Com­mon re­grets of new home own­ers

Hid­den costs, poor qual­ity con­struc­tion and legal is­sues are some com­mon grouses that are faced by most home­buy­ers

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - HT Es­tates Cor­re­spon­dent

How sat­is­fied are you with the prop­erty you’ve bought? There are both sat­is­fied and un­sat­is­fied home own­ers at large. Some­times, a pur­chase is made with­out proper plan­ning and thought – the re­sult is re­gret.

If we poll any given group of un­happy prop­erty buy­ers, a re­mark­ably con­sis­tent list of com­plaints emerges. Af­ter elim­i­nat­ing rep­e­ti­tions, it ap­pears that buy­ers of­ten wish they had known th­ese pit­falls be­fore­hand:

Th­ese are some com­mon grouses.

The flat was too costly: Of­ten, a res­i­dence’s cost-price makes more sense be­fore the pur­chase than af­ter. The prob­lem with im­pulse buy­ing is that we only see what we want to see. It is easy to over­look some ob­vi­ous facts while giv­ing in to im­pulse temp­ta­tion – the flat may not be large enough, may not have proper ven­ti­la­tion, may be in an un­suit­able neigh­bour­hood, etc.

Th­ese faults can some­times come to light only when we have time to think about it, and when it is too late.You may also dis­cover that, even though your flat is ad­e­quate, it is over­priced in com­par­i­son to other flats avail­able in the neigh­bour­hood. In ret­ro­spect, it is not un­com­mon to de­cide that one has paid too much for the prop­erty.

The con­struc­tion is of poor qual­ity: This is a fact that can only be dis­cov­ered in slow suc- ces­sion. On closer in­spec­tion, one may find that the floor is warped, that the rooms have un­even sur­faces and asym­met­ric an­gles, that the walls do not re­tain nails and screws with­out crum­bling, that the flat makes strange noises at night, that the roof leaks and that the sep­tic sys­tem is makeshift.

The builder has a bad rep­u­ta­tion: If this is true in your case, you have much to worry about. The com­mon mis­take of not check­ing a builder’s stand­ing on the real es­tate mar­ket can re­sult in fu­ture lit­i­ga­tion, poor or to­tally ab­sent main­te­nance and breach of pur­chase con­tract.

There are hid­den costs: Sure, the swim­ming pool and club­house were de­cid­ing fac­tors in buy­ing the flat – but ap­par­ently no­body told you that you will have to con­trib­ute to their main­te­nance. Or that this prop­erty’s so­ci­ety charges out­ra­geous membership fees.

The flat is not ‘vaastu’ com­pli­ant: If you are a be­liever in In­dia’s ver­sion of feng shui – vaastu shaas­tra – then find­ing out that your new flat breaks all the rules of an aus­pi­cious home will def­i­nitely up­set you.

The project is in le gal trou­ble: This can mean a lot of things – you may end up with­out the promised park­ing space, the ad­ver­tised lift may never be in­stalled, you may have to pay taxes or lit­i­ga­tion charges ac­cu­mu­lated by the pre­vi­ous owner, or may be forced to va­cate the prop­erty be­cause the whole project is even­tu­ally de­clared il­le­gal.

The area is short of wa­ter: It did not seem like you would have a prob­lem with wa­ter – af­ter all, the project fea­tures a borewell.

What many of us do not an­tic­i­pate is the nat­u­ral reser­voir it feeds from can run dry. If you haven’t es­tab­lished the avail­abil­ity of mu­nic­i­pal wa­ter sup­ply, you will def­i­nitely be in trou­ble – es­pe­cially when you try to re­sell the prop­erty.

You have t ur ned i nto Robin­son Cru­soe (no public trans­porta­tion): Do you re­mem- ber the fa­mous story of the man who was stranded on an is­land? That’s what it feels like when you find out that your beau­ti­ful new home is cut off from the rest of the world.

It is not enough to own a pri­vate ve­hi­cle - th­ese can break down, and may not cover your en­tire fam­ily’s trans­porta­tion needs.

The lift is a death- trap: The most un­for­tu­nate time to dis­cover that the project’s lift does not have gen­er­a­tor backup is dur­ing a power cut – while you are in it.

You are sit­u­ated on the banks of a garbage canal: Don’t ex­pect to smell an open ‘nalla’ at the time of in­spec­tion or pur­chase of the flat – the aroma will only be ev­i­dent at cer­tain hours of the day.

Your new home has an on­go­ing fire haz­ard: Too late, you no­tice that there are no fire ex­tin­guish­ers to be seen any­where on the prop­erty. It is best when all of th­ese things are dis­cov­ered be­fore buy­ing the unit.

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