I bought in re-sale two combined flat (1 RK + 1 RK) and have two agreements and pay maintenance for both the units. Recently the society levied a 'lift repair fund' charge and charged me twice the amount saying there are two units. I don't mind paying this, but in another wing, there are some flats which are bigger than mine and have two agreements, yet they are charged only for one unit.
On enquiring with the Man. Comm. I was told the BMC, Mumbai, has 'assessed' those flats as one unit and therefore they are charged as single unit and my flat is assessed as two units(!) and so have been charged accordingly. What I fail to understand is how the BMC has assessed them as one flat despite them having two agreements? Since it is difficult for me to buy this point of view, I would like to know 'Can a combined flat with two agreements be assessed as one unit and can the BMC's assessment be a valid argument in such matters of levying a charge twice only to those whose units have been assessed as two while not charging those whose units have been assessed as one, disregarding the fact that they too have two agreements?'
Thank you for your esteemed reply.
Asked 6 months ago in Property Law from Mumbai, Maharashtra
1) file RTI and obtain copy of building sanctioned plans
2) check the property assessment order of BMC
3) 2 flats with 2 separate agreement would not be asseseed as one unit
4) society should charge those flat owners maintenance separately for each flat
Builders violate with impunity the sanctioned building plans and indulge in deviations much to the prejudice of the
planned development of the city and at the peril of the occupants of the premises constructed or of the inhabitants of the city at large.
Unwary purchasers in search of roof over their heads and purchasing flats/apartments from builders, find themselves having fallen prey and become victims to the designs of unscrupulous builders. The builder conveniently walks away having pocketed the money leaving behind the unfortunate occupants to face the music in the event.
Though the local authorities have the staff consisting of engineers and inspectors whose duty is to keep a watch on building activities and to promptly stop the illegal constructions or deviations coming up, they often fail in discharging their duty. Either they don't act or do not act promptly or do connive at such activities apparently for illegitimate considerations.
Thus the irregularities observed by you might have occurred.
You can make written representations in this regard giving details of the similar situation in the neighbor and seek relief on that basis.
You may not get relief but he may be taxed.
A flat may have two agreements but if it is a single inseparable unit then it has to be assessed as one unit. The yardstick is not how many agreements the flats has, it is whether the unit is a single unit as on the date of assessment.
The fact is that my flat is almost inseparable, whereas those who are charged single, their flats have two doors, and are fully separable which is tantamount to my flat being more a 'single unit' than the others. Yet the Municipal Corporation has assessed mine as two and the others as one! The question really is, Can society charges be based on the Municipal Corporation assessment, which is largely for levying their charges, I presume, or on the basis of the agreement?
Asked 6 months ago
1) society maintenance charges are based on agreement executed by builder in favour of the flat owner
2) if 2 separate agreements were made by the builder for 2 flats then society would charge you for 2 flats
The society charges on such issues are generally based on the municipal authorities assessment.
If you have grounds to project that yours is also a single or combined flat which can be considered as a single dwelling unit, you may make a representation to the authorities in this regard and request for re-assessment
You can include the neighboring similar flats as an example for the authorities to consider your plea based on their permission to the other flats.
You may wait for their decision, if not satisfied you may approach court seeking relief on what you rely upon.