Real estate in the state is not a big business after demonetisation and introduction of GST. This we can find in registration office, where we used to find people waiting to get their work done by standing in que and spending more time waiting. Nowadays, there is hardly any rush in the registration offices and that really shows the real slackness in business. Housing loan frauds were taking place when the business was going on briskly and even fake documents were prepared to sell a single flat to multiple people. Bankers were running the real risk and some of the bank officers were charge sheeted or arrested by CBI for serious irregularities. But generally banks punish the erring officer with increment cuts to show and claim insurance on these housing loan transactions.
Now real estate business is dull and the rot continues. Poor quality of construction saw many buildings collapse at the time of construction. These buildings have been constructed in complete violation of norms. Illegal structures are coming up and resulting in high risk for buyers. In this regard, prospective buyers are going for second hand purchase and thereby they can reduce cost factor and get flats with spacious rooms rather than having 10X10′ bedrooms and cramped hall and kitchen. Even people are ready to negotiate with sellers, who have bank liabilities and were desperate to sell their flat for the purpose of making up the loan and avoid loading of further interest. If all the precautions are strictly adhered to, then it is a win-win situation for both the buyer and the seller and the housing loan can be closed once for all. Banks also feel the pressure of NPA and facilitate easy sale of the flat by providing necessary information and even arrange a loan for the new buyer also by mortgaging the existing property in the name of the new buyer. Thus the high level risk is well and truly curtailed when the real estate is not doing well. Illegal structures are the real threat and it is not wise to for free buying without looking into the document through proper vetting done through an approved lawyer. Even if there is a corporation seal the needy people go for it rent and pay the price of losing their life in poor construction cases.
What is amazing is that tenants, knowing fully well that the structures are illegal, rented it with risk. What is more surprising is that the electricity department provided power connection meters to these building helping out the cause of stay. If you look at it, you realise that there were violations by everyone concerned and such a deadly cocktail had to end in some catastrophe such as a building collapse of an illegal structure. Did those who rent space in the buildings imagine that disasters happened only to other people? They are as culpable in this crime as the owner and the officials.
We cannot sit idle saying the law will take its own course in such cases of illegal construction and renting thereafter. But what hurts is that all this makes us, the law abiders, appear like fools. Are regulations and legislations are only for us. Even after buying your own flat there are other inherent risks including seepage from the top floor. And during rainy season such leakages come to light and cause great concern and a permanent problem to the flat owners facing continuous flow of water coming down. This is happening in newly constructed buildings as well. Buying a flat is very difficult with such a huge escalation of prices in recent times and adding to that numerous problems faced by the flat owners makes the life difficult and a rot in real estate business as well.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)