Before You Buy

    • The Title Report : Colloquially known as the ‘property card’ or in some places ‘saat-bara’, this is an investigation into the title of the land over a period of 30 years. It ensures the marketability of the land in the hands of the original owner. Ask for the detailed report, not merely an abbreviated certificate. This should be prepared for the seller by his lawyer & should be checked by your lawyer. If the title is not clear you can be evicted from the property at a later date.


  • Property under construction : If you are buying a new house, ask for an Allotment Letter or Development Agreement detailing the agreed price, payment & construction schedule, house plans, delivery date & builder’s liability in case of late completion or problems after possession. Make sure that the developer has clear title to the land, & that the relevant local authorities have approved the building plans. Once construction is over, ask for the completion & occupation certificates, which indicate that the building has adhered to municipal requirements. Some other costs you will incur: society formation charge, transfer charge, deposit for electricity meter, charge for registration of agreement.
  • Constructed property: Make sure that the seller has the title & possession of the property as well as the right to transfer the property. Check that the relevant approvals, if any, have been obtained from the land development/planning authority & the Income tax department. Ensure that there are no tenants & get a declaration that the property was purchased from the seller’s funds & is not mortgaged. Place a notice in the newspapers about the proposed purchase. Get a No Objection Certificate from the builder or society. Check that dues such as property tax, society, water & electricity bills etc. have been paid in full. Decide who will pay society transfer charges. Take possession of all relevant documents & also the original allotment letter, completion certificate, occupation certificate and all other documents given by the original builder.


37-I Provision And Other Procedures

Formalities in Purchase of Property

Valuation for Real Estate
Verification of the Title of the vendor

This is the most important aspect of a purchase transaction of an immovable property and may be competently handled by a reputed lawyer/solicitor/chartered accountant etc. The verification is necessary from following two angles:

  1. Validity of Title: The vendor must have a clear, valid and marketable title over the immovable property which is the subject matter of transaction. This would require a close scrutiny of documents of title produced by the vendor. The document must be a registered document.
  2. Obtaining of Non-encumbrances certificate.


    An “Agreement to Sell” may be executed once the contract for purchase of immovable property has been finalised. Besides that, value of the property, the “Agreement to Sell” must provide about the payment of transfer fees, stamp duty and registration fee which differs from state to state and is quite substantial. This may either be payable by vendor or the buyer or may be shared equally by the two as per the agreement. The final sale would however, be subject to buyer obtaining permission from Reserve Bank, where necessary, and seller obtaining permission of competent authority under Urban Land (Ceiling & Regulation) Act, 1976 where necessary. The “Agreement to Sell” does not require compulsory registration even if it contains recital of the payment of a part or whole of the purchase money.