Nagpur: Co-operative registrar suspends Anandam Society’s president, secretary & treasurer – ET RealEstate

NAGPUR: The joint registrar of cooperatives has ordered a housing society to charge only Rs25,000 as transfer fee for a flat sale. Registrar RD Kausadikar also suspended the president, secretary and treasurer of ‘Anandam Tower-A Housing Society’, for allegedly harassing Charanjit Singh Arora and his wife, and forcing them to pay Rs1.74 lakh as transfer fee on purchasing a flat in their scheme.

The registrar also declared the three office bearers ineligible for occupying any post till end of their tenure. They were charged with not complying with earlier orders of the deputy registrar, who also ruled in the flat owner’s favour.

Arora, 76, had purchased a flat in the upmarket flat scheme in 2018. He got the order in his favour some 2.5 years after he filed a case with the joint registrar for cooperative housing societies.

Arora, who did not appoint a lawyer for his case, told TOI such issues are rampant in housing societies, with many senior citizens harassed under one or the other pretext. He is now set on helping other citizens facing similar issues.

Anandam Society president Rajendra Choudhari, however, termed the registrar’s order ‘faulty’, claiming Arora had failed to pay maintenance charges since 2018. “The charges were towards maintenance dues, and it was the collective decision of society members to stop their services for recovery, and not to allot them share certificates till then. Till date, he hasn’t paid the maintenance even after being directed by the registrar. We were surprised by the registrar’s order,” he told TOI, adding they will again approach Kausadikar with more proof.

Arora had purchased Flat no. 1504 from builder Goldbricks Infrastructure Limited on August 13, 2018, with his retirement savings. It had been earlier allocated to Amit Agrawal, but the registry wasn’t completely, so it was sold to Arora. Four days later, the society issued him notice to pay Rs1.74 lakh as transfer fee. Even after he pointed out that he had purchased the flat directly from the builder, the society office-bearers rejected his claims and stopped his garbage collection and other services.

Arora approached the deputy registrar’s office contending that transfer fee should either be 2.5% of the price or Rs25,000. In December, the deputy registrar directed the society not to charge more than Rs25,000 from the applicant. The society was also told to transfer the security deposit, corpus fund and other amounts in Arora’s name as early as possible and also enrol him in the members’ list.

After the society failed to comply with the orders, Arora moved an application before the joint registrar, who summoned its office bearers on March 3. Their lawyer informed that the deputy registrar’s decision had been challenged in the high court.

Kausadikar then sought the opinion of Nagpur District Cooperative Housing Societies Federation, which granted no objection for action against Anandam Society, since the latter wasn’t its member. Anandam Society also failed to produce any record of its claim that registrar’s order was challenged in the HC.

Kausadikar then asked Arora to deposit maintenance charges with the society, which would not charge any transfer fee from him and restore all services to him available to other flat members.

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Homebuyers should pay upkeep fee after handover: Naredco – ET RealEstate

NOIDA: The National Real Estate Development Council (Naredco) has sent a list of suggestions to UP-Rera’s office upholding UP Apartment Promotion of Construction Ownership and Maintenance Act, 2010 and endorse its bylaws on handover of flats to apartment owners’ associations (AOA) after residents move into their flats.

The letter has clarified some liabilities of the promoters post-completion of projects and during the transition of the properties from builders to buyers until formation of the AOAs.

“There was some discordance between the UP-Rera norms on maintenance and what is stated by the UP Apartment Act. So, we clarified these points with UP-Rera through a written letter highlighting some points,” R K Arora, the chairman of UP Naredco said.

Naredco’s suggestions states that homebuyers need to start paying maintenance from the date of handover of possession letters, maintenance charges will be charged according to the maintenance agreement or services provided. The promoter is mandated to enable the formation of an association or society post 60% of handover with the building completed and completion certificate obtained.

Registration needs to be done according to the UP Apartment Act and final notice regarding AOA be sent to the promoter by the registrar. Project can be designed phase-wise although common services like water supply, electricity, STP are common for the complete project and the promoter will be in charge of the construction and other allied support for the handed over property till two years after completion and handover of flats.

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What can a property buyer do to fix maintenance issues? – ET RealEstate

NEW DELHI: A high-rise society offers a bundle of amenities within its premises to residents. Be it security, lifts, uninterrupted water and electricity supply or other facilities such as a park or a gym to give a sense of comfort to residents.

For residents to continue enjoying these services, maintenance plays a vital role. Without efficient maintenance, it becomes difficult to sustain services for which one buys a house in a housing complex.

Across India, maintenance agencies are hired to take care of the upkeep of a housing society. A facility manager oversees and ensures that everything is working fine and services are not hampered.

However, the quality of maintenance often remains a key issue of dispute between the builder and buyers. In case a society fails to upkeep the maintenance what exactly can residents do?

Joseph Reddi, senior vice president (Operations), Knight Frank India, suggests, “Pre-possession inspection is very important. First time the developer checks it and then when it is ready for handover everything related to construction related defects, fire fittings and other installations need to be checked. Snags like small holes or cracks are bound to be there, but fundamentals related to construction quality cannot be ignored”.

“If the construction quality is not good or there is a design defect then even the facility management can’t do much. Because of that, there are tussles between the agency and residents. So, buyers should do due diligence before possession,” explained Reddi.

Completion Certificate and Occupancy Certificate are two important approvals that a society has to take before possession is offered to residents. However, residents of several housing societies complain of faults in the fire equipment, lifts, common area facilities and other issues.

Abhilash Pillai, partner, Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas says, “Regulators are supposed to inspect the buildings and ensure it is fit for occupation before giving a completion or occupancy certificate. These certificates have a disclaimer that under law we do not have any liability towards this building. Hence, even regulators are not enforcing this properly. Consumers are forced to take possession as and when they are offered.

The RERA legislation talks about five years structural defect warranty but this still needs to be tested and evolved by the courts. Buyers should inspect the building before taking possession and ask the builder to correct any defect they find. Those who have taken defected possession can go to consumer courts and seek redressal of their issues”.

A south-India based company conducts home inspection during the buying process and prepares a report for buyers before the house is occupied or possession is accepted.

Sudhindra Naib, CEO, HomeInspeKtor, explains, “We prepare a 360-degree inspection report of the house and check flooring, blemishes, electrical and plumbing fittings etc. To determine the house quality, we have thermal cameras to check the moisture within the wall which cannot be seen with naked eyes. The house inspection report contains photos, issues and a to-do list which a buyer can take to the developer and ask him to fix it. Several developers in Bengaluru have welcomed this report and are ready to rectify the defects after seeing the report.”

A faulty inspection by regulators at the time of giving approvals lead to bigger problems at later stages. A faulty construction creates problems for residents who ultimately end up in legal forums to get these addressed. This is a common problem across many cities in the country. Buyers’ awareness is vital to inspect a building they are going to inhabit and get the same inspected before accepting possession. One can do it themselves or if possible, hire an expert to check the quality of the building.

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Income hit, Gurugram residents seek upkeep fee cut – ET RealEstate

GURUGRAM: Residents of some housing societies in Gurugram are demanding the reduction of maintenance charges citing financial instability and loss of jobs due to the pandemic.

They have also alleged that maintenance agencies have reduced their manpower, affecting the quality of their work, and so the upkeep fees should be brought down.

Yashesh Yadav, a resident of Vatika India Next in Sector 83, said people are already facing a lot of problems due to Covid-19, with many having lost their jobs. “It’s been seven months since the pandemic hit us and every sector has been badly affected. It has become very difficult for us to meet our expenses and also pay a high amount as maintenance charges. We have requested the maintenance agency to waive off at least 30% of the charges till the situation improves,” Yadav said.

Residents also alleged that the maintenance agency has failed to provide basic facilities despite taking the full amount and also sought a financial audit of the agency’s accounts. Lokesh Yadav, general secretary of K-Block RWA, Vatika India Next, said: “During the lockdown period, the maintenance agency reduced manpower significantly. This badly affected common services in the society, including cleanliness, waste disposal and security. Even after Unlock, only 50% of the maintenance staff is working.”

“In our block, there are over 600 flat owners who are paying between Rs 2,000 and Rs 3,000 as monthly maintenance fees. We have been demanding a financial audit of maintenance agency’s accounts for the last three years, but they have failed to comply,” he added.

Meanwhile, the society’s maintenance agency, Enviro, said that they have adhered to all government norms to fight Covid and continue to safeguard the township against the infection without passing the additional cost incurred to the residents. “We performed quite well during and post the lockdown. We ensured that the security and maintenance staff were given onsite accommodation along with food and water to help prevent the spread of infection within the township. This helped in seamless operations during lockdown,” said AK Singh, CEO of Enviro.

“As a result, the expenditure increased substantially and we bore it without passing it onto the residents. These measures are still in effect and we shall continue to enforce them without looking at the cost incurred,” he added.

Residents of Indiabulls Centrum Park in Sector 103 also sought a reduction of the upkeep fee. “Since we are paying the full maintenance charges, we should get full services. But that is not the case here,” said Pradeep Rawat, president of Centrum Park RWA.

The society’s maintenance agency couldn’t be reached for a comment.

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