Q1: What is a residential apartment?
A: A residential apartment is an autonomous housing unit that consists of bed rooms, living rooms, kitchen, bath rooms, etc. It occupies only a part of a building. Apartments may be owned by an owner or by rented tenants. In commonwealth countries, the term 'flat' is used to describe apartments.
Q. What are the various types of apartments?
A: Apartments can be broadly divided on the basis of size as follows:

Studio apartments / efficiency/ bed sit / bachelor or bachelorette style apartments - are the smallest size apartments, designed especially for rent purpose. Such an apartment generally consists of a large room which is the combined dining, living and bed room. Even the kitchen facility is combined in these apartments barring the bathrooms. Bachelor or efficiency style apartments are at times smaller than studio apartments.


One bed room apartments are those in which one bed room is separated from the rest of the apartment. Similarly there are two bed room sets, three bed room sets etc. Small apartments have only one entrance unlike large apartments which may have more than a single entrance.


A garden apartment has some characteristics of a town house with each apartment having its own entrance and separate apartments are not placed vertically over one another. However, a garden apartment is usually one storey and never more than two stories. Some garden apartment buildings place a one-car garage under each apartment with pedestrian entrance from a common courtyard. The grounds are landscaped compared to other modestly scaled apartment.




What should a buyer keep in mind while purchasing a residential apartment?


Some important points to keep in mind while buying a residential apartment are:


Locality – Proximity to workplace, educational institutions, hospitals, shopping areas, entertainment center, transportation, pollution levels.


Quoted area of the flat i.e. Carpet, Built Up Area and Super Built Up Area


Car parking space


Quality of construction


Reputation of the builder or seller


Sufficient water and electric supply and other utilities


Cost components like price, stamp duty, registration charges, transfer fees, maintenance charges and other payments


Appreciation of the property for resale and rental


Other distinguishing features or advantages of the property




What do you mean by Carpet Area, Built-Up Area and Super Built-Up Area?


Carpet Area is the area enclosed within the walls, actual area to lay the carpet.


Carpet Area is the total usable area enclosed within the four walls of an apartment or commercial space. It refers to the actual area over which a carpet can be laid if required by the owners. It does not include the thickness of the inner walls.


Built-Up Area is the carpet area plus the thickness of outer walls and the balcony.


Super Built - Up Area is the built up area in addition to the proportionate area of common areas such as the lobby, lifts shaft, stairs, etc. The plinth area along with a share of all common areas proportionately divided amongst all unit owners make up the Super Built-Up area. At times it may also include the common areas such, swimming pool, garden, clubhouse, etc. The term is therefore only applicable in the case of multi-dwelling units.




How can knowing the Carpet Area, Built-Up Area and Super Built-Up Area of a flat help in the purchase of an apartment?


The break up of areas is extremely essential as builders can place any space from 65% to 85% per cent of the super built area as carpet area. It would then imply that if the area is quoted as 1,000 sq ft super built up area, the carpet area could be anywhere from just 650 sq ft to 850 sq ft. If this break up is not mentioned in the agreement, demand that the vendor/ builder mention it in the sale deed.




Should I inspect a property before buying it?


It is definitely important to inspect the property before purchase as probably it is one of the largest single investment made by most buyers. It is crucial to know all the details of the property and need for any major repairs / modifications before it is purchased. It is easy to crosscheck the commitment made by builder and actual implementation if a pre-purchase inspection has been carried out. A close inspection points out the positive and negative aspects of the property, as well as the maintenance that will be necessary to keep it in good shape.


Few important points to check while inspecting are:


Plumbing systems, drainage, water faucets and sanitary fittings.


Electrical systems, circuit breakers, wires, capacity of the electric meter and functioning of light fittings.


Roof, walls, ceilings, floors, paint work.


Foundation, basement and visible structures.


Doors and windows, latches, locks.


Structural stability of the building.




What points should be included in the checklist for buying residential or commercial property?


The checklist should include the following points:


Property identification


Crosschecking current market rates of properties in the vicinity and last known transactions and current market trends


Formulation of commercial terms


Distinguishing between negotiable and fixed terms and conditions of the contract, like price, payment schedule, time of completion etc


Availing services of Propmart for legal opinion, valuation or property related matters


Verifying clear titles of the property and acquiring photocopies of the all deeds of title related to the property to be purchased. Examination of the deeds to establish the ownership of the property by seller, preferably through an advocate


Ascertaining the survey number, village and registration district of the property as these details are required for registration of the sale. Previous encumbrances and loans, if any on the property must be cleared before completion of purchase of the property


Finalizing commercial terms of purchase of the property. Ascertain transfer fees, stamp duty and registration charges to be paid on purchase of the property


Ascertain outgoings to be paid for the property i.e. property tax, water and electricity charges, society charges, maintenance charges


Request vendor to obtain, if applicable, a consent, permission, sanction and a No Objection Certificate (NOC) of various authorities like society, income tax authority, Municipal Corporation, the competent authority under the Urban Land Ceiling and Regulation Act and any other authority


If a loan is required for property purchase, financial institutions must be contacted for a pre approval letter. As many options are available for loans, Propmart can also assist in loan requirement procedures and options


Permanent Account Number (PAN) of vendor and purchaser under Income Tax laws must be ascertained


Payment of stamp duty on the formal agreement or document for transfer of the property, signing by both the Vendor and Purchaser and registration


After payment of the entire sale price, the buyer can take over legal possession of the property and s/he must check the receipt of original documents from the Vendor of the property


Ensure that property holder's name is changed in all related records like society, electric company, Municipal Corporation, index II etc.




What is a Sale Deed?


Sale Deed also known as Conveyance Deed is a document by which the seller transfers his right to the purchaser, who, in turn, acquires an absolute ownership of the property. The document is executed subsequent to the execution of the sale agreement and after compliance of various terms and conditions detailed in the sale agreement.




What is a Draft Sale Deed?


A Draft Sale Deed contains full details of the parties, advance amount paid, mode of balance amount payable, receipt of the balance amount by the seller, handing over the original documents of the property, handing over the possession of the property, handing over the authorization letter to transfer power and water meters, signing of the application for transfer of ‘khata’, title of the seller of the property, indemnifying the purchaser in case of defect in the title and easement rights and is prepared by the purchaser's advocate.




What is Khata?


A Khata is an account of assessment of a property, recording details about the property such as size, location, built up area and so on, for the purpose of payment of property tax. It is also a kind of identification of the person who is primarily liable for payment of property tax. It is one of the required documents in case the buyer requires a building license, trade license or loan from banks or any other financial institutions.




What is the difference between a Khata and Title Deed?


A Khata is an account of assessment of a property for the payment of tax. The Khata does not confer ownership. However, the Title Deed is the document through which a person derives a title or ownership of the said property.




What is a leasehold property?


A leasehold property is that which is leased to a lessee for a stipulated period. The lessee pays lease premium and annual lease amount as fixed and mutually agreed upon by the lessor and lessee. The land ownership rights remain with the lessor and a prior sale-permission is normally required if you plan to transfer the property.




What are legal aspects related to buying a property?


Before buying an apartment it is crucial to carefully examine all types of legal documents related to the building and the land. A buyer can ask for the certificates and documents cleared by the respective agencies or boards with regard to the property. Some points to be verified are as follows:


Check whether the property has clear legal titles or not


Check whether the developer has the right to transfer the properties and whether he has taken transfer of property approvals from the statutory land development or planning authority or competent authority constituted under the Urban Land Ceiling and Regulation Act and the Income-Tax Act


Check if the developer has acquired approvals from the Municipal Corporation, Area Development Authorities, electricity boards, water supply and sewage boards


Scrutinize the contract and take help from legal experts before signing




How well do you need to know the developer?


Most of the apartments are by property developers in India and it is essential to check the background of the developer, the builder, the designer and the architect. It must be investigated if there have been any problems with their other developments in past. The financial position of the developer should be strong so that he could complete the project on time if the project is under construction. Investors must find out if the developer has the essential resource and building consents before paying anything.




Do personal preferences help when buying a property?


Yes. In fact, personal preferences form an eminent part of the entire process. Some preferences which help in judging the property include queries like:


Does it have a view and sunlight or is it blocked by other buildings or is it facing the wrong way from the sun?


Checking whether there any pending resource consents that will probably affect the apartment block in future, for example, plans to build a high-rise hotel next door?


Is there a balcony so that the owner can enjoy the view or afternoon sunshine?


Are there any other facilities in the complex, like a gym and swimming pool?


Probable enquires about your neighbours to find out if noise could be a problem.


Are the near-by apartments rented? If so, do the renters constantly change as these types of neighbours could pose a problem later.

Q1: Who is a Non-Resident Indian (NRI)?

An Indian citizen who stays abroad for employment or business or a vocation outside India or stays abroad under circumstances indicating an intention for an uncertain duration of stay abroad is a non-resident. Non-resident foreign citizens of Indian Origin are treated at par with Non-resident Indian citizen (NRIs).

Q2. Who is a person of Indian Origin (PIO)?

A person of Indian Origin (PIO) is a citizen of any other country but whose ancestors were Indian nationals at least four generations away.

Q3. What is an OCB?

Overseas Corporate Bodies (OCBs) are bodies predominantly owned by individuals of Indian nationality or origin resident outside India and include overseas companies, partnership firms, societies and other corporate bodies which are owned, directly or indirectly, to the extent of at least 60% by individuals of Indian nationality or origin resident outside India. In overseas trusts at least 60% of the beneficial interest is irrevocably held by such persons. Such ownership interest should be actually held by them and not in the capacity as nominees. The various facilities granted to NRIs are also available with certain exceptions to OCBs as long as the ownership/beneficial interest held in them by NRIs continues to be at least 60%

Q4. Can NRIs and Overseas Corporate Bodies (OCBs) invest in India?

Investments by NRIs and OCBs are allowed, both, through the RBI route and also through the Government route, i.e., through the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB). NRIs and OCBs are permitted to invest up to 100% equity in real estate development activity and civil aviation sectors. Investment, made by the NRIs and OCBs, are fully repatriable, except in the case of real estate, which has a 3 year lock-in period on original investment and, 16% cap on dividend repatriation. For those proposals that do not qualify under the automatic route, Government approval is granted through FIPB.

Q5. How should purchase considerations for the residential immovable property be paid by foreign citizens of Indian origin under the general permission?
A: The purchase consideration should be met either out of inward remittances in foreign exchange through normal banking channels or out of funds from NRE/FCNR accounts maintained with banks in India.
Q6. Is there a limit to the number of investment in acquiring commercial properties in India?

Most of the apartments are developed by developers so it will be handy to check the background of the developer, the builder, the designer, and the architect. You should always check if there have been any problems with their other developments in past. The financial position of the developer should be strong so that he could complete the project on time if the project is under construction, find out that the developer has the essential resource and building consents before paying anything. As far as quantity of NRI investment is concerned in real estate investment in India there is no limit on the number of investments can be made in commercial properties in India.

Q7. Can a person of Indian origin acquire any immovable property in India by way of inheritance?

A person of Indian origin, resident outside India, may acquire any immovable property in India by way of inheritance from a person, resident outside India, who had acquired such property in accordance with the provisions of foreign exchange law in force at the time of acquisition by him or the provisions of Foreign Exchange Management (Acquisition and Transfer of Immovable Property in India) Regulations, 2000. Immovable property, by way of inheritance, can also be acquired by a person of Indian origin resident outside from a person resident in India.

Q8. Are NRIs permitted to send remittances outside India out of the assets in India that are inherited by them?

Yes. RBI will consider application from NRIs for remittance of assets, inherited by them in India. Such remittance may be permitted up to US$ 100,000 per year.

Q9. What is the approved method of sending remittances into India?
A: The approved method of sending remittances into India is through normal banking channels.
Q10. At what rates are remittances in foreign currencies made by NRIs convertedby banks into rupees?
A: Such remittances will be converted by banks at the market rate of exchange.
Q11. What is Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA)?

Residential status and nature of transaction i.e. capital account transaction (e.g. purchase/ sale of shares, property) or current account transaction (e.g. remittance of income on shares, property) are the cornerstones of FEMA. Under FEMA, certain types of transactions do not require RBI permission while others either require prior approval of RBI/ Government or it is mandatory to inform RBI of the same.

Q12. Can a person of Indian origin resident outside India gift properties acquired earlier in terms of the provisions of FERA/FEMA?

Yes. A person of Indian origin resident outside India may transfer residential or commercial property in India by way of gift to a person resident in India or to a person resident outside India who is a citizen of India or to a person of Indian origin resident outside India. A Person of Indian origin resident outside India may also transfer by way of gift agriculture land/farm house/plantation property in India to a person resident in India

Q1: What is Vaastu Shastra?

The term 'vaastu' is derived from Sanskrit 'vasu', meaning 'earth' and the word 'shastra' meaning 'science'. It is ancient Hindu science of construction and formed a crucial guiding system for the construction of any structure. Its practice started from the Vedic period and was widely used to build a property which would be auspicious and bring prosperity, happiness and health to the residents.

Q2: How did Vaastu Shastra help town planning in ancient times?

In ancient times Vaastu shastra was used in town planning and the construction of temples for its detailed methodology of designing and structuring buildings, buying land etc. for maximizing benefits for the buyer. A revival of interest and extensive use of this 5000 year old method has been noticed since the mid 90’s to provide maximum advantage to homeowners and proprietors of commercial constructions.

Q3: What is the role of air, water, fire, earth and space in vaastu shastra?

According to vaastu shastra our world comprises of five basic elements. Earth has life because of the presence of these five elements. Harmony of these five elements in our body and environment keeps us healthy and active while any disturbance in the equilibrium devitalizes us. Vaastu shastra provides the ancient knowledge which instructs how to maintain the equilibrium of these five elements in a building and make best use of them to energize mental and physical energies of inhabitants.


As per Vaastu Shastra what are the parameters that should be kept in mind while purchasing or renting commercial and residential real estate?

A: Some of the parameters which can form a guideline in selecting the correct property are as follows:
  If one is purchasing a constructed house or building, it is best if the main structure is in the centre of the plot.

If it is a rectangular plot the structure should be closer to South, South West and West directions, while North and East directions should have open spaces.

  In case of buying a non-rectangular plot it should be ensured that South East and South West corners have a 90 degrees angle.
  'L' shaped plots are considered unsuitable as it signifies missing opportunities for the owners
  Yellow colored soil is good for commercial lands as it is an auspicious color, signifying increase in wealth
  A plot surrounded by roads in all four sides is considered quite auspicious
  Buying a plot that has the South and West part higher than the North or East part brings in good luck
  While buying a constructed commercial or residential property, it is ideal to have a narrow main gate and a wider end
  Rocky land should be avoided as it is considered inauspicious
  One should ideally avoid plots which have obstructions in front of the entrance eg: wells, big trees, pillars and posts
Q5: What role does direction play while buying commercial or residential estate?

While purchasing a property if directions and vaastu are kept in mind it surely brings in good luck. The different directions are believed to be governed by various deities in Hindu Mythology and in turn such deities govern various aspects of our life. It therefore pays to ensure that the property and constructed areas are in perfect harmony and accordance with their natural element and deity. Some directions and their ruling deities are as follows:

Direction Deity Purpose
North-East Ishwar Grants wisdom, knowledge and comfort
East Indra Grants wealth and pleasures of life
South -East Agni Grants pleasant personality
South Yamraj Eradicates evil
South-West Nissan Eradicates fear of enemies
West Varun Grants prosperity
North-West Vayu Grants health and longevity
North Kuber Grants wealth and comfort

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Contact Information

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