident Women, the company said.
“We are delighted to introduce this new initiative to promote home ownership amongst women. She should be financially capable to buy her dream home. With this product we are empowering women with confidence of buying her own house,” said Renu Sud Karnad, Managing Director, HDFC Ltd.
At the same time, Federal Bank also offers a home loan scheme for women called ‘Her Ghar’ at a concessional interest rate at 9.85 per cent with an equated monthly instalment of Rs 867 per lakh for a period of 30 years, provided the woman is the sole applicant or first co-applicant of the home loan and the property proposed to be financed is either in the sole name of the woman borrower or she is the first owner in case of joint ownership.
While State Bank of India (SBI) was prompt enough to reduce its lending rate by 15 basis points to 9.85 per cent, effective 10 April it announced a further reduction of 10 basis points in its home loan rate, few days later in order to reclaim itself as the cheapest home loan lender. Accordingly, SBI offers home loans at 9.85 per cent to women and 9.9 per cent for general customers.
Banks began slashing lending rates soon after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) urged them to do so, in the monetary policy on April 7. They are gearing up to push up their retail loans, against the backdrop of poor credit growth.