Once bitten, home buyers now unwilling to wait
Ravi Nair booked an apartment in Kalyan back in 2010, paying the builder Rs 20 lakh for it. He was told he would receive possession latest by December 2016. Eight years later, he’s still to get possession. In retrospect, he says, he shouldn’t have gone for an under-construction project.
“There was no communication from the developer for a long time, then I approached MahaRERA and asked for interest on the amount paid. Finally there was an order where the developer was asked to pay me interest on the amount I paid. I am still waiting for possession, and even today I don’t know when I will get it,” Nair said.
Nair is not alone. There are thousands like him, who are facing delayed possession and suffering from the uncertainty of not knowing when they will get their houses. Anirban Dasgupta is one such man. “After what I have learnt, I will never be able to trust under-construction properties. If I ever look to invest elsewhere, I will go only for a ready possession project,” he said.
Consumer forum activists say they are aware of this trend. Shirish Desh pande, chairman of the Mumbai Grahak Panchayat, said the waiting period and the uncertainty about when the houses will be delivered mean most buyers aren’t interested in under-construction projects, even choosing to pay extra to move to an apartment immediately.
Pankaj Kapoor, MD of Liases Foras, a real estate research firm, said the percentage of ready possession properties in the market has risen from 5% to 15%. “Apart from risks involved in under-construction projects, GST is another important aspect buyers look for. Ready possession properties will help them save 12 per cent GST directly, meaning they actually end up saving money here,” Kapoor said.