After years of dilly-dallying, many builders have started quoting prices of apartments on the basis of carpet area, instead of the super built-up area, which had become the norm.
Though this has not resulted in price reduction, the move has been welcomed by buyers as they will now pay for the actual area of their property.
Take the case of Bombay Realty, which is quoting Rs38,000 per square feet for its project, Island City Centre, at Naiguam.
“We have to make more efforts to sell the apartments as our price seems to be high. We explain our rates by comparing them with those of competitors, and convince buyers by informing them that we are selling on carpet area,” said Durgesh Mehta, chief executive officer, Bombay Realty. Mehta says that such a move enhances the reputation of the builder as it ensures transparency.
Despite the state government’s diktat, builders have been flouting the rule of selling flats on carpet area.
They have been charging on super built-up area, which also includes the common areas like staircases and common open spaces. The problem arose as builders started calculating common areas on whim, which ranged from 33% to 50% more space.
Hiranandani Builders offers a price chart detailing both the carpet as well as the super built-up area, along with the rates for both. Its Lavina project at Ghodbunder Road in Thane is being sold at Rs13,768 per square feet for the 421-square-feet carpet area, while it is Rs9,200 for the 630-square-feet super built-up area.
Other builders quoting on carpet area include United Infra, which has priced its product at Rs45,000 per square on carpet for its Khar project which has apartments from 800 square feet onwards. Manchester Builder is selling at Rs55,000 per square feet for houses from 700 square feet onwards at Khar.
“The best thing about carpet area is that buyers know exactly how much space they will get as every builder used to have his own calculations, and buyers would feel cheated many times,” said Vibhoo Mehra, CEO, Mumbai Properties, a real estate consultancy firm.
However, many feel just charging on carpet will not work until prices drop.
“This is a good move, but it hardly makes a difference as builders recover the money anyway. The need of the hour is
to reduce the price and make flats affordable,” said real estate expert Ajay Chaturvedi.