7 things homebuyers in Maharashtra must look for in their real estate agent
Approximately 10 percent of real estate agents in Maharashtra have appeared for the MahaRERA competency exams at the expiry of the deadline. Homebuyers must look for agents who comply with the rules of MahaRERA.
The MahaRERA has made it mandatory for all real estate agents to register with the regulatory authority since May 2017.
The Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) became the first real estate regulatory authority in the country to mandate an online examination for over 44,800 registered real estate agents in the state to obtain a MahaRERA Real Estate Agent Certificate of Competency. Previously, new agents and those who want to renew their registration were expected to get themselves certified in May and September respectively. The housing regulator MahaRERA has extended the deadline for real estate agents in Mumbai to obtain a certificate of competency. The new deadline is November 1, 2023, for new agents and January 1, 2024, for existing agents.
The competency exam clearance by MahaRERA means that the particular real estate agent is certified real estate agent where they are asked several questions in the written examination about consumer rights, RERA Act, and other knowledge of the real estate sector.
Meanwhile, homebuyers looking to invest in real estate, should keep in mind the following things while choosing a real estate agent.
- Check MahaRERA registration:
The MahaRERA has made it mandatory for all real estate agents to register with the regulatory authority since May 2017. The MahaRERA has also mandated that real estate agents must display their RERA registration number and QR code on all promotional activities being carried out by them.
- Check if the agent has appeared for competency examination:
The MahaRERA had in January 2023, mandated that all registered real estate agents should appear for a competency examination by September 01, 2023 which is now extended until January 1, 2024. As mentioned earlier, only around 10 percent of the agents have appeared for and cleared the same.
Hence, homebuyers should check if the real estate agent they are dealing with has cleared the competency examination or not.
The MahaRERA will issue a certificate to every real estate agent that clears the exam, and homebuyers can ask the agents to furnish this certificate.
- Check if agent has progress reports on projects
With an aim to increase transparency, the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA), in an order issued on 13 February 2023 directed real estate agents to make half-yearly progress reports public from financial years 2023-24. In the progress report, MahaRERA had mandated that real estate agents will have to furnish information on developer projects they are representing, and other details, including transactions made in a particular real estate project, excluding the individual financial gains.
The real estate agents were asked to upload all these details on their respective web pages. Hence, homebuyers should check if the real estate agents they are dealing with are complying with the above regulations of MahaRERA.
- Check if the developer has uploaded details of the registered real estate agent
Homebuyers should keep in mind that all real estate developers are mandated to deal only with real estate agents that are registered and compliant with MahaRERA regulations.
The developers are also expected to upload details of real estate agents they intend to deal with in particular projects on the MahaRERA web-page. Hence, homebuyers can find the names and details of real estate agents that are MahaRERA compliant, on these web-pages.
Homebuyers should cross verify all the details given by real estate agents about a particular project with the MahaRERA web-page and the developers before investing in a particular project. Several details such as the carpet area, project completion date, amenities, litigation if any, permission status should be available on the MahaRERA portal along with details of the developer.
- Expertise in local market
When you narrate your requirements to your real estate agent, he should be able to suggest a number of options. “The inventory the real estate agent possesses is very important.” Try to assess whether the real estate agent has good knowledge of the prices prevailing in the area you are interested in, and is able to provide the pros and cons of various projects. “The location of one project might be good, but its developer’s track record may not be sound. The real estate agent should be able to guide you on these counts.”
Check if the real estate agent is a member of NAR-INDIA or other similar local Real Estate Agents Association and adds value to brokers’ professional affiliations and membership.
Conclusion Additionally, consider your personal rapport with the real estate agent. Building a good working relationship and feeling comfortable with your agent is important, as buying a home is a significant financial and emotional decision. Take the time to interview multiple agents and choose the one who best meets your needs and aligns with your goals.