Rajya Sabha passes the Real Estate Regulation Bill

[] A bill seeking to regulate the real estate sector, bring in transparency and help protect consumer interests, was passed by the Rajya Sabha on March 10, 2016

Moving ‘The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill, 2015′ for consideration and passage, Urban Development Minister, M Venkaiah Naidu, said it aims to protect the interests of buyers and bring more transparency in the sector.

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Rajya Sabha passes the Real Estate Regulation Bill 1

It is touted as a major reform measure to regulate the vast real estate sector and bring order in it.

“There will be no discrimination of any kind on the basis of religion, region, caste, creed or sex and gender and we will include that in the rules,” Naidu said, responding to members’ clarification, adding “There has to be single-window clearance for all approvals.”

Read also : Property tax rates in Delhi likely to rise marginally

The Bill also provides for imprisonment of up to three years, in case of promoters and up to one year, in case of real estate agents and buyers, for any violation of orders of Appellate Tribunals or monetary penalties or both.

It proposed that a minimum of 70% collections from buyers, should be deposited in separate escrow account to cover cost of construction and land. Naidu said that this would prohibit unaccounted money from being pumped into the sector, as the money has to be deposited in bank accounts through cheques.

[] The Real Estate Act comes into force from 1st May 2016

It will help establish state-level Real Estate Regulatory Authorities (RERAs) to regulate transactions related to both, residential and commercial projects and ensure their timely completion and handover, the Minister said.

Appellate Tribunals will now be required to adjudicate cases in 60 days, as against the earlier provision of 90 days and Regulatory Authorities will have to dispose of complaints in 60 days, while no time frame was indicated in the earlier bill, he said.

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“It brings in only a regulation and not strangulation. This bill is not against anyone…Real Estate Bill will renew investors’ confidence and ensure timely completion of projects and create more opportunities. In this way, it will help in achieving the target of ‘Housing For All’,” he said.

Naidu added that there could be further changes in the coming times.

Naidu bats for the home buyers

“Such an important sector, over decades has been marked by lack of trust and confidence between the consumers and project developers. In the process, this sector has acquired a certain notoriety, adversely impacting investment climate and hurting the interests of lakhs of home buyers every year.”

“Delay in implementation of housing projects due to lack of transparency and accountability has been the bane of real estate sector in our country. This results in huge cost and time overruns, resulting in increased cost of houses. This is a matter of serious concern in the context of every citizen aspiring to own a house of his or her own.”

“For reasons like lack of regulation in this sector, the consumer has been reduced to a state of helplessness. “The consumer shall be the king as had happened in sectors like telecom after a regulatory mechanism was put in place. There is an imperative need for consumer to be the king in real estate sector also. When there is a king, there got to be a queen also. The queen obviously is the developer. And there shall be a happy marriage between the king and the queen, for both to live happily ever after.”

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Category: Lifestyle

Debora Berti

Università degli Studi di Firenze, IT

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