RERA as an Act has been beneficial to buyers but this meant complete transparency from the developer’s end which brought out all the hidden rodents to the surface for clear transactions. RERA Act is the RTI (Right to information) in the real estate world, but our question here is, was it necessary? If yes, then did home buyers benefit from the Act?
Many home buyers believed that the real estate transactions were heavily skewed in favor of brokers, developers, and other middlemen. The RERA Act was set in place to protect home buyers from fraudulent activities like money laundering and to mainly establish a more streamlined process for the Realty sector. The whole purpose of the act is to basically make every real estate transaction safer by inculcating more transparency and accountability.
Ashutosh Limaye, head of research at consultancy JLL India, says while so-called ‘fly-by-night’ developers have been exiting since RERA Act was implemented, it would be unfair to think that all small players are unscrupulous. “It has nothing to do with the size or scale at which developers operate, it is about their intent. Several small players have made themselves RERA-compliant, because they want to be in this space for the long term,” Limaye says.
The Act introduced a carpet area formula for an even calculation. The carpet area is therefore defined as ‘The net usable floor area of an apartment, excluding the area covered by the external walls, areas under services shafts, exclusive balcony or verandah area and exclusive open terrace area, but includes the area covered by the internal partition walls of the apartment’.
This standardization has kept the builders away from inflating the carpet area price which works perfectly in favour of the buyer.
The Act has brought both the buyer and seller parties on a common platform by maintaining an equal rate of interest for defaulters. Before the act, the interest paid by the builder to the home buyer was less but if the buyer defaulted, the interest was higher, and this was an unfair deal that discouraged home buyers.
The buyer has every right according to the act to withdraw from the project with a full refund if the builder fails to deliver any commitments. This increased the faith of home buyers back in the whole Real Estate system and we shall give you the proof to it further.
The builder can’t take more than 10% of the cost of the apartment, villa, etc. or any other application fee before entering into an agreement of sale. This works in the buyer’s favour yet again!
Any infrastructural defect in quality, workmanship, provision or service if discovered within the first 5 years is entitled to rectification by the builder at no extra cost within 30 days and buyers can also claim compensation for the same.
The buyer has all the rights to withdraw from the project with a full refund, along with interest payable from the due date of completion until the amount is refunded. If the buyer decides to continue with the project, till the completion, he will be entitled to compensation along with interest payable from the due date of completion of the project until the project gets completed. This ensures proactive commitments and a fair process that is beneficial for both the buyer and the builder.
A defect in the title of the property can also result in compensation which is not barred by any limitation and this means there isn’t any time limit within which you need to discover the defect.
The buyer is entitled to all the information related to the project in terms of the plan, layout, execution, completion status, facilities, etc. What more could a buyer ask for?
In case the builder fails to comply with the terms of this act, the buyer can take it to the state authority set up under the act, which has the power to redress the grievances.
A MahaRERA official said, “If a homebuyer or a developer is not satisfied with the RERA order, he/she can make an appeal to the appellate board instead of approaching the high court.”
Housing sales in the top seven cities grew by 12% in the first quarter of 2018 which indicated that the act restored the faith of serious home buyers, attracted by the new environment of transparency, accountability and financial discipline back in the Real Estate sector – Anarock Property Consultants.
Around 49, 000 units were sold in the quarter, with NCR, MMR, Bengaluru, and Pune alone accounting for 80% of the sales, while the only state that experienced a 12% drop was Chennai.
Homebuyers are now encouraged to make their first home purchase because of the security provided by the state. There couldn’t be a riper season than now, to take advantage of the schemes implemented by the government and an array of firms that are trying to close the massive gaps between the desire of owning a house to turning those dreams into reality.
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