Registration of properties may soon need Aadhaar

Property registrations in Tamil Nadu may no longer be facilitated without Aadhaar card as the state government is mandating the 12-digit unique identification number for the purpose. The move stems out of a recent fraud involving creation of forged Power of Attorney (PoA) for a plot worth Rs 4 crore at Madhavaram of a city-based resident currently residing overseas using impersonated identity proof with the alleged connivance of the sub-registrar.

Registration department officials told TOI a proposal has been sent to the government to make Aadhaar card compulsory for land registrations. “Once Aadhaar is mandated, people should provide their Aadhaar card as an identification proof. Our biometric devices would be linked to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) central server to authenticate that the seller is the real owner of the property,” a registration official said.

It is learned that the proposal is in the advanced stage with the government as it has to amend the Tamil Nadu Registration Rules to make authentication through Aadhaar card for land registrations. Registration department sources said that mandating Aadhaar would help eradicate fraudulent registrations.

According to data available with the state government, Tamil Nadu has a 95% Aadhaar coverage. Of the 7.65 lakh population in the state, 7.27 lakh have Aadhaar cards. “In the cases, where people do not have Aadhaar cards, the procedures of the UIDAI would be followed to facilitate the registrations,” the source said.

In a recent case of fraudulent registration at Madhavaram sub-registrar office, a fake document was created in the name of the original owner of the 4,200 square feet vacant plot such that she has given the PoA to another person. “The forged PoA came to light when encumbrance certificate was applied to sell the property, whose market value is worth Rs 4 crore,” the official added. The case is under central crime branch police for investigation and an FIR has been registered, in which four persons, including George, the sub-registrar of Madhavaram, have been named as accused.

Yogesh Kabirdoss, The Times of India, Chennai

Chennai district likely to expand to 426 sqkm

Chennai district likely to expand to 426 sqkm mid-July

More than seven months after the state announced the expansion of Chennai district, the city’s boundaries are set to get wider by mid July. Areas falling under the purview of Greater Chennai Corporation would be part of the expanded Chennai district to facilitate better coordination between the civic body and district administration for executing various administrative activities.

Revenue department sources said that the procedure to elicit the view of officials on choice of district has been completed in Kancheepuram district. “Government servants have provided their preferred option to either work in Chennai or stick to Kancheepuram district,” a revenue official said. But, the process is still under way in Tiruvallur district. According to plan, 67 revenue villages from Alandur and Sholinganallur Taluks in Kancheepuram and Ambattur, Madavaram, Maduravoyal and Tiruvottiyur taluks in Tiruvallur district would be merged with Chennai district, taking the total number of revenue villages in the expanded city to 122.

Official sources said that the state is expected to make a notification regarding the merger of the urbanised neighbourhood revenue villages mid-July. “It is likely to be on July 15,” a senior revenue department official said.

This expansion would increase the size of Chennai from 176sqkm to 426sqkm covering all 15 zones of Greater Chennai Corporation. The city will have an additional revenue divisional officer from the existing two. The state had missed its April 1 target for issuing the notification due to delay in completing the task of getting the views of government staff working in these taluks on their preferred place of work.

Yogesh Kabirdoss, The Times of India, Chennai

Online registration of properties nets Tamil Nadu 19% more revenue

Online registration of properties nets Tamil Nadu 19% more revenue

There has been a 32% increase in the number of registrations of properties and documents and 19% increase in registration revenue in Tamil Nadu during the period from February 13, 2018, to June 20, 2018, when the registration process went online, over the corresponding period last year.

While the overall number of registration of documents went up from 6.43 lakh to 8.51 lakh, revenue increased from Rs 2,234 crore to Rs 2,660 crore during the last four months when the system went online. The hike in registrations is primarily being viewed as a positive fallout of computerisation of the registration process, introduced on February 13, 2018, said IG registration J Kumaragurubaran.

Among the sub-registrar (SR) offices that saw an exponential growth in revenue are Mylapore – Rs 39 crore to Rs 72 crore – and Saidapet I – Rs 54 crore to Rs 70 crore. In some sub-registrar offices, especially those in and around Chennai like Thiruporur, Anna Nagar, Ashok Nagar, Sembium, Saidapet I and Pallavaram, there is a considerable fall in the number of registrations after the online system was introduced. Developers are of the opinion that the fall in registrations in some sub-registrar offices could be owing to man-made glitches, aimed at showing that the online system was a disaster.

“We find a lot of resistance among SR office staff to the online system. Blaming poor net connectivity for the delay caused in registration of documents, the staff subject customers to untold hardships,” said a developer.

Computerisation of registration process has brought in automation on a large scale. Apart from online booking, even the back office operation is done online at present, said Kumaragurubaran. The department has engaged 500 data entry operators through a contractor to handle the additional workload like scanning images and documents, he said. “Introduction of the online system has increased transparency in administration and accountability of registration department staff. We are keeping a close watch on SR offices that perform below par and from where lots of customer complaints emerge. Wherever people are found wilfully delaying the procedures, strict action will follow,” said Kumaragurubaran.

Though the overall revenue trend looks positive, it is too early to project the growth for the financial year, he said.

The slashing of guideline values across the state a year ago could have played a major role in boosting real estate transactions and registration revenue, said Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Association of India Chennai chapter Vice-President S Sridharan.

Source: Economic Times, Chennai

After 20 years Chennai Corporation increases property tax rates

After two decades, Corporation increases property tax rates

After two decades, Corporation increases property tax rates

Civic body expected to mop up ₹1,160 crore after hike

After years of inertia, the Chennai Corporation and other urban local bodies in Tamil Nadu have revised the property tax rates. The new rates will be effective from this half-year period i.e., April-September 2018. The increase will not be more than 100% for commercial and rented residential buildings, and not more than 50% for residential buildings.

While the Chennai Corporation last revised property tax in 1998, other local bodies in the State revised it in 2008.

Accepting the proposals of the Chennai Corporation Commissioner, the Commissioner of Municipal Administration and the Director of Town Panchayats, the State government has issued an order paving the way for the hike in tax rate.

Following the revision, the Chennai Corporation is expected to collect ₹180 crore every half-year from 10.5 lakh residential building owners and ₹400 crore from 1.5 lakh non-residential building owners. Property tax collection in Chennai is expected to increase to ₹1,160 crore a year.

Last week, a Division Bench of the Madras High Court directed the Municipal Administration and Water Supply Principal Secretary Harmander Singh to take a decision with regard to the proposal submitted by the Chennai Corporation Commissioner D. Karthikeyan within two weeks regarding the revision of property tax and report to the court during the next hearing on August 3.

Assessees who have already paid property tax for this half-year will have to pay the arrears. “We will issue guidelines for general revision this week,” said an official.

In Chennai, all the 12 lakh property tax assessees will be asked to file property tax returns with the Chennai Corporation Revenue Department, with details on the extent of the building and the usage of the building. While the revision will impact all assessees, those whose nature of usage as changed from residential to commercial will find the hike particularly steep. During the previous revision in 1998, the civic body processed the property tax returns of assessees manually. So it required more manpower and at least six months to process the returns. Now, with advancement of technology, the civic bodies may encourage online submission. Currently, the Chennai Corporation has less than 80 property tax assessors to scrutinise the tax returns.

“Unlike Bengaluru, we do not impose any penalty on assessees who fail to file property tax returns on time. So the collection of property tax returns will be a challenge,” said an official.

Source The Hindu

Chennai development body to ease reclassification process

The Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) has introduced a slew of measures to reduce the inordinate delay in processing the reclassification of land use applications in the Chennai Metropolitan Area (CMA).

The measures include admission of such applications directly by the planning authority. Hitherto, the reclassification applications must be submitted only to the concerned local body, which would be forwarded to the CMDA for processing.

A recent office order of the CMDA said the reclassification proposals may also be admitted directly to the CMDA along with all enclosures as per the checklist, in addition of admitting in the local bodies concerned.

After introduction of the online admission for reclassification proposals, the applications should be submitted only online, it added.

Presently, scrutiny of registered documents is carried out to verify unauthorised subdivisions and the requirement for Open Space Reservation (OSR).

Noting that the detailed scrutiny of registered documents was time consuming, the order said the process would be taken up at the development stage instead of detailed scrutiny at reclassification level.

However, a disclaimer clause that the land use variation approval is not confirming the ownership right of the applicant over the property under reference and any claim on right or title over the property shall have to be proved before the appropriate/competent court to decide on the ownership’ may be included, the office order further said.

Yogesh Kabirdoss, Economic Times, Chennai

Chennai will be the fourth Indian city to join the league of 50 data-driven global cities

Soar towards sustainability

Chennai will be the fourth Indian city to join the league of 50 data-driven global cities and it holds a lot of promise in the time to come.

There is a new development that can change the face of urban governance in Chennai. The World Council on City Data (WCCD) is a global network of data-driven cities under the City Data for India Initiative. A few days back, it was announced that Chennai Smart City would soon join the list of three Indian cities (Pune, Surat and Jamshedpur) after getting certification from the WCCD. Currently, there are over 50 cities certified by the WCCD, the first ever ISO standard for cities.

Data indeed holds the key to future decisions. As a Chennai Corporation official puts it, “Data is missing in most Indian cities and even when it exists, it does so in silos. Urban planning requires accurate information about several factors such as pollution, encroachment, water bodies and green cover,” he says, adding that, “Drone mapping has a lot of potential in the time to come. Planning itself can take a while. One department cannot access the data in another department.”

Data collection:

So, from which areas will data be captured? If the website of WCCD is an indicator, there will be strong data points for cities that come under its purview. From basic details such as the population of the city, land area, GDP, and density of population, data will be gathered for several other factors such as population dependency ratio, number of occupied dwelling units, percentage of non-citizens in a city, employment indicators, energy consumption, and state of environment, finance, health and governance.

However, according to Ajit Chordia, MD of a leading real estate group, “Chennai has made it to the list more due to its past success with infrastructure, public transport, safety and decent water supply. While other cities are moving fast, Chennai is stagnating. Finances are poor; in a few years, water supply and sewage will not support the growing city and Chennai will take a dip in the ranking of the WCCD. Unless huge investments are made, cities like Vijayawada and Hyderabad will overtake Chennai.”

Improving urban governance

Making data on cities available in the public domain, as is the case in cities like London and Singapore, can bring about a major change for the good of the country. To start with, it will improve city planning and effective comparisons with other cities, and create benchmarks for measurement, which will lead to improvement of urban governance. A corporation official is of the view that, “Greenhouse gas mapping and resilience mapping can greatly benefit the city; these measurement aspects will be along the lines of globally-set standards. The idea is to constantly improve.”

Arjun Narayanan, Times Property, The Times of India, Chennai

Chennai ~ Senior living – the emerging market

Senior living – the emerging market

Chennai

The desire among today’s senior population to lead an independent and productive life has translated into an opportunity for real estate developers.

India is currently witnessing a demographic shift, owing to a steady increase in life expectancy on the back of improved healthcare access. Consider the fact that our much touted ‘demographic dividend’, urban youth population, will reach a median age of about 29 years in less than a decade (according to UN-HABITAT), making us one of the youngest nations globally. Such benefits, however, come with their own realities including an equally large ageing population in the next few decades.

In recent years, there has also been an aspirational change in the mindset of senior citizens in general. There is an increasing desire among today’s senior population to lead a secure, independent and productive life after retirement. This growing trend has translated into an opportunity for real estate developers to provide residential products customised to the specific needs of the elderly in India.

Factors to be considered:

While the southern part of the country was one of the early adopters of the concept of senior living, we are witnessing projects coming up across several parts of the country in recent times.

With affordability being a key factor for end-users, developers of such projects need to keep construction costs as low as possible;

Hence projects need to be in the peripheral areas of cities where such large tracts of land are more affordable than locations near the city centre.

The perks:

To ensure that senior living projects are viable, amenities are a must in the project.

Projects need to have basic amenities including 24X7 power and water supply, 100 percent power back up, security, maintenance and housekeeping.

Other specialised offerings include, assisted care for the elderly and ailing, dedicated medical staff and tie-ups with surrounding hospitals, in-house healthcare offerings (medicine store, emergency response system, doctor on call, nurses, etc).

For connectivity and travel, transport facilities to and from surrounding social spaces (parks, malls and restaurants), recreational facilities, community rooms, concierge services for day-to-day requirements of the residents and so on.

While the finer details would vary from project to project, these are a few key amenities, which should be part of any senior living project in India.

Over the past two years, several regulatory reforms have brought about a change in the real estate sector in the India. Increasing transparency coupled with a changing consumer mindset has led to confidence returning in the market, and the emergence of alternate asset classes. Such assets are also garnering the interest of investors who can see the long-term benefits in the changed environment. While such new formats might see a comparatively slower pace of expansion vis-à-vis other formats such as Tech Parks and Logistics Parks, the growth of this sunrise segment is imminent in the longterm, given a sustained demand for the same from a large aging population in decades to come.

Anshuman Magazine, Times Property, The Times of India, Chennai

Sholinganallur emerging as Chennai’s property hotspot

Sholinganallur, located on OMR (Old Mahabalipuram Road) in South Chennai, is one of the latest property hotspots of the city. With the shoreline close by, the beaches and also a lake, the proximity to the IT corridor, the commercial establishments and business and entertainment centres -all makes this self-contained suburb one of the most sought-after localities in the city.

It all started in the early 2000s, with the Tamil Nadu government establishing the IT corridor along the OMR. Various IT parks as well as dedicated SEZs came up, and today, the area houses major BPO and IT/ITES companies. The lure of living close to the workplace led IT professionals to this locality.

Demand for residences began increasing – both for end-use and investment – and residential options began springing up. The Tamil Nadu Housing Board has built a township of 4,000 houses here, with IT parks, arterial roads, schools, parks, and so on. Many private builders have developed properties offering various options – multi-storey apartments, single-floor apartments, independent houses, villas and plots.

The locality boasts of good social and physical infrastructure that makes life easy for its inhabitants – good schools, other educational institutions, hospitals, shopping centres, banks, restaurants, etc.  Besides, it is known to have good water supply and no electricity problem.

Sholinganallur, being a major junction, connects the ECR (East Coast Road) and the OMR to all the important places in the city. The eastern side of Sholinganallur is well connected through the ECR Link Road and the western side through the Velachery Main Road.

The four-laning of roads has eased traffic considerably and the arterial roads provide efficient connections to the nucleus of the city. The international airport is a 45-minute drive and the railway station is 90 minutes away.  Roads are wide and public transport to and fro is good, comprising buses, taxis and auto-rickshaws.

Some of the prominent builders in the area are ASV Constructions, Adroit Urban Developers Pvt Ltd, Baashyaam Constructions Pvt Ltd, Deccan Estates, Lancor Holdings Ltd, Ceebros Construction, PS Srijan Developers LLP, The Nest, AKB Developers and Promoters, etc. – with the locality average rate of Rs 4,200-6,100 per sq ft.

Amenities offered are the latest, including swimming pool, jogging and strolling tracks, bar lounges, guest accommodation, indoor play areas, gymnasium and others. Also available are 2 and 3BHK builder floor houses, in approximately the same price range. The Mantri Group offers 3, 4 and 5BHK villas in the range of Rs 3.6-5.6 crore.

The area holds a lot of promise with the Indian Maritime University complex being developed here; the university has existed for many years, but the complex is coming up in a big way, with an aquarium, museum, food courts, a residential complex planned; a 5-star hotel in partnership with private players is being considered as well. Further, in the offing in Sholinganallur, is a financial city by TIDCO – the blueprint of which has been under consideration for some time – where global financial corporations will set up shop.

These developments are sure to drive up business activity and real estate demand in the area; yet, because of the shoreline, the area will always retain its scenic charm. Asset appreciation is, hence, expected to be steady in this area. All eyes, therefore, on Sholinganallur!

Source Swati Kamal, Magicbricks Bureau/Chennai

How to take a premise on license basis in chennai

How to take a premise on license basis

Chennai

If there are many licensees (unrelated as opposed to a family, where it is an accepted practice for one member to sign) seeking to take a premise on license basis, these are things to remember:

It is advisable to sign the leave and license agreement since it will guarantee equal protection/recognition as licensees;

Licensees need to ensure that the agreement explicitly records split of license fee payable and also respective obligations towards his/her share of the aggregate license fee. However, all licensees will be responsible for total fee;

Licensees should insert a provision (in case one of them wishes to exit), wherein the entire leave and license agreement need not terminate, but can have the remaining licensees take over exiting licensee’s obligations – with consent of the licensor;

If the licensee is going to incur expenses in furnishing the premises, add a clause that ensures licensor will have to repay such money (albeit on a depreciable value basis) spent in case of premature termination of agreement;

Licensee should reserve right to retain possession of premises, free of rent, if upon termination of term or agreement, the licensor fails/refuses to return security deposit;

Licensee should insist on adding a clause protecting and recognising permissive use of licensed premises by the licensee for duration of the term, even if the licensor sells/mortgages etc, the licensed premises.

Source Malav Virani, Times Property, The Times of India, Chennai   

home insurance policy gives you the dual advantage of securing a home loan with ease

Take cover

Editor | May 21, 2018 @ 12:46 PM

Chennai

A home insurance policy gives you the dual advantage of securing a home loan with ease and protecting your abode against risks of all kinds. Experts give you a bird’s eye view…

A home is where you put most of your life’s savings into. It’s your comfort zone for the rest of your life and your family’s too. And you wouldn’t want that jeopardised for anything in the world. Keeping your house safe against any peril should be a priority on your to-do list. Through a home insurance policy, you can recover the cost of the damage, thus giving you the opportunity to restore your home and peace of mind. Over to the experts:

What it covers?

• A basic cover, called ‘Fire’ policy indemnifies damage due to certain perils such as fire, lightning, riots, malicious damage, landslides, floods, explosions, earthquake, etc. These are largescale damages with a low probability of occurrence; hence, less premium is charged. The policy excess, or the minimum deduction of a claim is higher, between Rs 10,000 and Rs 25,000. The claims are strictly paid on a reinstatement basis (which is the cost of reconstruction).

Winning policy

• Some private insurance companies have an all-risk policy for homes where the person can purchase a policy at the current market value of the apartment. There are two advantages – one, the peril need not be a specific one; for example, a building collapse is not covered in the fire policy but is in the allrisk one. Two, the policy pays out the insured value or market value of an equivalent apartment so that re-building is optional. These premiums are higher, excess is lower and coverage is wider.

Yashodan Heblekar, Insurance Advisor, Bajaj Allianz Insurance, Goa

Comprehensive cover

• An immense home insurance policy covers all components in your compound such as garage, fence, etc. You can also opt for add-ons and protect your furniture, electronics, home appliances, etc.

Insurance claim

For a claim for crimes like burglary or malicious damage to your property, report to the police and get a crime reference number, which your insurer will require as a part of the claim;

Explain the details to your insurer and ask for the relevant claim form as soon as the damage has occurred. Calls to a helpline will be detailed in your policy documents too;

Put together as much evidence and the circumstances surrounding it – photos, estimates for building work, witness statements, damaged items you’re claiming for, etc;

If possible, supply receipts, or quotations, etc for items;

Reconsider small claims. If you have built up a decent no-claims bonus, losing it could mean that over the next few years, the increased cost of your home cover outweighs the value of your claim.

Varun Manian, MD, Radiance Realty, Chennai

Application eligibility

Home insurance policy can be bought by individuals or companies; The owner/occupant of the property needs to be an Indian citizen; A multi-year policy can be purchased only by the owner of the house/flat; A housing society can buy it to provide cover for the building as well as the common utilities. It can be applied in the name of the society by any authorised member of the society’s managing committee; Many insurance companies offer cover for the contents and possessions of the tenants against loss or damage by lightning, fire, theft, smoke, flood, etc. This policy will shield everything from personal belongings, furniture to electrical items, etc; The amount of insurance premium payable to the insurance company depends on the applicant’s age, home loan amount and tenure, applicant’s medical history.

Reaping the benefits

• A home insurance policy is highly recommended as it shields the house, contents of the house and the family from financial setbacks, property damage, and personal injuries in case of unfortunate incidents, natural calamities, lawsuits, man-made and anti-social activities. The policy supports the individual to financially recover from the loss and rebuild the home. In the process of restoring an insured house in the aftermath of damages, the insurance company will not only cover your renovation expenses but also your rental outflow on another accommodation. You can choose a bundled product wherein the premium amount is funded by the lender. Check if the policy covers the death benefit, death by accident, permanent disability benefit, etc.

Harshil Mehta, Joint MD and CEO, DHFL, Mumbai

Source: Leena Mudbidri, Times Property, The Times of India, Chennai