Relief for 6-year delay in possession of Kurla’s apartment

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Chairman of the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA), Ajoy Mehta, in a recently passed ordinance related to the Kohinoor City residential project, has brought relief to an aggrieved homebuyer. The regulatory authority ordered the builder to pay interest on the amount received and to enter into a sales agreement with the buyer which it had so far avoided.

The case concerns a house buyer named Arif Merchant, company Feraz Trading Pvt Ltd approached MahaRERA against Kohinoor developers for delaying possession of their booked apartment.

The buyer had booked an apartment for a hefty amount of Rs 1.56 crore. Of which he has already paid Rs 73.66 lakh. It was agreed that the possession would be handed over in 2016. Later, the developer after the formation of MahaRERA registered the project and extended the time until 2019 and then until 2021.

Since the said promoter delayed the project, the buyer approached MahaRERA to seek redress.

The real estate regulator, after reviewing the submissions of both parties, ordered the developer to pay interest on the amount received and also sign a sales agreement.

The plaintiff was represented by attorney Sharon Fernandez of The Law Suits.

The buyer argued that despite accepting 45% of the consideration amount, no sale agreement was signed, further violating the RERA law. In addition, they are eligible for interest on the amount paid under the RERA law. Further arguing that the reasons given by the developer for the delay are not acceptable.

The developer had cited the pandemic which the buyer objected to as possession had been agreed in 2016 long before the pandemic. In addition, the developer had stated that the delay was due, among other things, to the fact that the Hard Rock and Hume pipe had been encountered during the laying of the foundations or the excavation, however, these and other reasons do not are only an afterthought, as the developer was silent on this aspect and did not inform the complainants of the same, especially since the reasons attributed to the delay are an integral part of the construction company and that the developer with a reputation and years of experience was well aware of this and shouldn’t have taken 7-8 years (from time of booking) to complete the construction of a 10-storey building, replied l ‘Buyer.

Lawyer Suleman Bhimani of The Law Suit said MahaRERA offered interest and ordered him to sign the deed of sale. But the promoter had asked to pay the stamp duties which were 2% last year. Since the project was delayed, the buyer has to pay 5% stamp duty, resulting in an additional 3% loss, he said.

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Posted: Friday, April 8, 2022, 11:18 p.m. IST

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