Top 10 Tips For Buying a Flat in 2021 For Novice Home Buyers
By Pratik Balasaria
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One of the milestones in every person’s life is sealing a property deal. You have spent several grueling years to plan and invest in the best possible purchase that fits your idea of an ideal home. With the hefty amount of loan and monthly installments at stake, it becomes all the more necessary to follow a checklist of must-know tips for buying a flat before you take the leap of selection.  

Ten Tips for Buying A flat

tips for buying a flat

 While there are some key parameters that need your attention—such as price, location, possession date, security and privacy measures, builder’s reputation, and local infrastructure, there are some other parameters that also need your attention before you zero in on a new flat; let’s have a look:

  1. Buying the property from a reputed builder will save you a lot of heartache 

There is no dearth of real estate companies in India, and with a number of property deliveries coming out at the same time, the choice of selecting the right real estate developer becomes difficult. However, there are a number of benefits when you select a property from reputed real estate developers. To start with, you do not have to worry about the quality of construction and you can be assured of timely delivery of your home. Furthermore, reputed real estate developers usually have a good track record of experience and a consistent success rate. By checking their ground report, you will also realize that most of their projects are registered under Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). In addition, most of the established builders are members of an industry association, such as the Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India (CREDAI), or the Builder’s Association of India (BAI). Not to forget, the additional perks of modern amenities that come with buying projects from established real estate companies. 

PS Group—one of the premier real estate companies in Kolkata offers an array of modern amenities for the health and well-being of its strong consumer base. These include state-of-the-art amenities from sustainable, green features to e-mobility, meditation gardens, extra-large balconies, and other seamless and luxurious amenities. 

  1. Legal Check of your property is also a quality certificate 

Before you seal the final deal, make sure your flat is legally authorized and has legal permissions to stand on the plot. As a homebuyer, there is nothing wrong in checking whether the developer has approvals and NOCs from the Municipal Corporation, in addition to other area development authorities for water supply, sewage boards, electricity boards, etc. 

However, if you have taken a home loan, your property documents are already validated during your loan sanction. A certified builder will be professional in his approach and will have the quality checks and legalization under control— this will serve as a valued quality certificate. 

  1. Location is the essence of valuable real estate 

Kolkata is one of the fastest-growing cities in India and the number of full-time working professionals in the city is rising. Selecting a property close to commercial and entertainment centres, IT Parks, schools, colleges, grocery shops, hospitals, malls, parks, theaters, etc. plays a vital role in buying a flat. Furthermore, the property’s location not only impacts the market value of the property but also your standard of living. Flats in high-end residential areas ensure good connectivity and security in terms of market volatility. In addition, the local infrastructure around the property plays a vital role in deciding its future and current market value. Higher ROI therefore largely depends on the location of property. 

Among valuable tips for buying a flat, you should remember, your property should have good connectivity to major parts of the city as well as to public and private transportation. Consider future connectivity plans like a proposed metro line or an expressway around the locality before the final purchase. In addition, the roads connecting to the flat and the in-roads within the residential society should be well-built and well-maintained.  

  1. Know the difference between carpet area and built-up area 

The super built-up area which is usually mentioned in the brochures, includes the staircase, the thickness of the walls, elevator space, lobby area, etc. The actual carpet area of the flat therefore is almost 30% less than the super built-up area. Make sure to check area details before you book so that you are not caught by surprise. 

  1. Doing an affordability check is part of the process

The first step you have to deal with while buying a flat is to check your affordability and budget. You might want to check, ‘how much you can afford,’ along with the existing price of flats in Kolkata. Remember, with every square foot, the monthly budget increases along with property taxes. Make sure to decide your price range on the basis of your income. 

Shortlisting the type of houses based on your budget, comparing prices of properties from various builders are some of the main steps to start with. You can draw a comparison by studying property listings from portals and newspapers, or through brokers. Also, remember to note the volatile changes in asking prices, this also gives you an idea of the housing trends in specific areas you are interested in.

In the process, remember to be open to options and also consider properties from prime locations as the price of the property will mirror your standard of living to a great extent, choose a perfect mix of cost and quality.  

  1. You cannot ignore mobile network connectivity  

With work from home becoming the norm of today’s work culture, a reliable and clear cellular network service is a must-have to maintain an effective flow of business. Therefore, among important tips for buying a flat, make sure there is uninterrupted network coverage in the flat. Furthermore, with no dearth of high-rises in most of the Indian cities today—metros and smaller cities alike, tall buildings around your house may weaken mobile signals. You should therefore only buy when the network aligns with your signal type.  

Furthermore, many service providers do not provide a broadband facility on higher floors, while some of the real estate developers are also offering cell signal boosters for highrise buildings to increase productivity and uninterrupted communications for their residents. Be informed about the digital and network infrastructure of your building before making the final purchase. 

  1. Have a grasp of security measures

Flats on lower floors are conventionally considered unsafe as intruders often look for easy targets thus making such flats potentially more vulnerable to break-ins, due to the easier access to doors and windows compared to flats on higher levels. If you are willing to buy a flat on the ground floor, one of the important tips for buying a flat is to check the security arrangements in the society or on your floor. 

Furthermore, having a grasp of privacy and security measures taken by the builder should be on your checklist before buying a flat. This includes checking CCTV installations on the floors, along with the corridor space available in front of your flat. Having enough space outside your flat is important as corridor size varies in some housing complexes.

  1. A vantage point comes with a price 

For homebuyers who consider apartment view as an important factor, opting for flats on higher floors or those in the vicinity of the sea or other scenic areas is a good idea. However, you must remember, the higher the floor of the flat, the greater is the cost of purchase. With a better view of the locality, flats on higher levels also offer better light and ventilation, and residents cannot complain about disturbances from the streets and traffic noise as compared to the flats on the ground and lower floors. Higher floors are also usually free from the menace of mosquitoes and rodents. 

On the other hand, flats on the lower floors have other advantages—they are generally cooler than those on higher ones. Ground level flats thus require lower energy consumption. This becomes an important factor to consider in cities like Kolkata that have long and harsh summers. Furthermore, flats with north and east facing which are popular among homebuyers cost more than flats with west or south facing. 

  1. Don’t forget to check the number of lifts and emergency staircase 

Ideally, residential flats should have at least two or more lifts in each tower, so that you can rely on at least one lift when the other one is not working during electricity breakdowns. If you are moving in with elders and children, it becomes all the more important to opt for residential complexes with elevators. 

Before buying the flat, take into consideration that in case of an emergency, if the lifts don’t work, you have to check if the staircase is convenient to walk and has access to your floor. 

  1. Keep an eye out for hidden and additional charges in property documents 

Although the peculiarities in the property documentation may seem too technical and not your cup of tea, it is important to understand all the clauses in detail, this includes clauses about the penalty, grace period and flat’s possession, among others. 

Make sure to also do a thorough research on additional expenses such as GST, stamp duty, home loan processing fee, registration charges and all other charges.

In closing

Homeownership is usually the foundation of an average man’s growth in net worth. Your home will have a dramatic impact on your standard of living, so choose wisely and start your research early to help you make the best possible decisions. Good luck moving into your new home! 

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