By Dr Sanjay Chaturvedi, LLB, PhD
Accommodation Times News Services
Government of Maharashtra have already formulated Rules for Housing Regulatory Act implementation. It should be out any moment. According to Principle Secretary Housing Shri Shrikant Singh, the public suggestions and objections are over for Rules of Housing Regulatory Act and Govt will soon establish Housing Regulatory Authority.
An endorsement of government is required for authenticity. Just like CIDCO in Vasai and Virar, where project approved gets more confidence in builder, HRA registration will enhance the goodwill of real estate and its players.
Real Estate is not regulated till recently. Every transaction process differ from other and every real estate development process is different from other. Each project has unique documentation and there is no specific set of legal title document which purchaser can vouch or investigate before purchasing. Government of India had mooted Model Real Estate Regulatory Act (RERA). Since housing is a state subject, every state has to formulate its own Real Estate Regulatory Act.
On 6th Sept 2014, Maharashtra Government enacted Housing Regulatory Act (HRA) and now rules and regulation under draft for public objections and suggestion. Let us understand what exactly we have in HRA.
The HRA will repeal MOFA ( Maharashtra Ownership Flat Act) which was governing real estate transactions in Maharashtra. Under HRA, every builder has to take license from HRA ( Housing Regulatory Authority) for each project. hence no inpidual license but project to project license will be given. After the receipt of license, builder has to put all relevant and compulsory information on HRA web site within seven days for public domain. Each and every document which authorizes builder to title of the property i.e. Conveyance Deed, Joint Development, Development Agreement, Society Redevelopment etc has to be uploaded. All permissible permissions from local self government / Municipal Corporation has to be uploaded. The HRA will certify its authenticity. Besides this, builder has to furnish details of construction finance taken from banks, private parties, ECB, FDI or source of funding the development. Minimum 20% of booking amount is must. No token is allowed to be accepted. That means no pre-launch or any prior booking unless license is taken.
The best part is, once the sale literature or offer or proposal or advertisement or promise on websites / exhibitions written or verbal is part of contract. No disclaimer can be inserted that “Plans or amenities subject to change”. Project completion, standardized agreements, license to brokers for the project and criminal punishment are some of the provisions HRA has it. We will also have Real Estate Tribunal for fast trials and quick justice just like Income Tax Tribunals. We need not go to courts but with specialized Tribunal which understand real estate industry.
In all, a great transparency level with government’s stamp. Buyer of real estate are safe with government taking all precautions to eradicate bad practice from Real Estate. Many practices like pre launch frauds, taking token and returning after three to five years, selling same unit to five different people, quoting price to international market differently then in local market, using sub standard materials etc are detailed in the HRA. Handing over society within four months of completion and getting Occupation Certificate and Building Comopletion Certificate is also mendatory now and onus is on builder to get all such certificate and obey compliance failing which harsh criminal liabilities are imposed.
Real Estate was irregular trade. Unfair trade practices by few was down grading the other hard workers and brand cautious builder who starv hard to earn reputation. Complete projects in time with quality. One has to see the past trend and should interview / intract with clients who have purchased real estate in the past. Compare historic prices and transactions happened to arrive at bargain price. Mind you, HRA do not regulate price but process.