Monday, 11 June 2018

BMC's new policy on dilapidated buildings in Mumbai may boost redevelopment


The new policy lists detailed guidelines for declaring private and municipal buildings in the city in C-1 category (dangerous and unsafe)



MUMBAI: The BMC has uploaded its new policy on dilapidated buildings on its website, which civic officials say will speed up the redevelopment process. Disputes between tenants and owners often lead to a delay in vacating a building and redevelopment drags on for years, said civic officials


The new policy lists detailed guidelines for declaring private and municipal buildings in the city in C-1 category (dangerous and unsafe); it doesn’t cover Mhada buildings, cess properties, and port trust and defence properties.


Under the new policy, the BMC will grant sanction for redevelopment—intimation of disapproval—only after an agreement providing permanent alternative accommodation in a new building or a settlement is arrived at between the tenants and landlord. No commencement certificate will be issued too till then. Also, if a BMC employee refuses to vacate a C-1 category building, despite alternative accommodation being provided, a departmental inquiry will be conducted against him for endangering the life and property of himself and others, and he will be suspended from service, pending inquiry. In case the occupier is a tenant, the agreement licence with BMC will be terminated and he will be evicted.


The BMC also introduced five technical advisory committees for the suburbs, the island city and municipal buildings to expedite the process of resolving disputes between tenants and owners over structural audits. Currently, there is only one such committee.



Monday, 4 June 2018

Cabinet clears amendments to insolvency and bankruptcy code


Minister for Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad, briefing reporters after the Cabinet meet said, "I cannot disclose anything because it's a new legislation except to reinforce that the Cabinet has approved it"



NEW DELHI: The Cabinet today cleared amendments to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), incorporating changes suggested by a government appointed panel.


Minister for Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad, briefing reporters after the Cabinet meet said, "I cannot disclose anything because it's a new legislation except to reinforce that the Cabinet has approved it".


Asked if the Cabinet has cleared some relief measures for home buyers as per the recommendations of the panel, Prasad said, "there is something called constitutional protocol. An Ordinance till it is approved by the President, I cannot speak about the details".


A 14-member Insolvency Law Committee had made suggestions to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, including addressing woes of home buyers and making recoveries easier for lenders.


The panel had suggested that home buyers should be treated as financial creditors, which will allow them to equitably participate in an insolvency resolution process.

The panel has also suggested relaxations for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises(MSMEs) under the IBC.





Monday, 28 May 2018

Only 10% registration of brokers bugs MahaRERA


A year after the implementation of the Real Estate Regulatory Act (RERA), only 14,000 real estate brokers are registered with Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA)




PUNE: Concerned over the dismal registration figures of realty agents, the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority has approached the Confederation of Real Estate Brokers’ Association of India to push up the numbers.


A year after the implementation of the Real Estate Regulatory Act (RERA), only 14,000 real estate brokers are registered with Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA). With more than a lakh of brokers in the state, the number of registration is less than 10%.


MahaRERA secretary Vasant Prabhu told TOI that the dismal number of registrations was a concern for the authority and they wanted the Confederation of Real Estate Brokers’ Association of India (Crebai) to ensure that all their members registered, either individually or through a company, with MahaRERA.


Prabhu said, “We have directed Crebai to ensure that all their members associated with the ongoing projects register with MahaRERA. Citizens should go for deals with a MahaRERA registered broker only.”


MahaRERA has mandated that any broker who wants to sell apartments in a registered project needs to be registered with the real estate authority.


According to Crebai, MahaRERA has brought a form of regulation for the brokers. But of the 1.5 lakh brokers, nearly 80% are dealing with re-sale properties, who do not fall under the ambit of MahaRERA.


“Some kind of security measure should be given by MahaRERA to ensure that all brokers register. Also, our demands of standardizing the commission should be addressed by MahaRERA,” said Milind Kamdar, the president of the Maharashtra branch of Crebai.


“Though we are made liable for any violation, no rules have been made to protect our rights. Many a times, builders and buyers do not pay us our brokerage and there are no provisions to penalize them,” said another broker.


MahaRERA officials stated that they would be following up with Crebai regularly to ensure that the number of registered brokers increased. They would also conduct awareness drives to ensure citizens approach registered brokers only.





Monday, 21 May 2018

Residential sales in top 8 cities grew 13% in 2017-18: Report


Affordable housing continued to be the mainstay of the demand as the contribution of this segment to the overall sales in tier I cities



MUMBAI: Residential sales across top 8 tier I cities of India has grown 13% during the financial year 2017-18 (April-March) with Mumbai Metropolitan Region witnessing maximum growth of 25%, showed data from Liases Foras Ratings & Research.


Affordable housing continued to be the mainstay of the demand as the contribution of this segment to the overall sales in tier I cities including Mumbai, Delhi-NCR, Bengaluru, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata and Ahmedabad stood at 18% during the fourth quarter.


The government has been pushing affordable housing through various schemes and incentives. Lower home loan interest rates and necessary impetus by the government to affordable housing has played a key role pushing sales in this segment.


The government has supported the housing sector through affordable housing fund, lower Goods & Services Tax (GST) rates, increased tenure of loans under Credit Linked Subsidy Scheme (CLSS) of Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) and extended income tax benefits to apartments of carpet area of 645 sq ft.


Mumbai was followed by Delhi-National Capital Region with 19% increase in sales for the year. In south zone, Chennai and Bangalore have shown a slow down with sales numbers showing a drop of 15% and 5%, respectively while Hyderabad witnessed a growth of 17%.


On year-on-year basis, new launches across these top 8 markets have declined in most cities except in Mumbai, Hyderabad and Kolkata where launches grew 42%, 53% and 29%, respectively.


With a growth in sales and drop in new launches the unsold inventory in the tier 1 cities have dropped by 3% from a year ago to 9.29 lakh units as on March end.


During the fourth quarter ended March, residential sales across these tier I cities increased by 14% with Hyderabad emerging as the leader with a 33% increase followed by Bangalore with 30% rise, MMR with 19% growth and 14% increase in Pune. Kolkata is the only city that witnessed a marginal decline of 1%.


During the fourth quarter, sales in affordable segment with price tag of less than Rs 25 lakh increased 24% from a year ago. Sales in the cost bracket of Rs 25 lakh to Rs 50 lakh increased by 4% on an annual basis. Sales in the cost bracket of Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore increased by 17%, while sales in luxury segment with Rs 1 crore to Rs 2 crore rose 13%. Sales in ultra-luxury segment above Rs 2 crore rose 13%.


Weighted average price across tier I cities witnessed a muted increase of 1%. Marginal decline of 1% was observed in Pune and NCR while prices dropped by 4% in Chennai. Prices in Ahmedabad witnessed no change while a slight increase of 1% was observed in Hyderabad , Kolkata , MMR and Pune each, the data showed.


NCR led with the highest contribution to sales in the affordable segment with 26% followed by MMR with 23%, Ahmedabad with 20% and Pune with 15% of total sales in this segment. All 8 cities cumulatively sold highest in cost range of Rs 25 lakh – Rs 50 lakh, with sales of 35% of total sales, followed by cost range of Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore at 30% of total sales.


Among regions, MMR contributed the highest to overall sales at 17,143 units or 25% of total sales followed by NCR at 15,326 units or 22% of total sales, the data showed.


During the quarter, MMR added the highest new launches, with a contribution of 25% followed by Bangalore 17% and NCR 11%. Among various cost segments, the cost bracket of Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore witnessed maximum new launches amounting to 39% of total new supply followed by the cost brackets of Rs 25 lakhs to Rs 50 lakhs with 36% contribution.


The Rs 50 lakh to Rs 1 crore segment of MMR witnessed maximum launches of 5,545 units contributing 11% of the total new launches across eight tier 1 cities. Kolkata contributed 29% of the new launches in the affordable segment with less than Rs 25 lakh followed by MMR 25% and Pune 24%.



Sunday, 13 May 2018

Kochi corporation to tighten norms for high-rises with basements


Corporation officials will strictly monitor the construction of highrises that utilize maximum floor area ratio (FAR) in saturated areas like MG Road



KOCHI: After an under-construction building caved in recently in Kaloor, corporation is planning to impose strict regulations and monitor the construction works of high-rises that will have two or three basements. 


Corporation officials will strictly monitor the construction of high-rises that utilize maximum floor area ratio (FAR) in saturated areas like MG Road.


"Construction works that use maximum floor area will be monitored right from the time building permit is issued until the work is completed. We have noticed that many buildings are constructing two or three basements. Given the soil condition in Kochi, such constructions will have to be regulated. We are planning to introduce stricter regulations in this context," said mayor Soumini Jain.

The regulations for such buildings will be framed after consulting geotechnical experts and structural engineers. "The condition of soil in Kochi is different. Ata particular site, hard soil can be found by digging up to 2m whereas for the adjacent property you might have to dig up a lot more to get hard soil," said superintending engineer of the corporation KD Ajayaghosh.


"As far as we conducted inspection, it is found that developing more basement floors should require higher setback area (the space left vacant between boundaries of the premises and the structure. We are giving permit for buildings as per Kerala Municipal Building Rules (KMBR). As of now, KMBR doesn't have such regulations. So, corporation will have to take the initiative of putting some regulations in this regard. On Wednesday, the corporation council is expected to conduct a preliminary discussion in this case," he said.


A technical committee - led by two professors from Government Engineering College, Thrissur - will begin site inspection on Tuesday. "They will look at the causes that led to the collapse of the structure and suggest measures to ensure safety. The collector has also deployed a technical committee. A clear picture on the exact reasons which led to the collapse will be available in a week," Ajayaghosh said.


At the same time, corporation authorities are yet to respond to KMRL's demand that the agency also should be consulted before giving permit to highrises along Metro corridor. According to KMRL officials, they had sent a letter to the district collector suggesting that the agency's approval should also be sought in cases of highrises.


District collector K Mohammed Y Safirulla said that local self-government departments are responsible for issuing building permits as well as introducing restrictions on highrises along the Metro stretch. "It is up to Kochi corporation to look into this matter and take adequate steps," he said.





Monday, 7 May 2018

Maharashtra govt reduces lease rent for housing societies and plot owners


Individual plot owners or those whose plot size is less than 5,000 sq ft, as well as housing societies, will now have to pay only 1% of 25% of the plot’s ready reckoner rate (RR rate)



MUMBAI: A section of lease holders of state governmentland can look forward to reduced annual lease rent. The state cabinet on Tuesday decided to cut annual lease rent for individual plot owners, housing societies, social, religious, and cultural organisations and also for orphanages and dharamshalas.


Individual plot owners or those whose plot size is less than 5,000 sq ft, as well as housing societies, will now have to pay only 1% of 25% of the plot’s ready reckoner rate (RR rate). For social, religious and cultural organisations, orphanages and dharamshalas, the annual lease rent has been reduced to only 0.5% of 25% of the plot’s RR rate.


The reduction follows a spate of public interest litigations filed in the Bombay high court after the state government introduced a new lease renewal policy in 2012. It increased the annual lease rent to 2% of 25% of a plot’s RR rates. “This was considered very high, especially since people were paying in hundreds and thousands and under the new policy, it went up to lakhs. It definitely was a huge jump. The court in 2015 directed the government to hold talks with the affected parties and find a middle path,” a senior revenue official said.



Sunday, 29 April 2018

SC stops construction in illegal Delhi colonies


A bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta asked the Centre to set up a Special Task Force for removing encroachments on public land and roads in Delhi



NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday halted all construction in 1,797 unauthorised colonies in the national capital.


A bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta asked the Centre to set up a Special Task Force for removing encroachments on public land and roads in Delhi.


The bench also refused to vacate its stay on proposed amendments to the city's masterplan. The Development Authority had (DDA) appealed the court to vacate the stay.


"On the one hand you have authorised colonies which follow rules and by-laws. On the other hand you have unauthorised colonies which are not following rules and by-laws... Unauthorised colonies can't be placed in a better position than authorised colonies.


"We direct that construction should stop in unauthorised colonies till they follow by-laws," the bench said


The order came after taking into account the submissions of senior advocate Ranjit Kumar, who was assisting the court as amicus curiae, that by-laws do not apply to the illegal colonies and the construction was rampant there.