In some relief to the severely hit real estate sector, homebuyers seem to be returning to the market. Sales in the residential market grew 34% during the July-September 2020 period over the previous quarter, according to JLL Research.However, new launches were restricted, with just 12,654 units unveiled in the quarter under review — a decline of 14% quarter-on-quarter — as developers were focussed on completion of under-construction projects and clearing existing inventory.JLL Research said sales volume across markets such as Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi NCR, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Mumbai and Pune, rose to 14,415 units as compared to 10,753 units in the April-June 2020 quarter. Mumbai accounted for 29% of the total sales (4,135 units) in the quarter, while 22% of sales (3,112 units) was contributed by Delhi NCR. Growth in sales activity was also driven by stronger demand in Chennai, Hyderabad and Pune, it said.“A combination of favourable factors such as low mortgage rates [and] attractive prices combined with developers’ lucrative payment plans together reinforce the longer term potential of the sector. For end users, the next 12 months are ideal to buy a house,” Ramesh Nair, CEO and Country Head, India, JLL, said.The company said residential market activity is also being supported by renewed interest from NRIs in the third quarter of 2020, resulting in more pent-up demand in the market and increased enquiries received by developers.