CREDAI sign code of conduct for transperency
Delays in possession of house, failure to meet commitments, additional demand of money over agreed value and ambiguity over sold areas are some of the common complaints against builders.
“The primary concern of the consumer is transparency and accountability. Many middle class customers carry the perception that the developers are not answerable and that the only recourse is litigation which is a long drawn and messy process,” said Pankaj Bajaj, President, Confederation of Real Estate Developers Associations of India – National Capital Region (CREDAI NCR).
CREDAI, being the apex body of real estate developers in the country with over 8000 members, is now banking on peer pressure amongst its members to resolve consumer complaints. All its members have signed a code of conduct which is a self governing mechanism requiring them to adhere with prescribed levels of transparency with their customers. Apart from committing to being transparent with the customers on area calculations, approvals status and specifications, the code of conduct requires the developer to declare upfront the compensation in case he delays in delivering the project within the committed timeframe. According to Bajaj, the idea behind the code is to differentiate clean developers from fly by night operators in a sector which has been maligned for its opaqueness.
To give teeth to the code of conduct, CREDAI has simultaneously launched a consumer grievance redressal forum where any member of the buying public can lodge a complaint against a CREDAI member. “We realized that self governance and peer pressure are powerful tools. We have been running a pilot project of this exercise and found that 90 per cent of the complaints against developers got resolved due to the peer pressure from the CREDAI forum on the concerned developer,” said Bajaj. The Forum has a panel of experienced developers and legal experts who decide on the complaint.
“Complaints can be lodged on the CREDAI NCR website. CREDAI NCR is also embarking on an advertisement campaign- “Is your developer CREDAI accredited?” – to raise awareness about this initiative. Hopefully, this programme will succeed in aligning the faith of the consumers with the intent of fair and transparent developers. We also hope that as a result of this, the market is going to start discounting non transparent developers where there is no redressal forum for complaints,” added Mr Bajaj.