MahaRERA Explained: Compliance and Impact on Real Estate

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MahaRERA

MahaRERA is an authority that oversees the real estate sector in the state of Maharashtra. It was established under the central RERA Act 2016, which came into effect to curb various malpractices and corruptions exercised by real estate developers, promoters, agents, and various other real estate stakeholders.

Being aware of MahaRERA and its rules, regulations, and penalties is important for all who are involved in the real estate sector. In this blog, we will discuss what MahaRERA is all about, recent developments, and other factual information.

What is MahaRERA?

According to RERA rules, every state should enact its own RERA. Maharashtra was one of the first states in the country to enact its own RERA and is one of the most active bodies of RERA, with the highest volumes of projects being registered. With a total number of 45680 projects registered, 16073 complaints resolved, and 47320 agents registered as of April 2024, Maharashtra has the most proactive implementation of RERA.

Also, some of the unique aspects of MahaRERA make it mandatory for developers or promoters to create user-friendly websites, transparent advertising, and ongoing responsibility, which includes duties such as obtaining completion and occupancy certificates, providing essential services, etc. Moreover, in February 2024, MahaRERA launched MahaRERA-CRITI, a new official portal. A revamped website that is more user-friendly.

Registration Process For MahaRERA :

Developers and agents involved in selling or advertising real estate projects in Maharashtra must first register with MahaRERA.

MahaRERA Registration Process
MahaRERA Registration
MahaRERA Registration Process
MahaRERA Registration Process – Agent/Promoter

Here is the step-by-step Process for Registration for Promoters:

  1. Visit the official MahaRERA website: https://maharerait.mahaonline.gov.in/
  2. Start by clicking “New Registration” and selecting the “Promoter” option
  3. Fill out the required details about yourself or your company
  4. Verify your email address
  5. Set up your profile (individual or organization), enter past project experience, and change your password if needed
  6. Add details about your real estate project, whether it’s ongoing or a new one. Specify the buildings, amenities, and estimated cost, and upload relevant documents
  7. Enter information about contractors, architects, and any other professionals involved
  8. Declare any ongoing litigation related to the project
  9. Fill out activity details and timeline

Review all details carefully and proceed to make the payment, with the option to withdraw your application before submission if necessary.

For Promoters, a list of Documents is Required:

  1. PAN Card
  2. Copy of the legal title report
  3. Details of encumbrance
  4. Copy of Layout Approval (in case of layout) and Building Plan Approval (IOD)
  5. Signed Proforma of the Allotment Letter and Agreement for Sale
  6. Declaration in Form B
  7. Certificates of Architect (Form 1) (Mandatory for only ongoing projects)
  8. Certificates of Architect (Form 4)
  9. Certificates of CA (Form 3)
  10. Certificates of CA (Form 5)
  11. Certificates of Engineer (Form 2) (Mandatory for an ongoing project)
  12. Commencement Certificates

Essentially, as a developer, you need to prove you have legal standing, all the necessary permissions, a validated project plan and budget, and proper paperwork for allottees. It’s a comprehensive but important set of documents.

The goal of MahaRERA’s registration procedure is to encourage openness and accountability among real estate developers and agents. Additionally, it prevents deception and provides homeowners with precise and thorough information regarding real estate ventures.

For Real Estate Agents:

  1. Set up your user profile, individual or company, with past experience and branch details. Change the password if required
  2. Enter your registration details for the different states you operate in
  3. Upload the necessary documents asked for by agents
  4. Review and confirm all the information is accurate
  5. Make the payment to complete your registration

 Documents Required for Agents:

  1. PAN Card
  2. Particulars of Registration, including the bye-laws
  3. Memorandum of Association
  4. Articles of association 
  5. Self-certified copies of all letterheads
  6. A self-certified copy of the letterhead rubber stamp
  7. Acknowledgement receipts proposed to be used by the real estate agent
  8. Income tax returns of the last 3 years or declaration of any pending criminal or civil cases

Fees and charges in MahaRERA processes:

  1. For New Project Registration: Rs. 750
  2. For Project Extension or Withdrawal Request: Rs. 500
  3. Fees paid for project status updates, annually: Rs. 500
  4. Fees for New Agent Registration or Renewal: Rs. 500
  5. For filing a complaint: Rs. 50

Impact of MahaRERA

MahaRERA brought several policy changes that impacted the real estate sector in Maharashtra. These changes streamlined the realty sector to protect the interests of home buyers. Here are some changes brought about by the policy introduced by MahaRERA.

  1. Mandatory Disclosure of Project Details: Firstly, in a huge move towards transparency, MahaRERA has made it compulsory for developers to openly provide all details about their projects upfront. This includes giving comprehensive information about the project plans, layouts, construction timelines, and, most importantly, the pricing. Developers can no longer hold back any information; they have to share everything openly with MahaRERA as well as homebuyers examining the project.

    MahaRERA made it mandatory that every advertisement or promotion material related to a project contain a QR code, which should be easily visible and scan-able. The QR code links to the RERA certificate of the developers. This QR code helps home buyers easily verify the authenticity of the project to see if it is legitimate.
  2. Prohibition on Pre-Launch Bookings: Secondly, in a bold step against cheating tactics during pre-launches, MahaRERA has strictly prohibited developers from accepting any bookings or money for projects that haven’t received official registration approval yet. This policy effectively shuts down the once rampant malpractice of collecting funds from buyers based on incomplete claims and half-information during pre-launches.
  3. Mandatory Escrow Account: Furthermore, MahaRERA has instituted a financial safeguard through compulsory escrow accounts. Developers are now required to maintain separate dedicated escrow accounts for each real estate project. Every single rupee received from aspiring homebuyers must go into these accounts. Moreover, withdrawing money is strictly monitored; funds can only be taken out based on achieving pre-defined construction milestones. This ensures homebuyers’ hard-earned money doesn’t get diverted or misused.

    MahaRERA’s revolutionary policies, pushing for transparency, stopping deceptive pre-launch tactics, and protecting home buyers’ monetary interests through escrow accounts, have drastically overhauled and legitimized Maharashtra’s real estate industry. For years, it was trapped in a cycle of opaque and unethical practices by certain players. Now both developers and agents have no choice but to operate as per MahaRERA’s strict regulations.

Latest Developments in MahaRERA

  • Recent development on April 25, 2024, MahaRERA made it compulsory to include parking details in all legal documents of housing projects, By the builders. This ruling aimed to resolve many complaints and disputes from homebuyers regarding parking spaces. Non-compliance by builders may result in stringent action from MahaRERA.
  • From August 1, 2023, MahaRERA made including a QR code in every promotion material for their projects compulsory. A QR code helps property buyers verify the RERA certificate of the developer on the official website. The QR code must be included in such a way that it is easy to scan and readable beside the display of the registration number.
  • MahaRERA, in February 2023, brought a new circular to improve transparency and accountability; they made it mandatory for real estate developers to mention their bank account details in recovery warrants forwarded to the revenue department. This new rule is meant to improve compensation recovery and alleviate the financial burden on homebuyers.
  • Maharashtra recently reported a record-breaking increase in the completion of housing projects in the state. In 2023, 3,927 housing projects were successfully completed, showing a remarkable improvement in the rate of projects completed compared to 2022, with 1,749 completed projects. This record sets the highest number of projects completed since MahaRERA was established in 2017.
  • Recently, MahaRERA introduced a new rule that will be applicable from April 2024. This new circular establishes a real estate project grading system. This grading system is meant to increase transparency among homebuyers in Maharashtra. This rating would provide information regarding the quality and reliability of real estate projects.
  • This project grading system, which MahaRERA has introduced, classifies real estate projects by various aspects such as construction quality, adherence to timelines, amenities provided, customer satisfaction, and many more. Grading the projects of each developer will allow homebuyers to have a more clear understanding of the quality and reliability of each project and, therefore, buy property more informedly.
  • The past fiscal year ended March 31, 2024, saw the registration of 4,332 new real estate projects at MahaRERA, representing 80% of the total number of applications. 

This proposal focuses on three broad areas, with Pune having the highest number of recently registered projects at 1,172, followed by Thane (597), Mumbai suburb (528), Raigad (450), Nagpur (336), and Nasik (310) Among the projects registered on the REIDeP platform, the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), comprising Mumbai, Mumbai Suburban, and Thane, recorded the highest number of projects in 1976. The western part of Maharashtra comes in second, with and around Pune handling 1415 projects.

  • MahaRERA launched a new revamped official portal called MahaRERA-CRITI in February 2024. This portal is more user-friendly and provides useful information to enhance transparency and efficiency for home buyers and developers.
  • MahaRERA has taken new measures to ensure the timely completion of projects. The authority has started a micro-monitoring cell. This system keeps track of ongoing projects and prompts builders for Quarterly Progress Reports (QPR) to identify any defaults in the project timeline.

For this, MahaRERA conducts thorough scrutiny to verify it meets all legal, financial, and technical compliance norms. Only after this strict pre-registration checking is a project allowed to proceed. These measures of close monitoring, regular progress tracking, and stringent pre-approval processes aim to safeguard home buyers’ interests by ensuring projects get delivered as scheduled without delays and in full adherence to regulations.

Challenges Ahead in MahaRERA

Enforcement of the RERA Act

Many developers that have failed to comply with the RERA Act have been sent notices regarding the same, like advertising plots for sale without registration. Still, the law lacks proper enforcement to ensure penalties are given to such developers.

Lack of information:

However, MahaRERA, despite its efforts, still has to face the challenges of supplying the public with all the necessary information, including details on the price of apartment buildings and the location of escrow accounts. Insufficient and confusing data can erode both investors’ and homebuyers’ confidence levels.

Processing and Redressing Grievances:

With a considerable volume of cases reviewed and redressed, MahaRERA needs to carry on improving its system, which will in turn increase efficiency and effectiveness. MahaRERA must improve efficiency and effectiveness in handling complaints. This included Disabling advertisements for dissatisfactory projects and imposing penalties for those who miss deadlines are among MahaRERA’s proactive protection measures towards buyers.

Disclosure of information and website usability via the MahaRERA website have been noted, which presents in detail about projects and supports decision-making. MahaRERA needs to check and make sure that the platform remains easy to access and has information that is updated frequently. The site must have information on current projects, completion dates for new projects, and the credentials of project brokers.

Conclusion

The establishment of MahaRERA has been very beneficial for the real estate sector in general, It has brought transparency, accountability and efficiency into various stakeholders of the real estate sector including real estate broker, developer, builders and companies. From the perspective of a homebuyer it has brought huge relief to the process of dispute resolution, reception of factual information regarding projects and buying and searching experience in general.

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