If you're planning to buy a house, now is perhaps a good time to buy as interest rates are down and there is a huge ready-to-move-in inventory with developers that they may want to offload at a discount. Also, instead of launching new projects, most of them are focussing on completing unfinished projects, thanks to the regulatory mechanism put in place by agencies like Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). So, buyers can even look for projects that are likely to be completed within the next three to six months.
All in all it’s a buyers’ market. So, what should homebuyers keep in mind before investing in a property? Here is a checklist:
First and foremost, log on to the RERA website of the state in which you wish to invest in. In case of a soon-to-be-completed project, check whether the developer has registered his project with the regulatory authority set up in the state. Then do some research on the builder, check the number of projects the developer has completed and delivered so far.
Check for the RERA seal: Post RERA, most under construction projects are given a RERA registration number. Check for that seal. What this means is that the developer has complied with all the mandatory norms. You will also find the sanctioned building plans and details of the number of floors, towers and towers he plans to construct on the developer’s website post RERA. Look for details such as the number of units, number of towers and the number of floors sanctioned by the concerned authority
Land use/title: If you’re still not confident about the land title even with the RERA safety net in place, the concerned revenue department and the development authority can authenticate the title and land use for you. Your fears are not misplaced as some developers have duped home buyers in the past by launching residential projects on plots they don’t own. At times, developers launch projects on their own land without getting the land use changed from agriculture to residential.
Location: It’s advisable for buyers to choose the right location. See that there are proper roads leading up to the project, enough shops for daily needs, schools and hospitals are close by. Most importantly, check the distance to your workplace and the mode of transport available
FAR/purchasable FAR: In some cases, developers purchase additional FAR (floor-area ratio) during construction, which means they can build over more area than approved earlier. Armed with extra FAR, a developer can construct additional towers in the area demarcated as green, without letting the home buyers know about the changes made in the original layout plan.
Watch | How RERA is going to change your homebuying experience
Completion certificate: If you’re planning to purchase a ready-to-move-in flat or are buying a unit from the secondary market, seek information about the completion certificate of the project. It’s the only document that ensures that the developer has all approvals in place.
Is a ready-to-move-in property better than an under construction one? Well, it certainly is as you do not have to pay both rent and EMI and it reduces the delay risks associated with a property that is still getting constructed. But is it not expensive? Not so in a market where there is huge inventory available and there are good deals available if you do your homework well. Also, too much inventory in the market has helped keep a check on prices
As for under construction properties, rest assured that RERA offers a good protection as builders have to ensure that they complete the projects as per the timelines submitted by the regulatory authorities and if they do not, they will be penalised
Resale versus direct purchase: While there is not much choice available when it comes to resale properties, the scope for negotiation will depend on how desperate the seller is. But you may still have to ensure that all the legal documentation is in place. Also ensure that the seller has paid EMIs on time and there are no dues pending with the bank, builder or the maintenance office.
Capital appreciation: Remember if you are planning to buy now, buy only for self-use. This is not an investors’ market and appreciation in property prices is unlikely for the next two firstname.lastname@example.org