Realty regulator will keep builders on a tight leash


Housing

A new law to give home buyers a better deal aims to ensure builders sell residential property on the basis of carpet area instead of ambiguous terms like “super area” while a regulator will ensure housing projects declare the status of importantcivic clearances. The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill, which the government plans to bring to Parliament in the budget session, has been framed under provisions dealing with property transactions in the concurrent list of the Constitution that applies to states, making the proposed legislation more than a model law. In a bid to try and make sure developers stick to timelines, the proposed law states that realty players will have to park 70% of funds in a particular bank account so that resources are not diverted and buyers are not left in the lurch.

make it mandatory for private developers to register all projects before sale of property and only after getting all necessary clearances, addressing a major concern of buyers about incomplete or fraudulent land acquisition. According to the bill’s provisions, failure to declare status of clearances will invite up to a maximum three years imprisonment or fine that can amount to 10% of project cost. Realty players will have to disclose project details and contractual obligations to ensure transparent, fair and ethical business practices. There can be a model agreement which is expected to reduce ambiguities in real estate transactions that not many buyers are familiar with. Builders maintain there is no need for a regulator as they are already subjected to clearances from multiple agencies. They felt the penal provisions hurt their interests, but the government might want to increase the odds in favour of consumers.

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