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Parliament Panel Recommends Jail Term for Defaulting Builders

New Delhi: A Parliamentary Committee has recommended a slew of measures favouring property buyers, which include a three-year jail term or a fine for a defaulting builder under a new law which will now cover projects of 500 square meters or eight flats.

Under the proposed new law, a jail term of up to three years or a penalty of up to 10 per cent of project cost or both can be imposed on a builder in case of defaulting on commitments made to a buyer.

The Select Committee of Rajya Sabha, which examined the Real Estate Bill 2013 and submitted its report in the House on Thursday, also recommended that 50 per cent of payments made by home-buyers for a real estate project should be kept in a separate account and used for that specific purpose only while the rest can be spent on other projects.

The Bill aims at establishing the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) for regulation and promotion of the sector and setting up of an adjudicating mechanism for speedy dispute redressal. It also aims at establishing the appellate tribunal to hear appeals against the decisions of the RERA.

The committee also recommended that the new law should cover projects of 500 square meters and more or eight flats, instead of 1000 square meters or 12 flats as proposed initially in the bill.

The panel recommended that promoters should get their accounts audited within six months after the close of every financial year by a chartered accountant.

It was also of the view that real estate development beyond town planning area may be brought under the ambit of the Bill.

The committee, however, did not agree that a person holding more than two apartments or plots in the same project should be treated as a promoter.

It said that a promoter, while applying for registration of any project with the authority, should enclose details of its existing projects, details of approvals, land title and payment dues.

The panel also redefined the carpet area, saying it means the net usable floor area of an apartment, excluding the area covered by the external walls and that under service shafts, exclusive balcony or verandah and open terrace areas, although it would include the area covered by the internal partition walls of the apartment.

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Realty Trends

Home prices near most-affordable levels in over 30 years: HDFC


Home prices may have been on an upward spiral for many years, but the cost of owning a house in India remains near the most affordable level in over three decades, shows data compiled by mortgage giant HDFC Ltd.

The average price of a home, purchased with a housing loan, rose to over Rs. 45 lakh in the 2012-13 fiscal year -- marking the fourth consecutive year of uptrend from about Rs. 25 lakh in the year 2008-09, HDFC has said in a presentation.

However, factors like an even greater surge in the personal income levels, tax incentives and lower interest rates, have resulted into houses becoming more affordable to purchase, it said.

 

 

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India Property Investment Gyan

Major schemes for affordable housing to be modified: Girija Vyas


NEW DELHI: Major schemes meant for providing affordable housing to urban poor will soon be modified to make them more people-friendly, the government said today and invited the private sector to contribute more actively in this area. 

Speaking to reporters here, Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (HUPA) ministerGirija Vyas today said her ministry is modifying all the major schemes including the Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY), Rajiv Rinn Yojana and the, Affordable Housing in Partnership scheme and added enormous budgetary support has been earmarked during the current plan period. 

Secretary HUPA Arun Kumar Misra told reporters that a fund of Rs 35,000 crore had been allocated to the ministry for the implementation of three major schemes, including RAY, which was being run in as a pilot project earlier under 12th five- year plan. 

He said the ministry would require approval from the cabinet for the implementation of these schemes and efforts would be made that through these funds 2 million affordable houses are encouraged. 

He said that in addition to the central government funds, banks and credit institutions would be providing funds for construction of affordable houses. 

Vyas said that with urbanisation, the number of urban homeless and area under slums had grown. 

Vyas said there was a need for private developers to develop economic models to foster affordable housing for economically weaker sections and lower income group households in urban areas as government efforts in this direction needed to be supplemented. 

Vyas also said a technical group, set up by her ministry, had shown that out of 18.78 million housing shortage in the country, 96 percent shortage is in EWS and LIG category and for this huge investments and private sector participation were required. 

Misra said the group set up by the ministry has suggested incentives for the affordable housing sector included concessions to development-related charges and service taxexemptions. 

It also sought direct tax rebates for affordable housing projects and inclusion of the sector in the 'infrastructure facility' he said and added the task force had felt that governments need to still provide direct capital grant support to affordable housing projects. 

Misra said that in the symposium held today where states, experts and private sector representatives were present, there was unanimity on many of the suggestions.

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Green Property- Eco Homes

Reclaim your city space: Projects in Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata aim to transform lives

 
Three projects in three cities aim to transform the lives of people who live close by. The one in Mumbai hopes to transform a congested area into a green precinct; the one in Delhi converted an open drain into a walkway, while Kolkata hopes to bring the crowds back...