- July 4, 2016
- Category: Real Estate
Buying one’s own space to live is one of the most important lifelong decision for any individual. The experience is associated with not just excitement but also at times anxiety and stress. It is the biggest and most expensive financial transaction for any individual. It thus becomes imperative to do the necessary due-diligence before finalising any property deal. Here is a basic checklist before signing on the dotted line:
- Reputation of the builder: It is important to check the history of the builder and his company. Checking the company website would not give you a complete picture. Check out his past projects and visit the people residing in them. Talking to residents who have done property dealing with the builder would provide you reliable inputs. You can ask them about time frame for completion of project and delays, if any. You can also take inputs on quality of construction, materials used by the builder and if they are facing any issues on the amenities provided.
- Location: While connectivity to work place, main roads and highways is generally checked on first, there are a lot of other things that need to be borne in mind when it comes to location. Connectivity to banks, schools, hospitals, markets, etc., also need to be reviewed. Safety is another important issue. If you or any of your family member return home late at night, how safe is the location? Further, quality of roads, frequency of public transport like autos and buses in and around the location need to be examined.
- Flat Specifications: Be clear right from the beginning on carpet area and built-up area of the flat. Carpet area is the actual usable area of a flat. Built-up area is carpet area plus the walls and door and is the base on which the cost of the flat is calculated. Ask for a detailed layout of flat with dimensions and you would be able to roughly estimate the space. Do not get deluded by sample flats. The highly customized interiors and the premium furniture offer a mesmerizing look of the flat but in reality may not be very spacious as it would appear to be.
- Essential and luxurious amenities offered: Check on essential amenities offered by the builder like water supply, electricity, water tank, lift, parking, etc. Lack of parking space has been a problematic issue with many buyers. Check whether the property premises have enough space to offer parking to potential residents. Also, enquire about upfront payment for exclusive parking spaces. Sometimes, these could act as a spoiler and affect the budget. Further, check on the luxurious amenities offered like swimming pool, gym, power generator, clubhouse, etc. Remember, more the amenities, higher would be the monthly maintenance cost.
- Resale, rental potential: This could not be the deciding factor in buying a property but it is better to have some foresight on it. While you would be obviously buying a house to stay in it lifelong, personal circumstances in the future might warrant a change in location or renting out the flat for a temporary period. So, think about the resale and rental potential of the property.
- Documentation. Ensure that the builder has got all the project approvals during the various phases of construction starting from commencement certificate in the beginning to occupancy certificate till the end. Check whether the builder has obtained all the environmental and municipal clearances and whether the property is built on residential or non-residential land. You can procure all this information from local bodies. Even the builder cannot refuse any buyer if the former is being asked to disclose all the important approvals. Intimation of Disapproval (IOD), also known as the Building Permit is one of the most critical document which should be available with the builder. It lays out conditions which the builder has to comply with during various phases of the project. For e.g., the builder may have the permission for development rights of 10 floors of a building and he may illegally construct 15 storeys. Remember the famous Campa Cola Residents case. Although the residents had paid all the legal dues to the builder and were staying for 25 years, they faced eviction from municipal authorities and drawn into a legal battle with them. It is thus imperative to ensure that the builder is adhering to all the conditions as per the approvals obtained during various phases of the construction.
To conclude, the above basic checklist would guide you in evaluating all the essential aspects of a property. These parameters could also help in shortlisting two or more properties on your watch list. So, do a comprehensive assessment of any property before you make a down payment or finalise your home loan.