Published On: Thu, Oct 14th, 2010

Terrace and Open Space

By Advocate Chhaya Khamkar
Open terrace:- means terraces which are otherwise not in the exclusive possession of any of the members.

Open space:- means an area, forming a integral part of the site, left open to sky.

Generally water tanks, Societies Office, Lift rooms etc. are on the terrace, however, builder with a motive of profit construct terrace flat. The said terrace flats are sold by the builders to promoters who have a wrong impression that they are the owners of the open space adjacent to their flat. The open space adjacent to the terrace is the property of the society. The member does not have a right on the terrace and it is the society which always owns the terrace and can use the open space keeping in view the overall interest of all the members of the society. Even in Municipal Corporation records the same is shown as open space.
Permission for use of terrace or open space of the society
The provisions under the Bye-laws No. 171, the open space adjacent to the terrace is the property of the society. On written application by any member of the society the Committee may allow temporary use of the terrace or available open space of the societies building, for any function, subject to such restrictions and on payment of such charges to the society as the meeting of the General Body of the society may decide. The Committee may, with the previous permission of the Local Authority, if needed, allow exhibition of advertisement boards on any part of the building including terrace, on such terms and conditions as are approved by the General Body Meeting.

Restriction for use of open space of the society
The provisions under the Bye-laws No. 170, there are restrictions that the Society shall not let out or give on leave and license basis or permit any subletting, giving on leave and license basis any open space available under the stair case or to any person whether the member of the society or not, for any purpose whatsoever.

Repair of Terrace
The society is the owner of the property and it is the responsibility of the society to repair the terrace. It may be emphasized that members residing on the top floor have a common complaint of leakage from the terrace. The members residing on the top floor cannot insist for putting up tiles on the terrace. The society depending upon its financial position may even put tar on the terrace.

The provisions under the Bye-laws No. 160, the damaged ceiling and plaster thereon in the top floor flats, on account of the leakage of the rain water through the terrace the Society is responsible to carry out the repairs by the societies cost.

The member who is residing on top floor and there is leakage at roof of the flat and, therefore, urgent repairs to be undertaking by member. On completion of the repair the member can claim reimbursement of an amount with the interest for the repairs of the terrace as well as the parapets walls. It is necessary that the member claiming for reimbursement of repairs to the roof of his flat and not to the terrace. It is the responsibility of the society to find out whether the leakage is through any flat or through terrace. In the judgment delivered by the Bombay High Court in the case of Humble Home Co-Op. Hsg. Soc. Ltd has held that the Society is responsible to reimbursement of amount with the interest for the urgent repairs terrace and the parapets wall to the member who undertake the repair, and also held that the claim of ownership of the terrace above the roof is irrelevant.

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  1. Ram says:

    Which Act are applicable your above article?

    What is the time period of repairing terrace by builder?

  2. Amit says:

    Need your Advice:
    I am staying on 4th Floor at Andheri ( Cooperative Housing Society ), and there is a heavy leakage from the Ceiling in Bedroom, Bathroom, Hall and Kitchen and Lobby.
    We have requested the Flat Owner to carry out the repair, but he is not giving proper reply, and as he feels that he is wealthy, he always says that, I don’t have time, you ask for the quotation, get it approved from me and then we will see, till then, the leakage has ruined the entire thing.   We have tried the temporary solution, but even then it is not working, and now we are suffering.
    He was the Chairman of our Society few years back, and he is knowledgeable, he is not giving attention to our request.  We have also written a letter to the society, but they are also not taking any action.
    Please advice, what to do and how to do? Please send your reply at:  amittheace@yahoo.com

  3. Bharat Gadge says:

    I am staying on 3rd Floor at Badlapur ( Cooperative Housing Society ), and there is a heavy leakage from the Ceiling in Bedroom, Bathroom, Hall and Kitchen and Lobby. heavy leakage from his own terrace flat.
    We have requested the Flat Owner to carry out the repair, but he is not giving proper reply, and as he feels that he is wealthy, he always says that, I don’t have time, you ask for the quotation, get it approved from me and then we will see, till then, the leakage has ruined the entire thing. We have tried the temporary solution, but even then it is not working, and now we are suffering.
    He was the Chairman of our Society few years back, and he is knowledgeable, he is not giving attention to our request. We have also written a letter to the society, but they are also not taking any action.

    • admin says:

      Repairs of internal leakage is society’s duty. You must put it on record and resolve in AGM, MC meetings. Give final notice to member and society and put cc to Dy. Registrar and local police station.

  4. prasad says:

    we are residing in a complex having twelve units and two of them are duplex units which were built illegally on the open terrace and sold, latter the owners of the duplex owners got them regularized under Building Regularization scheme.
    There are set backs left on the duplex house, Now one of the duplex unit owner claiming that the set backs are balconies and are part of their duplex house and as other owners of the apartment are not using it; has encroached the said portion.
    Some of the owners objected to it saying that the set backs are part of the open terrace and it comes under common area. The sale deed of that duplex house owner does not show any title to her.
    Can you please clarify whether that such set back comes under open terrace or open balcony.

  5. single says:

    Water leakage from above flats…

    Why should water leakages from the flats above to the flats below not be attended by the Cooperative Housing Society Managing Committee?

    Does any society member take permission of the flat owners staying below his flat for his opinion before carrying out the Repairs and Renovations of his above flat?

    Is it not the Society Managing Committee who grants permission for the Repairs and Renovations of the flat to its members?

    Is not the Society responsible for the so many other Repairs of the Society?

    Does any one force a society member to buy the terrace flat? Many a times a premium amount is paid for such flat.

    It is bought out of choice so why should the society do the repairs of the terrace leakages?
    Why then in the case of Terrace Repairs, it becomes a society responsibility?

    Any Answers: Do the solicitors have any opinion?

    Can the Cooperative Housing Society Registering Authority give any opinion?

    If the Managing Committee is not taking any responsibility to repair such negligent water leakages in the flats.. they should not be authorised to give repair permissions.

    Grieved members who suffer from such water leakage in their flats due to the work carried out above their flats should report such matters with photographs to:

    Local Area Municipality (Buildings Department).

    Lodge a Police Complaint in their area.

    Report it to the respective ward Deputy Registrar of Cooperative Society.

  6. ashok jaiswar says:

    I have lodged a case in Co-op. Court in 1999 for leakage from roof due to which the internal plaster and my furniture etc have been damaged, my son escaped just by fraction of seconds, which is being draged till date on some or the other at the behest of the Society MC because the building is likely to go under Redevelopment, I along with my family have sufferred a lot and are sufferring till date. I would like to know how can I defend myself in the Co-op. Court as I have a strong belief that thier advocate / MC Member have strong hold in deraging the matter. I will be mush greatfull if you can help me and provide me with few judgements on the issue.

  7. Dear sir,

    I have my flats on the name of my sons wifes Mrs.Anita M.Jain and Mrs. Harsha V,Jain flat nos.701 and 702 on 7th floor of society building. The name of society is PEARL RESIDENCY C.H.S.LTD (Regd.) no. BOM/W-KW/Hsg/TC/14022/2007-2008 dtd.31.10.2007. Building is situatyed at Dawood baug, Behind Sagar Shopping Centre,J.P.Road, Andheri West,Mumbai 400-058.

    Since last six years I am getting rain water in our both flats due to the leakage of building terrance. Verbally I have complaint to society all members and society committe also so many times. There after I issued my complaint letters to society on the name of Chairman and Secretary many times. I have shown the condition of my flats to all members and in the general metting of dated 21st Sept.2014 it was passed to repair the entire terrace and building water tank also.

    Secretary and Chairman played many games with me and till date they have not repaired the terrace and water tank.Now rainy season is very near. During the leakage period of six years the condition of my both flats became very rough.Walls and roughs are spoiled very well. Water dropping in my flats and ladies get much problem to clean the rain water from the floorings. They are tired from last six years.

    I made a complaint to BMC K West ward and building engineer looked by both flats and he was much shoked to see the condition of flats and new building. He said there will be big lafda and I replied him start the same immediately. He tooked various many photo graphs of flats, building terrace, building water tank too. He served notice to secretary and chairman on 24.2.2015 no. Do-III/AEBR/KW/381/716/SE-61 but sorry uptill today nothing is done.

    I contacted again the BMC and they replied they will visit again longwith higher authority and check the flats again but till date they have not came. They were also said me my complaints is right and they will take action.

    I have contacted to The office of the deputy registarter co-op society K West gr.floor, room no. 69, Mhda building,Bandra east zand submitted them also my complaint on dated 11.3.2015 and sorry no body came to check the possition of flats.

    Sir I am in much tension tried my best to contact BMC and Deputy registar also and reminded by persional visit and by phones also. I am a senior cityzen age 73 having problem of diabities,heart etc.

    I request you to kindly show me the way of my same problem and kindly reply me by e.mail. Kindly help me for my this problem and highly oblige.

    Thanking you,

    Yours faithfully,
    Sohanlal Jain.
    Tel. 022 26773888
    pearl Residency, 7th floor,
    behind sagar shopping centre
    opp. P.K. Jewellers
    J.P.road, Andheri West,Mumbai 58

    • admin says:

      It is purely duty of the society to repair the terrace without any cost to you. BMC and Registrar are not competent authority. Complain to society in writing, if they do not repair then repair yourself and deduct such amount from bills to be paid to the society with interest.

  8. rizwan says:

    Dear Sir,
    i stay at Mira Road(E) , I have some question , i need your support & help to find solutions, Q.1 if any member of society want to renovate his/her flat ( extra Toilet ,increase size of windows , Asbester sheet on terrace (terrace allowted to owner by builder at Top floor,if such types of renovation work want to do by owner of flats ,is he need approval from only from society or from local Municipality authority , if that person is secreatary of society from whom he/she will take permission/ approval to start renovation work, if he/she did without approval such type of act becouse he say i am secretary i do not want approval from any one or just say i discussed with Treasurer/ chairman they ok then i started my renovation work.as a secretary can do it .without passing resolution in a meeting , if not what heighest penalty for him.please reply .regds Rizwan

    • admin says:

      Any material alternation needs Municipal permission. A written permission from Managing committee is must.

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