Finance Minister P. Chidambaram has announced a Rs 2,000 crore urban housing fund, while making luxury homes costlier by cutting abatement on service tax on a flat with a floor area of over 2,000 sq. ft, or prices exceeding Rs. 1 crore. The Budget for 2013—14 also proposed to levy a one per cent TDS on immovable properties of above Rs. 50 lakh. Besides, the Finance Minister raised tax deduction limit by Rs. 1 lakh for first time home buyers. The existing exemptions from service tax for low—cost housing and single residential units will continue.

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