The state’s legislative council passed the Maharashtra Housing (Regulation and Development) Act, 2012 on Wednesday.
The landmark housing legislation, which calls for setting up a regulatory authority to regulate realty deals and settle disputes between buyers and developers, has already been passed in the legislative assembly, and will become a law after it gets the approval of the President. This procedure normally takes a few months.
“We had got around 4,000 suggestions on which we deliberated, before finalising the bill. The regulatory authority will have the powers of a civil court and it will need to address complaints from house owners within three months,” said minister of state for home Sachin Ahir, while proposing the bill.
Besides, builders will need to disclose details of their projects on the website of the regulatory authority, including information pertaining to land title, layouts, flat size, structural and financial details.
A major change, in the 24 amendments made to the act, he said, was that the developer will now have a defect liability period of five years.
Sena legislator Neelam Gorhe said that there were cases where a single flat was sold to more than one buyer, which she hoped would be curbed.
The bill calls for a developer to honour all his commitments pertaining to specific carpet area, club house, etc.
If he does not do so, the housing authority can sentence the developer or promoter to three years' imprisonment or charge a penalty of Rs 10 lakh for not complying with its orders. Alteration in plans without the consent of the buyers can lead to a fine of Rs 1 crore.
It can also cancel registration of a project if the developer does not have valid rights to the land. Likewise, a home buyer can face a penalty of Rs. 10,000 or 1% of the sale price for not complying with the sale agreement.