Here we enlist a few rights and remedies you must be aware of if you are looking to pre-book any property:
· Make sure to check all documentations to ascertain that all regulatory sanctions have been met and the proposed construction is legal. Do not entirely rely on the builder’s words alone; do your own research and background check. If you have taken all foreseeable measures and bought the flat in good faith, then even if the construction is declared illegal at a later stage, you can proceed against the builders for compensation. But your bonafide as a buyer is important here. Refer to the previous Post to go through a list of documents required to be scrutinized while investing in property.
· The builder is not supposed to go back in any promise or obligation is undertaken to you by way of the Agreement between him and you (buyer), and in case of a breach, you can approach a Civil Court of proper jurisdiction for an injunction or damages or refund of the amount.
· As a consumer, you can also approach the Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum under the Consumer Protection Act, in case of a dispute with the builder; but the time period for this is 2 years from the date of the dispute.
· If your builder has not delivered possession to you on the promised date, you can approach the Consumer Forum for deficiency of services by the builder. Before that, you can try issuing a legal notice to the builder, and in case he takes corrective measures to address the matter, then you will be saved from the trouble as well.
· If the buyer is charging exorbitant prices or exploiting you in other manner using his dominant position in the particular market, you can approach the Competition Commission of India in this regard. The Commission shall investigate into the matter and take penal action in case the builder of found guilty of abuse of dominance. However, the Commission cannot order any compensation to the aggrieved person, and only the Appellate authority is empowered under the Act to grant compensation along with the penal action. So if you are looking for monetary reimbursement, CCI is not to be your primary option.
· Not to forget that you can always approach the regulatory authorities like the RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Authority) to complain against the defaulting builder, in cases where false promises are made and statutory compliances are not met.
· If your builder has cheated you or induced you into investing using forged documents or false promises, then you can file a complaint under the IPC invoking the sections on Cheating and breach of trust. The builder, if found guilty by the Court, will be punished under criminal law as well.
· The best of all for an amicable settlement is to go for arbitration proceedings if a clause permitting the same has been included in your builder-buyer agreement. It ensures that the issue is resolved amicably under terms favorable to the parties.