MUMBAI: Along with developers, agents too will have to prove their ‘honesty’ in real estate dealings to avoid stringent action under the new real estate regulatory authority (RERA) regime.

According to the latest updates, around 4,300 of the 12,000 real estate agents or brokers across the state have registered themselves under RERA and another 4,000 may be added soon.

“This means around 4,000 agents who are not expected to register may not have been genuine and thrived by foisting inferior or flawed properties on consumers,” said a senior official.

“Brokers will have to show a great deal of honesty to join RERA.” Interestingly, realty agents do not have any time limit for registration unlike developers who have to register themselves and their projects with RERA by July 31. However, the conditions remain equally stringent for brokers.

“As per RERA, once agents are registered, it will become difficult for them to mislead home buyers. They cannot sell or buy homes without RERA registration which can be confirmed by consumers by checking registration certificates awarded to brokers by RERA or by putting their RERA number on the website to verify their genuinity,” said RERA member Vijay Satbeer Singh, a retired IAS officer. Singh, who retired as additional chief secretary of health department, had a long stint with the home department as principal secretary.

RERA chief Gautam Chatterjee, who retired as additional chief secretary and was OSD with chief minister’s office, said in case of unfair trade practices or misleading consumers, authority can fine agents Rs 10,000 a day or 5%-10% of the cost of residential and commercial space they will be marketing for builders. Though they can approach the tribunal against the authority’s orders, RERA has powers to order imprisonment of three years if the tribunal order is also not followed by them.

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