Property buyers shouldn't fall into the trap and be wary of builders'offers during festive season

Exercise caution while buying a property during this festive season

One of the first things a buyer should do is a thorough background check of the builder in terms of time taken to complete a project 

Shveta Jain, ED, Residential Services, Cushman & Wakefield

The festival season in India is considered to be auspicious for making new purchases and investments. As a result, many people tend to enter into real estate transactions, which are typically big ticket in nature.

A few developers plan their project launches to coincide with the festival season. Some developers try to lure the consumer by offering discounts, low or zero down-payment options, and subvention schemes. Freebies like gold coins or holidays at foreign locations are some other attractions offered during the period.

Lenders, too, offer special home loan schemes during this period. No wonder, then, that the season usually witnesses the highest number of sales, almost 20-25 per cent more than the rest of the year. That said, buyers need to exercise caution and do their research before purchasing a property during the festive season.

They should not fall for schemes such as no EMI for two years, 20:80 scheme or construction-linked payment plan. Also, buyers need to be wary of taking discounts at face value and instead look for the hidden charges. They must always check if the discount is only on the carpet area or super built-up area. Reading between the lines would help buyers fi nd out if there are certain hidden terms and conditions behind the freebies offered.

One of the first things a buyer should do is a thorough background check of the builder in terms of the number of projects completed, time taken to complete a project and the quality of construction. The buyer should look for a list of approvals that the builder needs to obtain. This includes building plans and approvals from various regulatory authorities.

The structural safety certificate, no-objection certificates by civic authorities, environment clearances, bank approvals, urban land ceiling certificate, commencement certificate, and title deed are some other approvals that builders need to obtain. Non-compliance of these will not only result in delay of project completion, but also altogether scrapping of the project.

Additionally, it is important to ascertain whether the builder is financially robust, and would be able to complete the given project on time without any financial distress. Buyers can look forward to a lot of offers from developers during the festival period, and even the fence sitters may be prompted making a purchasing decision.

Developers also offer freebies such as white goods, low mortgage rates for a fixed period and subvention schemes to garner maximum bookings during the auspicious period. However, home buying is not an instinctive urge. It requires a great deal of thoughtful consideration.

Hence, when buyers are being presented tantalizing offers, it is essential to evaluate whether it would really fulfill their needs better. Offers from real estate developers are usually steps to increase the sales volume and clear unsold inventories. Potential buyers should not forget to assess the quality of these offers and should ensure they do their own research thoroughly. They should plan their finances and study the terms and conditions of the offers and always buy a home from the viewpoint of the convenience that it would ultimately bring to them.

Shveta Jain, ED, Residential Services, Cushman & Wakefield