Hunt for a house that fits your pocket

Prop­er­ties in the range of 50 lakh to 6 crore were show­cased as part of HT’s Ideal Home Tour

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Su­nil Tyagi HT Es­tates Cor­re­spon­dent

Of­ten peo­ple in­vest in sev­eral prop­er­ties at var­i­ous places and some­times it be­comes dif­fi­cult to man­age all of them. Some prop­er­ties lie va­cant lead­ing to a sit­u­a­tion where any per­son/tres­passer can oc­cupy such prop­erty and deny the ti­tle to its law­ful owner. In such a sce­nario it is im­per­a­tive for the law­ful owner to take ac­tion against such illegal oc­cu­pant/tres­passer within a pe­riod of 12 years. Fail­ure to take ac­tion within the afore­said time pe­riod may re­sult in a sit­u­a­tion where the un­law­ful oc­cu­pant ac­quires a bet­ter ti­tle than the law­ful owner due to ad­verse pos­ses­sion. This sit­u­a­tion, when a per­son is in ex­clu­sive, hos­tile pos­ses­sion of a prop­erty owned by another party, with­out hav- plus amount, should you con­sider par­tial pre­pay­ment of your home loan. Don’t hes­i­tate to par­tially pre­pay if you have taken the loan for buy­ing a self-oc­cu­pied prop­erty and the par­tial pre­pay­ment does not bring your share of in­ter­est be­low ₹ 2 lakh. I paid ₹ 14.36 lakh as 50% ad­vance for book­ing a plot in 2013. Ex­cept the pay­ment re­ceipts, there is no re­sponse from the builder. When I called the cor­po­rate of­fice, I was told that the pro­ject had not ma­te­ri­alised. What should I do?

—Yatin­der ing any right or ti­tle over such prop­erty, is called ad­verse pos­ses­sion. Hos­tile pos­ses­sion means a pos­ses­sion of the land/prop­erty by the un­law­ful oc­cu­pant of the ti­tle of the land/prop­erty owner. How­ever, though the con­cept of ad­verse pos­ses­sion seems un­fair for the real owner of the prop­erty, it is recog­nised by law.

The ques­tion that arises for con­sid­er­a­tion then is that what are the cir­cum­stances/ grounds for claim­ing ti­tle over a prop­erty by ad­verse pos­ses­sion? One of them is that the per­son who is the ac­tual owner of the prop­erty must be aware of such hos­tile pos­ses­sion of the other per­son/tres­passer. De­spite hav­ing knowl­edge of such ad­verse pos­ses­sion if the owner fails to a file a suit and/or to take any ac­tion to re­cover pos­ses­sion within 12 years from the date of hos­tile pos­ses­sion, then the rem­edy of tak­ing back pos­ses­sion of his prop­erty will no longer be avail­able to him.

The next ques­tion for con­sid­er­a­tion is: at what point of time does the pe­riod of 12 years for Un­for­tu­nately most buy­ers do not carry out due-dili­gence be­fore in­vest­ing in prop­erty. Your best bet is to ap­proach the con­sumer court. To file a com­plaint, you need to send a well drafted le­gal no­tice to the devel­oper. Await for a re­sponse. If you do not get one, pre­pare a pe­ti­tion stat­ing facts and ev­i­dences with the help of a le­gal ex­pert. claim­ing ad­verse pos­ses­sion com­mence? The 12-year pe­riod com­mences as soon as the pos­ses­sion by the un­law­ful oc­cu­pant be­comes hos­tile to­wards the ac­tual land own­ers’ ti­tle.

Also, the oc­cu­pant/tres­passer must be in pos­ses­sion of the prop­erty/land for a con­tin­u­ous pe­riod of at least 12 years. Such pos­ses­sion must be un­in­ter­rupted and con­tin­u­ous for the en­tire pe­riod of 12 years. It is im­por­tant to note that such pos­ses­sion must not be per­mis­sive as the doc­trine of ad­verse pos­ses­sion will not ap­ply in such a case. For in­stance, it could mean a land owner giv­ing his land/ prop­erty on lease to a ten­ant. The ten­ant then can­not claim ad­verse pos­ses­sion of the land of the land­lord as such pos­ses­sion has been per­mit­ted by the land­lord. Another ex­am­ple of pos­ses­sion that can­not be claimed as ad­verse pos­ses­sion is pos­ses­sion by a ser­vant, care­taker or the watch­man. Such per­sons are only al­lowed to take care of the prop­erty and obliged to re­turn pos­ses­sion when de­manded by the law­ful owner.

It should also be noted that no dec­la­ra­tion of ti­tle can be sought by the per­son/un­law­ful oc­cu­pant claim­ing ti­tle on the ba­sis of ad­verse pos­ses­sion. When the prop­erty owner in­sti­tutes a suit to claim re­cov­ery of his land/prop­erty and dec­la­ra­tion of his ti­tle, the un­law­ful oc­cu­pant can raise a plea of ad­verse pos­ses­sion in or­der to per­fect his ti­tle. How­ever, once the suit is ad­mit­ted, the true owner must es­tab­lish his ti­tle over the land/prop­erty. Once the ti­tle of the true owner is per­fected, the de­fen­dant (the per­son ad­versely pos­sess­ing prop­erty of other) shall have to prove that he has ac­quired bet­ter ti­tle than the owner by means of ad­verse pos­ses­sion. There­fore, the onus to prove the ti­tle by ad­verse pos­ses­sion lies with the un­law­ful oc­cu­pant.

If you were look­ing for a house and re­quired some hand­hold­ing, the Ideal Home Tour event or­gan­ised by Hin­dus­tan Times last week­end was a great op­por­tu­nity.

Held on Septem­ber 26 and 27, 2015 across four lo­ca­tions, the event saw as many as 1,000 peo­ple be­ing es­corted to se­lect lo­ca­tions in chauf­fer- driven cars. These in­cluded Ma­h­a­gun Moderne, Sec­tor 78, Noida, In­dosam, Sec­tor 75, Noida, Amarpali Dream Val­ley, Noida Ex­ten­sion and Ansal Sushant Res­i­dency, Greater Noida.

Amarpali’s Dream Val­ley pro­ject is spread across 64 acres and con­sists of high- and low-rise struc­tures and vil­las in the range of ₹ 4,800 per sq ft to ₹ 5,000 per sq ft. The builder is of­fer­ing easy pay­ment plans for these projects.

Ma­h­a­gun is of­fer­ing residential projects start­ing at ₹ 70 lakh go­ing all the way to ₹ 6 crore un­der the Ma­h­a­gun Moderne ban­ner.

In­dosam in sec­tor 75 and Ansal Sushant Res­i­dency, Greater Noida were other projects in­cluded in the Ideal Home Tour event. The lat­ter also of­fered stu­dio apart­ments in the range of ₹ 20 lakh.

Gau­rang Garg (name changed on re­quest) at­tended the event to look for prop­er­ties in the range of ₹ 50 lakh to ₹ 60 lakh. He hopes to buy a prop­erty out of the money he re­ceives af­ter the sev­enth pay com­mis­sion re­port is sub­mit­ted and gov­ern­ment em­ploy­ees get their dues.

Another home­buyer, Ramit Singh, who has re­cently re­tired from his job, was at the site to look for in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties. “I’ll like to in­vest my hard­earned money in a prop­erty that will fetch me good re­turns,” he said.

IS­TOCK

Prospec­tive home­buy­ers at the Ideal Home Tour or­gan­ised by Hin­dus­tan Times

(Right) San­jay Ku­mar Agar­wal, di­rec­tor, In­dosam Projects, at the event

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