What to know about mortgage and how it works


A mortgage, also referred to as a mortgage loan, is used by buyers of property to raise capital for purchase or by existing property owners to raise funds for any purpose.

Before understanding this in detail, let us re-visit the more commonly known entity ‘loan’. A loan is a relationship between two parties – a lender and borrower. The lender is also called a creditor and the borrower is called a debtor. The money lent and received in this transaction is known as a loan. The amount of money initially borrowed is called the principal. The borrower pays back not just the principal but also an additional fee, called interest.

Loan repayments are usually paid in monthly instalments and the duration of the loan is usually pre-determined. In the early years, most of your repayments will go toward paying off interest on a mortgage. But as your mortgage reduces, the interest part of the repayment goes down. So as time goes on, more of the monthly repayments go toward paying off the capital. The borrower usually has to pay an up-front amount called as the down-payment as part of the initial loan payment. This is usually arranged to a maximum of 20% of the property value.


Mortgages are secured (collateral) loans that are specifically tied to real estate property, such as land or a house. A collateral serves as protection for a lender against a borrower’s default—that is, it can be used to offset the loan to any borrower failing to pay the principal and interest under the terms of a loan obligation. Un-secured loans are not attached to assets hence they introduce higher risk to a borrower. These kinds of loans thus involve smaller amounts. Credit cards, bank overdrafts, and personal loans are all types of unsecured loans.

The property is owned by the borrower in exchange for money that is paid in installments over time. This enables borrowers to use property sooner than if they were required to pay the full value of the property upfront. Once the mortgage amount (principal + interest) is paid in full, the borrower then becomes a full owner of the property. This arrangement also protects creditors (mortgagees). In the event that a debtor repeatedly misses mortgage loan payments, for example, his or her home and/or land may be foreclosed upon; meaning the lender once again takes physical ownership of the property to recover the losses incurred as a result of the defaults.

Types of mortgages

In terms of interest rates, the mortgages can be further categorized as fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) and adjustable rate mortgage (ARM). In an FRM, the borrower pays the same interest rate for the life of the loan i.e. the monthly principal and interest payment remain the same from the first mortgage payment to the last. In this ‘traditional’ form of mortgage, the borrower is un-affected by either a rise or a fall in the market interest rate. This type of mortgage loan is preferred if economy is not very strong and the interest rates are going to fluctuate.With an ARM, the interest rate is fixed for an initial term, but then it fluctuates with market interest rates. The monthly payments by the borrower are thus un-predictable– where-in there could be a decrease in the amount in case the market rate decreases or the
borrower would need to cough up an added sum on the interest rates if the market rate increases. These types of mortgage loans are preferred in a performing economy where interest rates are likely to fall.

Reverse Mortgage

Another interesting type of an instrument in this family is a reverse mortgage which helps the home-owner to raise capital by borrowing against the value or his / her home. This is exactly the opposite of a conventional home mortgage loan. When the home is pledged, its monetary value is arrived at by the bank, on the basis of the demand for the property, current property prices, and the condition of the house. The bank then disburses a loan amount to the home-owner in the form of periodic payments, after considering a margin for interest costs and price fluctuations. The periodic payments also known as reverse EMI are received by the home-owner over fixed loan tenure.

Sembakkam- Residing here is sheer delight for residents

Nature and Modernity- The best of both worlds in Sembakkam!


Sembakkam is a quiet, consecrated municipal in Kancheepuram district, located within the south side of the ever so bustling city of Chennai. Situated approximately 30 kms away from the city centre, Sembakkam has recently been in the news on account of proximity to the adjacent IT Parks and the recent growth in real estate activity.

About Sembakkam

Positioned advantageously in St Thomas Mount Taluk of Kancheepuram district, Sembakkam lies within the Chennai Metropolitan Area (CMA). The area enjoys superb access through road, rail and air bases and is connected to all the important landmarks within a 10 km radius. Recently the Sembakkam Municipality received its prestigious ISO 9001:2008 certification from an evaluating body— a recognition that is not just noteworthy but well-deserved as well.

However, Sembakkam has become hugely popular among home buyers for the simple reason that the area provides a wonderful work life balance. There is a hurried measure of pace combined with a perfect harmony of peace with many temples such as the Chandra Mouleeswarar temple, the Jambulingeswarar temple- a temple of lord shiva and Aghilandeswari amman.

The exquisite Skandasharamam temple has been built recently with lord murugan, pancha muga Vinayagar, Shiva lingam and lord Mahalakshmi. Besides these there are many other temples in and around the area. The Guruswamy Nagar temple is believed to be one of the more pristine and well-maintained must-visit temples here.

There is a reserve forest area within the precincts of Sembakkam and it serves as a green lung to the town. Besides which, families frequent the immaculate Sembakkam Park which has many amenities such as a library, water fountain, orchids, lawn, shuttle ground, a walking path. Moreover, the Sembakkam Lake is located in this area and one can easily access the nearby Cove long beach.

These factors have contributed to make Sembakkam a highly coveted destination.

The challenges of a growing area

The Sembakkam Lake is situated between Sembakkam, the Chitlapakkam town panchayats and the Pallavaram municipality.Once sprawled across 150 acres, the Lake is now believed to be much smaller in size due to encroachments.

Considered to be a rich treasure trove of water, the lake receives the excess water supply from the nearby Chitlapakkam Lake and other reservoirs in Hasthinapuram and Nemilichery. The value of the lake can further be gauged from the fact that every monsoon,the lake assists in recharging the ground water table and provides an ongoing source of water supply in the nearby areas.

However in recent times the lake was subjected to massive garbage dumping and encroachments. Nevertheless the issue was recently taken up seriously and authorities have planned constructing a weir and putting up a fence around the lake in order to curb encroachments. There are plans for reconstructing the outlet point, de-silting and height increment of the lake bund as well.

Once complete, the redevelopment activities planned for the Semabakkam Lake will go on to make this place a nature lovers paradise.

Covelong Beach

The covelong beach is merely 45 mins or 27-28 kms Sembakkam, if one travels via the Medavakkam-Mambakkam Rd or the Vandalur-Kelambakkam Rd. The beach is renowned for its fishing activities and a charming seaside façade. Many activities such as windsurfing, swimming among other water sports can be enjoyed at the beach. In fact, as you walk along the beach, you will also come across the ruins of an ancient Dutch fort. A leisurely stroll in the Covelong (Kovalam) village will take you to an archaic Catholic Church.

At a distance of a few kilometres from Covelong, one can reach Mahabalipuram and visit the 7th century shore temples or the Crocodile farm.



Handy energy tips that take the shock out of the energy bill

Save your penny and earn it too- Home energy conservation tips that will make you smile!


Why save energy?
Let there be light! But let there be no squandering of it, especially not in today’s day and age. No wastage- That’s the mantra, considering that we are almost entirely dependent on fossil fuels for energy production. Given that fossil fuels are fast depleting besides being a non-renewable source, mankind will be in a doldrums if energy conservation is not taken seriously by one and all.

But what is all this energy conservation brouhaha about? In simple terms, it is a clever method of expending electricity with a slight change in the consumption methods; a means of preventing future resource depletion with a lessening pressure on precious fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas. Conversely, burning less of fossil fuels also means lower carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, the number one cause of global warming. And of course, who can ignore the fact that besides easing pressure on fossil fuels there is the added benefit of saving on energy bills and making some added income on the side.

Here’s some innovative ways and means of conserving the mega watts-

Energy saving in the building
Most architects and builders prefer to make buildings complaint with energy saving methods from the blueprint phases itself. Smart homes now come with pre-fit motion sensor lightings and solar panels that reduce wastage and make way for optimum saving on electricity. Older buildings conduct energy audits, a tried and tested method for improving the utilization of energy. Essentially, the audit suggests ways and means of reducing the consumption of energy without creating any unnecessary interferences or disruptions. Audits can be done in commercial and residential buildings alike.

Conservation begins at home
There are innumerable ways of making a neat saving by employing handy energy conservation guidelines that ensure you can turning on the savings by choosing to turn off that button-

Make it two

The oven uses many kilowatts of energy and its truly a criminal waste to utilise it for just one thing. Ideally, it is suggested to prep in advance and prepare two-three things that can be placed on multiple baking trays and placed in one go itself.

Scrape it off-
It may sound easy and less of a tedious process, however, pre-rinsing the dishes in hot water in the dishwasher does use a lot of energy. It is better to scrape the dishes beforehand and toss the leftover scraps in the bin. Pop the dishes into the dishwasher and you’ll find that it’ll save precious water and electricity. Additionally, it is important to start the dishwasher on full load capacity besides turning on the energy saving setting. This will allow the dishes to air dry conveniently or you can turn off the drying cycle yourself. You’ll find that the heat for the drying cycle utilises nearly 20 percent of energy of the total dishwasher’s electricity consumption.

Did you know that nearly 90% of a washing machine’s energy is exhausted on heating up water? Ideally, one must set the clothes washer to either warm or cold water setting, rarely hot. Wash your clothes at 30-40 °C and you’ll save a good amount of money.

It is also advisable to hang the clothes out to dry, rather than using the tumble drying setting. Even better, take your clothes out of the dryer just before they’ve completely dried off. The slight remnant dampness will help to iron clothes quicker. Besides, you’ll also have used less energy on the drier.

Blow hot. Blow cold
The trick is to set it right and then sit tight. Don’t keep the heater going on for too long, just set the thermostat to an ideal temperature and leave it be. Using hot blasts for unnecessarily heating the room will lead to wasteful consumption of energy and put additional load on the heater.

Similarly, in the summer, keep the air conditioners on an accurate setting keeping into account the number of people and the temperatures outside. Ensure that you use the sleep timer at nighttimes. Additionally, clean or replace air filters from time to time. Air conditioners get overloaded when it requires drawing air through dirty filters. Replacing the filter in time can save upto 5 percent of energy.

Siruseri, Nellikuppam, Kellambakkam – A combined real estate success story in the making

IT and Auto Industry Hub


Aside from the fact that Chennai is considered an IT and auto industry hub, there are many other acclaims attributed to Chennai. The city is host to the third-largest expat population in India, coming next only to Mumbai and Delhi. What’s more, BBC has recently ranked Chennai as one of the ‘hottest’ cities to live in- a global city that has a beautiful amalgamation of the modern and traditional ideals. And the accolades don’t just stop there, Chennai’s emergence as an offshoring hotspot has further cemented the glistening future of this city and has made the city the secondary financial hub in India coming next after Mumbai. With a lush talent pool comprising of skilled manpower of IT professionals and industrial personnel, a conducive business environment and a favourable economy the city is set for many more epic milestones.

How it unfolded
The astounding growth of IT/ ITES industries in Chennai city has taken the peripheral towns such as Siruseri, Kelambakkam and other localities in a virtual storm. However, of all the places that have clocked high growth, Siruseri has been the biggest beneficiary in terms of all round development, perhaps on account of the IT park here.

About Siruseri
Located at a distance of around 25 kms from the main city centre, Siruseri is a south eastern suburb of Chennai, positioned en route the OMR (Old Mahabalipuram Road). In fact, one can easily reach Siruseri, as it comes approximately at the end of the IT Corridor along the OMR. Located between Navalur and Kelambakkam, Siruseri houses the SIPCOT IT Park- the largest IT Park in Asia. What’s more, the area will probably be home to a proposed six-lane highway in the future.
The Siruseri IT park

The IT Corridor was developed to give an impetus to the growth of IT companies with dedicated allotment of land for organizations that wished to build their own campus; the SIPCOT IT Park being the best case in point. Today, the IT corridor is a massive stretch of road comprising of six-lanes with localities touched by these corridors emerging as favoured places for real estate investment by NRI’s, IT professionals, HNI’s, corporates and end users.

The same can be said about Siruseri egged on by the widespread development along the IT corridor, the ticket to fame for Siruseri came about with the establishment of this IT Park. A massive commercial space located in Padur and developed on 1000 acres of land, the Park has transformed Siruseri’s landscape forever.

The IT park by SIPCOT (State Industries Promotion Corporation of Tamil Nadu) is a fully government-owned institution and boasts of all infrastructure facilities such as a dedicated sub-station for power supply, separate telephone exchange and high speed data connectivity. It is an extremely successful venture by the government and is today home to many renowned companies such as Newgen Software Technologies, Aspire Systems, Changepond Technologies, Hexaware Technologies, Cognizant Technology Solutions, IGATE Global Solutions and Syntel among other eminent names.

Notably, TCS has set up their campus on 70 acres of land at the SIPCOT IT Park. Known to be Asia’s largest IT office, the architecture is designed by the Uruguayan architect Carlos Ott. It was inaugurated on 23rd February 2001 by Danilo Astori, the vice-president of Uruguay. An award winning edifice, it houses over 30,000 employees and has provisions for accommodating over 2000 vehicles. Furthermore, it is proposed that a signature tower, 132 metres high comprising of 28 floors is underway.
The Park offers recreational activities for the employees working here with a clubhouse with gym, outdoor running circuits, swimming pools and a small golf and driving range among other facilities for them.

The panorama today

The skyline for Siruseri has altered permanently. There has been much development and land prices have touched an all time high. Residential apartments and commercial development has been fairly well balanced and there is promise for much more development on the anvil. Transportation facilities have been significantly improved and it is easy to find a good number of public buses and auto rickshaw’s from here.

Renowned educational institutions such as Chennai Mathematical Institute,Institute for Technology and Management (ITM) Business School and the Chettinad Hospital & Research Institute have set up base in Siruseri. Moreover, the Madras Diabetes Research Foundation (MDRF) has set up a hi-tech diabetes research centre here. Distinguished schools like the Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan Senior Secondary School (PSBB), Hiranandani upscale school (HUS), Sushil Hari International residential school and the Padma Adarsh Higher Secondary School among other schools are nearby.

Know amenities in life style apartments

Lifestyle Apartments Amenities


A slice of life, anyone? Or maybe an itsy bitsy piece of heaven; will that do? That’s the promise of a fine luxurious apartment and that’s what they are supposed to do, i.e. give you a home that spells L.U.X.U.R.Y and C.O.M.F.O.R.T, nothing more, nothing less.

Its common knowledge that the rich and famous like their possessions to be unique, exclusive, top of the line and perhaps one up on their next door neighbour. Wealthy people don’t mind paying a premium for something which is perceived as elite; so long as every convenience is taken care of.

The luxurious apartment market is a tough one with an aggressive contest among builders and real estate developers with each one vying for a bigger chunk of the ‘luxurious apartment’ pie. Things however can only get better for the end customer.

What sets apart a luxury apartment versus an ordinary plain-vanilla, cookie-cut house are the fine aesthetic sensibilities and the use of exemplary design that is harmoniously put together to create an extravagant urban palace. So what should one expect in a luxurious apartment? Don’t be fooled by gimmickry or false promises; here’s what you need to know about amenities in life style apartments.

Typically, you should keep an eye out for-

  1. Digital Features that use avant-garde automation
  2. A world renowned architect, perhaps an international one, who has experience in designing masterpieces world over.
  3. Some sort of novelty or newness that sets apart this project from the rest.
  4. Adherence to international standards of construction.
  5. Time-honoured construction methodologies that still hold good in today’s world.

What to expect in the house:

A luxurious home should have scope for entertaining, lots of it. Aside from space there must be state-of-the-art provisions for privacy and security. Expect features such as a private landscaped garden or an indoor pool.

The interiors layout can often be customised with mood lighting, motion detector lighting systems throughout the house, choices of wooden flooring and tiling options with marble and/ or vitrified antiskid tiles or a glass enclosure in the shower area with imported branded bathroom fittings.

The kitchen will probably come equipped with a branded modular set up including a hob, chimney, washing machine, dish washer, dryer and a microwave among other white goods. Besides, there will probably be a servant room adjoining the kitchen replete with a separate washroom area.

Nowadays, luxurious homes come with eco-friendly features such as solar panels or small windmills. Newer technologies utilise the heat emitted from air-conditioning systems to heat up water for use in bathrooms.

Digital Features

  • Luxury homes will characteristically have iPad/ smartphone enabled features such as wireless door locks with no requirement for physical keys or programmable zones with auto sensors for adjusting light, temperature and entertainment settings.
  • Sensors placed through the house with auto alerts in case of a gas leak or a fire hazard.
  • Home automation systems that include video cameras that help with surveillance and for controlling every gadget in the house, besides keeping a constant vigil on
  • Video door phone
  • Touch screen / remote controlled Panel
  • Panic switch
  • Smart cards for locks

What to expect in the common areas:

The sky is the limit and truly, many builders today are going out of their way to provide features and amenities that can make a person feel like a celebrity, every single day. You can assume that some or perhaps all of the below mentioned features would be present in an uber luxurious project-

  • An air conditioned lounge area with Wi-Fi internet connection and entertainment zones for kids and perhaps a pool table or a Lazy boy chair.
  • An Olympic sized swimming pool or an infinity pool.
  • An air conditioned gym with imported equipment.
  • A dedicated yoga/aerobic room.
  • Steam/ Sauna/ Massage Room with wet and dry areas.
  • Spa and a Jacuzzi
  • Concierge Services
  • An outstanding signature feature that distinguishes the project from others. It could be a celebrity interior decorator designing the homes or a patio on the 28th
  • A discotheque/ Café/ Bar and restaurant/ Mall or a Shopping centre.