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Feeling cheated by your builder? Here’s what you can do

When investing in real estate, one of the most common advice that experts give is to do a due diligence on the builders. This essentially means checking on the developers’ past projects, quality of construction, delivery schedules etc.  The realty industry is plagued by many fly by night operators who cannot be trusted. It is therefore always prudent to invest in a builder who is affiliated with a governing body such as CREDAI.

CREDAI which stands for Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Associations of India is a body of developers that has been formed to regulate the realty industry, promote development and transparency in all dealings. All members of CREDAI are forced to follow a code of conduct which covers vital aspects such as launching projects only after getting all approvals, detailed area statements of the saleable area, uniform agreement clauses for all buyers, terrace rights, conveyance of 100% UDS , delivery as per commitment etc.

However many times, despite our best efforts be feel deceived by our builders. What does one do in that case?

1)    The first step of redressal is to approach the developer directly. Most developers today are very customer oriented and would gladly oblige the buyer or offer a compensation if required.

2) If the developer is a member of CREDAI and in case he is not obliging, the grievance can be taken up with the CREDAI Chapter in the city having the Customer Redressal Forum to find solution. You can file a complaint online by clicking here.

  • Once the complaint is received, it is duly filed, serial numbered and sent to the members against whom the complaint has been filed.
  • He then has to respond within a stipulated time from the date of the receipt of the letter. In case the response within the said period is not received, the same is to be brought to the notice of the Grievance Committee for action. The receipt of the comments from the Member, same shall be sent to the complainant.
  • If deemed necessary by the committee, the members of the committee may carry out inspection at the site.
  • If the Complainant is not satisfied by the reply of the Member and if issue is not resolved the committee shall call both the parties for personal hearing and tries to resolve the issue with a suitable order and close the matter

3) While CREDAI is a governing body that functions on a national level, there are also many such local bodies, who (if the builder is a registered member) can guide the consumer. For instance BRA-I (Bangalore Realtors Association India), an arm of NAR (National realtors association) in Bangalore has a special grievance cell for consumers. To know more about such associations click here.

4) Consumers who have bought property with non CREDAI builders can approach the National Consumer Helpline (1800-11-4000) and CORE (www.core.nic.in) website. To understand how the national consumer helpline in India works to address a consumer complaint click here.

5) Alternately the consumer can also file a complaint against the unfair practices of the builders before the Competition Commission of India which has been empowered to investigate anti-competitive practices and impose stringent penalties on the offenders. A fully functional committee with a Chairperson and six members appointed by the Parliament, the commission, works towards protecting the rights of the consumers. You can learn more about how to file a complaint with CCI by clicking here.

6) The last resort for an aggrieved consumer is to take legal action by filing a case in the consumer / civil / criminal court depending on the nature of the issue.

Image: By Mark Ahsmann (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Lakshmi Datta Arun for IndiaProperty.com

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20 comments

  1. Bisheshwar R Tiwari

    Dear Sir,

    I am son of a retired Air Force Personal, My father has served this country for 37 years. After retirement my father has taken a land @ Bangalore and paid amount of Rs. 13.55 lakh to the dealer.

    The dealer has done GPA from Registrar office of the land and soon after the GPA my father got a Legal notice from the land lord that the GPA is invalid as they haven’t got any amount from the dealer. After that my father start approaching the dealer and the dealer Mr. Arun Singh of M/s Aaryan Estate didn’t gave any response to him and he came in depression and died due to heart attack in 2014. Since, then we are approaching the agent and he is neither giving us land nor refunding the money.

    We request you to pls look into the matter and help us to get our money back.

    Regards,
    Bisheshwar R Tiwari
    Mobile No. 93239 07042

    • Hi,

      We have forwarded your query to our legal team. It will be answered shortly.

      Team IndiaProperty

    • In all the transactions involving the power of authority – onus is on the
      purchaser to ensure that the POA is property drafted, correctly executed,
      valid and registered as a stamped document in the same SRO in which the
      proposed property transaction is going to be registered.

      Even then, the PoA term has to be present and it should be live and valid
      at the time of the transaction.

      Many builders/developers used to do this for joint development and for
      earlier exemption of stamp duty on PoA assignment. So, this was very common.

      But in your case, as the transaction was done through a GPA – do you have
      the valid, registered and executed copy for your reference? If available,
      that could be a defence to you that the transaction was per the Act.

      So, please take a copy of the registered POA and reply to that legal notice
      along with it to first register the fact that your transaction was valid.

      Team IndiaProperty

  2. Hi,

    I have purchased a flat in Sanjana Brindavan,Kasavanahalli,Sarjapur Road,Bangalore during Dec -2014 after seeing the property from your site. As agreed by builder, the flat is supposed to be completed by June-2015. But so far, there are many amenities not completed till date. Also the transformer is not yet installed due to a case on this property. The case number is 3881/2014. When asked both builder and Land owner, they are blaming each other. Also many flat owners are already occupied and bescom is threatening to disconnect the temporary power. Builder/Land owner are least bothered about the people staying in flats.

    Request you to please suggest on this serious issue.

    Thanks,

    • Hi,

      This pertains to the hand over and take over issues of the apartment covered under civil laws and general practice. As an association and apartment owners you can formally call for a mediation between the builder and the power authority.

      Team IndiaProperty

      • Thanks for the reply. Both builder and Landlord are making fools to all flat owners from one year. Please guide us how to proceed if they are not listening to us.

  3. hello i want to know whether do we require to pay extra money for parking space as i have heard that builder cannot charge for parking space

  4. I am from middle class family working with one of retail company, currently I am staying on rent with my family in my life my big dream was to have our own house so in 2011 I had a booking in Man reality Manopus project located at miraroad,

    I had booked a flat while referring all the qualities, amenities and timeline of position, at the time of booking builder Mr. Mansukhani and team has shown the sample flat with agreed amenities and they have confirmed that the said project will get handover by end of 2013, after a long awaited and long push I have done my registration in Mar’15 and as per the agreement builder has to hand over the said flat within six month time, But till date builder is not reverting by when they will hand over the flat and they have also reduced the qualities of materials and amenities which they have agreed before booking,

    I am continually following up with them but no one is reverting and I had asked for rent compensation but they have refused the same we had made a group approx. 200+ people facing a similar issue with the same project but there is no revert from builder side

    They have started new booking for Thane Project Man valley / shivneri but are not handovering the committed project they are using our hard earned money in to some other project and in new project what is the guarantee that they will not repeat the same thing again they will collect the booking amount and they will stop responding to the flat buyers

    Hence requesting you to please help to get our own dream home with agreed amenities and qualities

    • Hi,

      We are advisory only and we can only provide you information or guidance for a particular situation. Your case is understood. As there are a lot of people involved, trust you would have formed an association for all the affected people. Try to proceed as a forum and approach the builder. There would be definitely some solution. With the new act in place, you can also file a complaint with all the affected people signing it. It will work.

      Team IndiaProperty

  5. Dear Sir
    I had paid 6 lakhs and booked a 3000 sqft plot in blue valley properties 2007 as investor .
    Paid balance amount in june 2010 and a plot no.220 was allotted .
    Total investment is 15 Lakhs .
    Sale deed was registered in 2011 after repeated requests.
    I realised after this that I have been deceived. There is no plot 220 in the layout
    But only in the paper and the sale deed.
    The chairman of the company has been dodging me by giving
    false commitments since then. One time he says that he will give alternate plot
    and another time he offers to pay market value .
    This has been going on for the last 5 years . These days he is very rude to me .
    I lost all trust in him . being a senior citizen Iam finding tough . I have been
    running after this for the last 5 years .

    What shall I do to recover the plot which I had paid .
    Looking forward for a solution .

    Yours faithfully
    Jayadevan

    • Hi,

      You can formally send a legal notice on this. Advocate while drafting the notice would take into account the agreement, commitment, payment, delivery details and would send the notice accordingly.

      Team IndiaProperty

  6. Hi

    I participated in Mandola Vihar yojna of Multistory Housing scheme at Sector 4 & 5, at Saharnpur Road, loni, Ghaziabad floated by UPAVP. The application money was deposited in December 2011. In the brochure it was informed that the construction would be completed within 24 months of application. Vide letter dated July 2012 I was informed that my application has been accepted and I was asked to deposit the remaining cost in six quarterly instalment starting in July 2012 to Oct.2013.
    I deposited first three instalments in time and after that could not make payments due to financial crises.
    The authority has failed to offer possession even after a lapse of over 4 ½ years . I want to opt out of the scheme. Would I be able to get the refund of the money deposited by me as application fee, instalments and service tax. What would be the possibility of interest? Kindly suggest as I need to get the finance on urgent basis to bear the cost of my medical expenses.

    With regards

    • Hi,

      We will have to check all the documents for the events of cancellations, refund rules etc. All would have been frozen at the initial stage and per that scheme if cancellation is possible and if such cancellations are entitled for refund, you might proceed on it.

      Team IndiaProperty

  7. Hi, we have problem in handing over the flat by our developer with proper environment clearance and completion certificate. It is a community apartments and it crossed more than 2.5 years of actual hand over date. we haven’t got any compensation as per agreement for the delay however they allowed some flat owners to occupy by servicing power with own builder cost before knowing about this incomplete posession. But they recently dropped off that approach and asking to take over by ourselves but no updates or proper action for moving to handover as agreed. Kindly advice best way to handle our worsecase for all of innocent buyers. We are looking for the option to resolve the problem positively. Thank you.

    • Hi,

      How many people are stuck like this? How many apartments are there in total? How many have already been handed over? Please create a network, as such a network will always have a greater say in the matter. Please list down your requirements on priority. It will enable you to speak to the builder and try a give and take approach. Is the construction complete and are the flats ready for occupation at the present or occupied without completion?

      Team IndiaProperty

      • 260 apartments owners are totally in troble and almost more than 180 flat handed over without competion certificate. Approximately more than 100 owners occupied before knowing issue. We don’t know what kind of consequences will face from builder if this matter is spreaded. We are in strong need of environment clearance, completion certificate and government electricity on priority. Could you advice what are current possibilities from National green court or government to get EC and approach by builder ? Is there any other way to push builder act fast on this matter? Please advise. Thank you..

  8. Hello. We booked a flat wth Marwin Construction at Goregaon West. Proprietor Mr Srinivas Basa. PH 9167948393/ off _022 28782749. We paid an amount of RS 23 78500/_ 2 years back .till now no construction work has started so we asked him to refund. .he paid us 10 lakhs. For the balance amount with interest cheques have been issued by him. Which got bounced continuously due to lack of funds. Please help us in recovering the as mount. Of 16 37000/_.looking forward for a favourable response

    • Hi,

      This happens in many places. You have few options. Either you can proceed u/s 138 of Negotiable Instruments Act for cheque bouncing and make them criminally liable OR you can approach them stating you would take appropriate legal action under criminal proceedings for cheque bouncing or civil proceedings for delay OR can associate with others who have the same issue to make it through a joint forum which would be more effective.

      Team IndiaProperty

  9. Need advice on a booking I made for a 2bhj in Ahmadabad through Adani group. The application form stated a cancellation policy which was deduction of INR 50000 if cancelled within first month. I cancelled within a few days of the booking and requested refund. They are now stating a company policy of refunding amount after deduction of INR50000 across one year. I have not signed any such document agreeing to this condition. Pls adv what I should do in this case

    • Hi,

      Did you pay any advance? Was the advance returned in full or was only some part of it returned on cancellation? If you have not signed any document, what were the papers provided on booking? How was the money paid? Whether it was a bank payment or given as cash? How was the advance received from them? Any idea about how many cancellations happened and what is the status of booking at present? When did this transaction happened? Please provide further details.

      Team IndiaProperty

      Team IndiaProperty

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