Five realtors sign up as RERA enters Tamil Nadu

CHENNAI: Potential apartment buyers take note: Realty watchdog Tamil Nadu Real Estate Regulatory Authority (TNRERA) has started to stake out its territory, with five agents/firms in the state enlisting with the body and receiving their registration numbers.

The Tamil Nadu Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Rules, 2017, which the state government notified on June 22, make it mandatory for real estate agents and property dealers to register with TNRERA.

Flat buyers should check whether a property dealer is TNRERA-accredited before committing to a purchase, officials said. Also, neither party to a sale in a real estate project – both ongoing and future, that involves land exceeding 500sqm or an all-phase-inclusive eight apartments – can proceed with a deal unless the developer has registered the project with the authority.

“We have so far received more than 55 applications from agents seeking registration,” an official said. “We have issued registration numbers to five of them.”

Members of the public may view details of agents, including their names, addresses and the registration numbers on the TNRERA portal. Registration is valid for five years, and agents must periodically renew their accreditation with the authority.

TNRERA has the power to revoke registration of an agent. Individual real estate agents have to pay 25,000 as registration fee; those seeking to register as agencies pay a fee of 50,000. “All agents who offer services in purchase or sale of residential properties and housing plots must register with TNRERA,” the official said. “The authority will issue registration certificates to chosen applicants. There is no deadline for registrations as it is a continuous process.” Registration brings real estate agents under regulation of the ambitious Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016, which the Centre notified for greater transparency in what was a largely unregulated sector, and to establish an appellate tribunal to monitor and adjudicate disputes relating to building projects.

Buyers and sellers in the state can lodge complaints with TNRERA against registered agents for discrepancies. “After receiving the complaints, TNRERA will seek an explanation from the agent concerned,” another official said.

Builders Association of India, Southern Centre, Chennai, honorary secretary S Ramaprabhu said the rules will largely eliminate from the sector agents who do not deal with real estate on a full-time basis. “Real estate agents who offer services on a part-time basis may find it difficult to register with the authority because they will be on the payroll of a company,” he said.

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