Assam RERA Mulls Starting Grading System For Real Estate Projects

GUWAHATI: The Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) has decided to implement a grading system for housing projects across the state. The initiative aims to empower homebuyers in filtering out unprofessional developers while providing them with a better understanding of project suitability and quality. Along similar lines, the Assam Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) is also contemplating starting the grading system in Assam.

A senior official of RERA said, “According to the guidelines prepared during the formation of RERA, starting grading system for real estate projects is one of the most important responsibilities for the body,” adding that the body now is contemplating to start the grading system and for the purpose an “analysis” is ongoing.

The official further opined that before RERA it would have been great if the state government could have formulated a policy which could have started “marking” the real estate projects.

The official said that to start the grading system various aspects of the projects will have to be studied. The study for grading will include a project overview, technical snapshot, financial details, and legal snapshot, said the official adding that the system have to consider the promoters’ compliance track record, legal litigations, project finance quality, amenities, the status of statutory approvals, booking percentage, financial and legal encumbrances, and audit certification, among other criteria. “Such information is typically inaccessible to homebuyers or rarely provided by builders,” said the official.

The official said that RERA receives maximum complaints regarding parking and visitors parking in apartments. “There should be 25% of parking space in any apartment allotted to visitors,” said the official and selling parking space is not legal. He stressed that once the grading system starts, all these issues will be easily taken care of.

The official questioned the process by which authorities like Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) and Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) issue permissions as according to the official many projects across Assam “violate” building bye-law norms.

The introduction of the grading system aims to assist homebuyers in making more informed decisions said the official by considering factors like financial risk, legal risk, technical risk, and timely completion risk, adding that potential investors can better understand the projects they are considering to buy.

The Assam RERA official said that if the grading system starts in Assam, the process vsill be very transparent and public opinion on the grading system will be taken before starting the process.

In Maharashtra, the grading process is scheduled to commence between October 2023 and March 2024. Initially, all projects registered from January 2023 onwards will undergo grading. Subsequently, the Maha RERA authorities plan to establish a matrix for grading promoters. The first round of grading results is expected to be announced on April 20 next year.

The Assam RERA official said that global examples of successful grading systems in Singapore, Australia, and Dubai have resulted in a better real estate environment there and the grading system in Assam also ensure better projects.

The officials are now studying all aspects of the grading system and a decision be made in a couple of months.