Things to see before taking possession of your property

Owning a house is the ultimate dream of most people since time immemorial as it gives a secured feeling to an individual. But the satisfaction that the buyer gets while taking possession of his dream home is simply unexplainable. However, it is imperative that the buyer remains cautious while doing so.

At times, the buyer may be duped by the builder / seller concerned who may have promised a gamut of amenities, features or likewise at the start of construction. But at the time of handing over the unit to the respective buyer, there are several unfulfilled promises seen by the home buyer. These can vary from being an illegal property to poor construction quality to not providing the promised amenities within the said project. As a result, the buyer feels cheated. Hence, to avoid a situation like this it is better that buyer’s do a detailed check of the property they are going to take for possession.

Verify these important documents

Before taking the keys from the builder or an owner, make sure that you have received the original documents and photocopies of all the essential documents from the builder/owner. The important documents one should be obtaining are as follows:

New property/under construction from the builder

  1. Encumbrance certificate: A mandatory legal document that ensures complete ownership of the property without any financial or legal liabilities. (Ask for the past 30 years)

  2. Commencement Certificate: Issued to the builder by the licensing authority after specifications in the IOD are fulfilled.

  3. No Objection Certificate (NOC): Builders need an NOC from various government departments before beginning construction of the project. These include BESCOM/BWSSB, KPTCL, Environment Clearance

  4. Completion Certificate: A legal document stating whether the building has been constructed according to regulations and norms.

  5. Occupancy Certificate (OC): A mandatory certificate issued by the civic authority signifying compliance of the building to the approved plan and other building laws.

  6. Khata: The document signifies the person’s name under which the property’s records are maintained in the local civic body’s office.

  7. Joint development agreement (if any): Necessary if there are two or more parties jointly involved in the project’s development.

  8. General Power of attorney (GPA): A legal document where one party authorises another party to act on his behalf as his legal representative as well as take binding legal and financial decisions.

  9. Building plan approvals: State whether the building plan has been approved by the local authority or not. If not authorised, it is an illegal construction. (For instance, BBMP or BDA in case of Bangalore)

  10. Allotment letter: In case you are going for a loan, the builder or the cooperative society issues this letter with details of the property being bought/sold, based on which the bank releases the remaining funds.

  11. Tri partite agreement (if any): In case the builder has taken a loan to develop the property

  12. Letter of No Dues: Letter of possession is issued only after all balance payments are received. Till all such clearances are documented internally, the builder will not be signing the possession letter.

  13. Registered deed of conveyance

  14. Land-use Certificate / Conversion Order

  15. Details of electricity, water and power backup

  16. Agreement by maintenance agency

  17. Car parking allotment and details

Note: Documents such as sale agreement, sale deed, mother deed and tax paid receipts by the builder on total saleable area are to be obtained at the time of property registration, in case of under-construction property.

Resale property

In this case, most of the documents are the same as the above with the following few differences

  1. All the above mentioned documents are to be obtained at the time of registration

  2. Up-to-date receipts of property tax paid by the owner

  3. GPA in case of another person authorised by the owner for selling the property and handle all transactions.

  4. Transfer certificate

Things to check within the Project/Unit

Amenities: Builders promise a plethora of amenities such as swimming pool, club house and gym, to name a few, at the time of booking. However, it may happen that some of these may be delayed, or not in a non-desirable condition at the time of possession. If not then, ensure that these amenities are made available as per the agreement later on.

Lifts and common areas: Check if the lifts, if any, are in the working condition especially if your unit is higher up. Besides this, you also need to see if the common areas are well-lit and have the promised flooring and tiling within it.

Features and fittings: While taking possession of your unit, it is important that you check the fittings and features promised to you at the time of booking. These fittings include the electrical switchboard, door knobs, bathroom fittings, etc. You must check whether the builder is providing the same or equivalent brand.

Doors and windows: One must do a due diligence at the time of possession. Ensure that your apartment has all the doors and windows at the designated places as per the plan. Check the quality of the doors and the windows as per the agreement. In case of a net mesh in windows, please check that it has been properly installed. Also ensure that both doors and windows are opening and closing smoothly as well as have proper latching in them.

Wall Paints: Wall paints need to be checked before taking possession of your dream home. All rooms must have double coat paint with no visible patches. Besides checking window and balcony grills paint, exterior painting should also be ideally complete at the time of possession.

Look for cracks: One of the most common issues visible at the time of possession are the cracks in the wall. One must carefully look for the cracks in the foundation, ceilings and walls, which essentially indicate movement of the structure caused by settling, soil expansion etc. Check for cracks on the walls, especially along the electrical sockets.

Drainage outlets: This is also one of the important things you need to check before taking possession of a new flat. Clogged outlets are one of the most common issues one encounters when he moves into a new house. Hence, it is advisable that you check all drainage outlets in balconies, bathrooms, kitchen, utility, etc. are working and not clogged.

Check for leakages: Besides verifying the bathroom fittings as per specifications, it is imperative we check that all taps and bathroom fittings are in working condition. Ensure there are no leakages while opening or closing taps. Ensure that sink in the kitchen is properly installed and that the water is not leaking down below it. Observe if any leakages are seen in your bathroom or kitchen. These leakages can be easily addressed at this stage rather than later on.

Check switches and plug-points: Ensure that all the sockets, plugs and bulb holders are connected to the main supply. Also check if main fuse in the house is controlling complete current supply. If case of an inverter, ensure the supply shift to the inverter if the main switch is switched off. Verify if all switches and plug-points are working. Check if the extra electrical sockets/switches you had asked for are provided as per requirement. Also see if the miniature circuit breaker (MCB) is of good quality.

Obtain all sets of keys: Make sure that all sets of keys are obtained. In case, the property is bought from the builder, the maintenance agency usually has a set of keys. This too should be obtained at the time of possession.

While a buyer may have gone through the necessary documents and may have done a site visit before buying a property, it is important to be doubly sure that everything is in place as expected. This simple checklist will help you have peace of mind before occupying that dream home.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *