Builder stops paying maintenance dues suddenly and behaving rudely
We purchased a ready-to-move 3 bhk flat within a residential complex (Verdant Orchid) in South Kolkata and registration done on 22nd April 2016. Flat registration was required to get final disbursement of bank loan. The builder promised to handover the possession and complete all pending activities within the premises, and with this trust , we paid on time all the amount which comprises associated funds (corpus, sinking, association, generator, transformer etc) as demanded. The completion certificate was received by us from Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) on Sep 2016.
However till date the status of pending activities is still in progress and builder is not agreeing to give any tentative completion date. The association formed internally has not been registered yet by builder. Suddenly the builder sent us an email that they will not able to continue maintenance from Sep 2017 on-wards and asking us to take care of the maintenance responsibilities ourselves effective from Oct 2017. We have not received any formal possession letter or association hand over notice yet and we are still in dark as to when we will ever get them.
In this situation my question is -
1. Can builder suddenly refuse to stop maintenance without any prior notice or without handing over formal possession letter.
2. When are we, the flat owners supposed to start paying towards maintenance? Till what time builder is supposed to pay the maintenance?
3. There are many pending works left to be completed by builder, and hence getting possession is delayed for indefinite period. Can builder refuse to stop maintenance in this situation?
Please suggest best possible solution for this,
Asked 2 years ago in Property Law from Kolkata, West Bengal
We have not received any formal possession or allotment letter neither any association registration happened nor any maintenance hand over notice issued in advance, but builder has allowed us to stay in the flat, so in that case you can say that we have got unofficial physical possession of the property.
We have paid one year maintenance following our property registration on April 2016. However as per promise of completing the pending activities on time, builder is not taking any serious note to them now and hence most of the amenities are not in place yet and still in work in progress or almost on hold. Despite repeated complaints, the builder is taking deaf ear to our concerns now.
Builder is saying that we are supposed to take charge of our maintenance one year after receiving OC ( received on Sep 2016) and strictly refused to pay further maintenance from their side. It has also come to know our notice that builder has not paid full amount to elevator company or water treatment plant and hence proper AMC is not in place.
My question in this situation is -
1. Per law, can builder stop maintenance without providing allotment or possession letter and in such a situation when many pending activities are yet to be completed?
2. There is no clear schedule mentioned in the agreement or conveyance deed as to tentative project completion or possession date neither mention of period as to when purchasers are liable to bear maintenance charges.
Asked 2 years ago
Thanks for your responses and much appreciated and I am grateful.
To clarify further below is the current situation in bullets .
1. All the flats (there are total 36 flats) are sold within the complex but registration not done for all.
2. I have done registration on April 2016 and paid maintenance for one year and other associated miscellaneous charges (sinking, generator, association formation, corpus, electricity, transformer etc).
3. With Builder's verbal consent I took physical possession of the flat but no formal allotment letter issued till date. The property is completed from inside, but there are pending activities around and within the complex premises like unfinished boundary wall, inadequate fire fighting and lighting equipment, incomplete gym, repair damaged driveways, improper sewage control and there are other visible gaps within existing maintenance deployed by the builder
4. Like me, around 14-15 more families started living in the complex with Builder's verbal consent without having the possession letter. Other flats, though sold away are still empty.
5. OC / Completion Certificate received from Kolkata Municipal Corporation on Sep 2016
6. Formal Possession was supposed to be given by Dec 2016, but till now builder is not taking serious concern in completing the pending activities. There is no clear clause in the sale agreement or conveyance deed about the project completion date. Because of this, getting possession letter is being delayed for indefinite period. Builder is giving excuses for the delay like labor shortage every time for last one year.
7. Soceity has been formed internally but registration not done.
Despite showing no sign of completing the pending activities, Builder is now saying that by law, purchasers are liable to bear and take charge of the maintenance on their own one year after OC issued that is, Sep 2017. Can builder claim like this and forcefully impose the maintenance charges on us without completing pending activities and issue formal possession letter?
Asked 2 years ago