Sucheta Dalal :The real estate jinx: Carpet or super built-up?
Sucheta Dalal

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The real estate jinx: Carpet or super built-up?  

October 14, 2009

Real estate developers are back to their old game, maybe this time with a vengeance. Not only are many of them planning to raise money from the capital market, but many are also offering properties on a super-built up area basis which is more than 50% of the carpet area. In many cases carpet area is not revealed even with persistent questioning.


“Most of the builders have inflated figures for super built-up area. Barring a few, none of the builders are ready to sell on a carpet area basis. If a developer offers you 800 sq ft area then mostly 400 sq ft is the actual area of the flat and the rest are the common amenities (stair cases, lobby, lift and other common areas),” said Pankaj Kapoor, founder and chief executive officer, Liases Foras, a property research firm.


These common areas should not be individually charged to the prospective buyer—they should be collectively paid for by all residents of the housing complex. The buyer should be aware of the amount he is forking out for these common spaces. 


Kapoor also explained that prior to 2000, the super built-up area used to range between 18% - 20% plus carpet area. But now the scenario has changed. Between 2003- 2004 the super built-up area was approximately 35%, between 2004-2005 it went up to approximately 40%, in 2006 it went up again by approximately 5%, that is 45% and after 2008 it is beyond 50%.


Kapoor believes that it should be made mandatory to sell by carpet area rate basis and strict laws are required to enforce this stipulation. Government and banks are now coming together and are planning to make this rule—selling on carpet area basis— compulsory for all developers. A few developers—like Mayfair, Cosmos and Mantri—have started selling on carpet area basis. —Pallabika Ganguly [email protected]


-- Sucheta Dalal