Construction industry

Safeguarding Customers from Builders

Jan 26 2021

Anwesha Nandy

Buying a home in India? Scared of being cheated?

Real estate has leaped the Indian subcontinent. More and more builders are coming up with schemes and townships to grasp the attention of people in need of buying houses. Safeguarding yourself from being ditched in this market is important. It is essential to know how and where to invest and certain things should be considered before buying the property.

Verify the builder

It should be noted that the builder or company is officially registered. You can check the previous or current projects being built by the builder. Most of the builders have websites showcasing their works.

Verify the project

The project should be verified if it is legally going to be built.

Check the property of the project

You should visit the site and properly note the location on which the project is to be built. Check whether the site is proper and legal for construction. You should verify if the property or land on which the construction will be taking place is in the name of the builder and not under any dispute. The construction is different from the brochures, so it is necessary to visit the site before booking the project. You can also interact with the people staying in the same neighborhood to know the location more.

Get details about the project and additional amenities

Before booking the project, it is also important that you get all the details of the projects and the extra amenities and services that will be included for example parking, common plot, general stores, and clubhouse. Lifts and emergency routes should also be noticed.

Check infrastructure plans

You should have a look at the sanctioned municipal plans and then see what changes are made in those during the construction phase. Moreover, you should also check the infrastructure plans if there are some services like metro or other infrastructure projects coming up in the vicinity which would provide you a benefit while reselling.

Note the carpet area

The carpet area is the area enclosed within the walls of the house. Usually, the brochures do not show the carpet area of the house, instead, they show the built-up and super built-up areas. The built-up area consists of an area of flat along with the area of staircase and lobby. This makes it around 25-30% more than the carpet area. You should not stay misinformed about the total area of the flat.

Check the banks financing the project

Most of the builders do not have a hand in cash flow to ensure the construction of the project. So, banks are involved in financing these projects. The construction phase work is based on the loan given by the banks. So, it is necessary to check if the project is being financed by the bank in reality.

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Calculate the total cost

Along with basic costs, there are various additional costs such as development fees, service tax, GST, preference of parking, and various other fees for amenities and services. Thus, the proper costs of everything should be taken into consideration in the total final cost.

Verify license and affiliation

The paperwork of the builder should be properly verified before going further. Various certificates should be considered and verified. This includes title deed and encumbrance for legal land issues, release certificate in case of reselling, approval from local authorities, payment receipts, taxes, etc.

Check different payment methods

Various payment options are available - Down payment, construction linked payment, time-linked payment, flexible payment. The customer should properly see all the payment options and choose according to individual convenience.

Provision of Escrow Account

An escrow account is a temporary pass-through account held by a third party during the process of a transaction between two parties. This account is used to keep the regulatory flow of funds in check. The home buyer’s money is kept in the escrow account until and unless the home and refurbishments have been received and approved by the buyer. The money is transferred to the builder only after the approval of the buyer.

Check the quality of materials used

While the construction is going on, you should visit the site and see to it that good quality material is being used as mentioned in the project details.

Note the project delivery date

The delivery of the plot after completion of construction should be noted. So that different measures can be taken in case the possession is not given in time.

Register the plot

After the possession of the house, the first thing you have to do is register it under your name with the authority in charge.

Consumer support after the violation

If there is any violation, you can file a complaint on real estate forums. Consumer courts and civil courts also take action to help the consumers.

RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Act)

As per immense complaints by the home buyers against forgery and faulty transactions done by the builders, RERA has been passed by the Government of India to safeguard the home buyers. RERA will govern not only the registration of projects, real estate agents, and builder lands but also maintain a record of details of the projects such as carpet areas, quality of material used, delivery time, and provide a lane for safe money transactions. Moreover, it will also be of great help in addressing complaints filed by the home buyers.

Brick&Bolt is an e-commerce platform that uses cutting-edge technology and state-of-the-art systems and processes to make home and commercial construction absolutely simple, transparent, and reliable for customers. The start-up connects customers to a curated set of service providers, enabling transparent pricing, managing projects to ensure adherence to approved quality & timelines, and also levying penalties on the service providers in case of any delay. The process is augmented by an AI-based engine predicting the work schedules and managing the quality and progress of projects using computer vision. Brick&Bolt is a pre-series A funded company by Sequoia Surge.

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