The price of real estate in Delhi has been on the upswing for a quite a while now. Despite a hike in salaries and the easy availability of home loans, many people (especially those doing short stints in Delhi) do not want to invest their money in buying a house in the city. This is not a problem, as rental homes are easily available through real estate agents and homeowners.
Most Delhiites live in apartments. Although there are some apartment complexes, they are usually old and a bit decrepit. The best flats are in huge multi-family houses that have been converted into apartments (usually one per floor), and most apartments in Delhi’s nicer parts of town fall into this category.
It’s advisable to look for accommodation close to your workplace in order to keep your daily commute to a minimum (as rush hour traffic can get quite bad). Most expats prefer to live in South and Central Delhi in areas like Defence Colony, Green Park, Greater Kailash, Hauz Khas, Vasant Vihar, Safdarjung Enclave, Panchsheel Park, Jor Bagh, and Jangpura. Expat families with large housing budgets sometimes rent large farmhouses in Chattarpur, on the outskirts of Delhi. These farmhouses are usually just large houses with a lot of property but are not actually used for farming. However, they require a lot more maintenance and because they are slightly isolated, it’s a good idea to hire full-time guards if you have such a place.
South Delhi has good transport connectivity, well-equipped apartments and offers close proximity to job centres like Noida and Gurgaon. Many expats also live in Gurgaon, especially those who work in the satellite city, and while rental prices in Gurgaon are a bit lower than in Delhi, the infrastructure is not as developed and there are often power cuts that last for hours as well as water shortages.
When renting a flat or an apartment in any prime location of the city, you will be expected to enter into a formal rent agreement with the house owner. However, it is still possible to find homeowners in some parts of Delhi, who give a part of their homes or additional houses for rent without a rental agreement. This is usually done to avoid taxes, but it’s not a good idea for expats to get into such an agreement. You’ll need proof of residence in the form of a lease deed in order to register with the Foreigners’ Regional Registration Office (FRRO) and to obtain certain basic services, such as a phone or internet connection