Jul 18, 2022

What is an Occupancy Certificate - Importance and Benefits?

Owning a home takes years of saving, studying, and paperwork. You gain ownership of your apartment after patiently waiting for the building to be finished before registering the property. What happens if the government declares your ideal house illegal and orders you to leave? It may sound unbelievable, but it's not. If the Occupancy Certificate, a necessary step in selling the property, is missing, this nightmare could become a reality (OC).

Numerous Indian cities have a majority of apartment buildings occupied by owners who lack an occupancy certificate. Numerous flats have been occupied without Occupancy Certificates in cities like Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Delhi. The legal standing of your dream home may be at risk due to this carelessness, which could prove to be expensive. The building plans for these flats have been approved in many instances, but they frequently do not receive OCs because they do not follow the approved building plan or because of other infractions. The significance of the occupancy certificate, which certifies your property's legal status and safeguards your ownership rights, cannot be understated.

Before you decide to move forward with buying your dream house, let's delve a little more into the specifics of these agreements and their significance.

What is an Occupancy Certificate?

An occupancy certificate is a document that attests to a building's compliance with national building rules and its suitability for habitation.  A development authority or a local government agency, such as the municipal corporation, issues it.

An Occupancy Certificate is a document that the relevant civic body issues to attest to the following:

  • Buildings are constructed in accordance with approved plans and bylaws.
  • It complies with building regulations.
  • Every essential amenity is available.
  • The fire No Objection Certificate (NOC) and all other necessary approvals are in place.

It is crucial for house buyers to confirm that the certificate of occupancy and other required paperwork and certifications are in order. Keep in mind that if any required document or approval is missing, civic authorities have the right to evict inhabitants.

Who issues the occupancy certificate?

A competent certifying authority issues an OC, in accordance with civic rules, allowing occupation of any building. These are typically municipal companies or similar local civic organizations.

Whose responsibility is it to obtain the OC?

It is the builder's duty to obtain the OC from the appropriate authorities and make it available to the prospective buyers of real estate.

Importance of Occupancy Certificate

The certificate serves as evidence that the structure is secure and suitable for habitation. A certificate of this kind is especially necessary when the concerned parties request electricity, water, and sanitation connections from regional municipal organizations.

  • Obtaining an occupancy permit is crucial since the purchaser cannot legally occupy the apartment or building until the developer has done so.
  • The occupancy certificate must also be presented to the lender if you apply for a mortgage.
  • One of the most crucial documents you will need when selling the home is this certificate.
  • While applying for a water supply, sewage connection, or electricity, a building occupancy certificate is essential.
  • While applying for a mortgage loan, an OC is a required document.
  • This document enables people to obtain a certified copy of the deed.

Getting an Occupancy Certificate: The Steps to Obtain Occupancy Certificate

Once the building's construction is complete, the local government issues the occupancy certificate upon receipt of the application. The Occupancy Certificate is typically issued by the neighborhood municipal body 30 days after the application date. The list of the required paperwork for an occupancy certificate application is provided below:

  • Commencement Certificate.
  • Completion Certificate.
  • No Objection Certificate (NOC) for fire and pollution.
  • Built and section plan.
  • The latest tax paid receipt with the tax assessment.
  • Pictures of the completed project.
  • Photographs of solar panels and rain harvesting.
  • Copy of the sanctioned plan.
  • Calculation sheet of the floor area duly signed by an architect

OCs are issued after authorities inspect the complex and confirm that it conforms to the approved plan. The builder should apply for the OC to the municipal commissioner within thirty days of the property's completion, legally and ideally.

How you can apply for an OC?

If all necessary approvals are in place, a flat owner may also apply for an OC by contacting their local municipality or corporation. If so, the OC will be granted within 30 days of the application. To obtain an OC, you must submit the same paperwork as the builder did.

Occupancy Certificate (OC) V/S Completion Certificate (CC)

Occupancy Certificate (OC) Completion Certificate (CC)
A legal document is known as an "occupation certificate" attests to the fact that a building's construction followed the approved plan and is now suitable for occupancy. A Completion Certificate is a legal document attesting to the property's completion and that it complies with all governmental rules and regulations.
Only after receiving the Occupancy Certificate does the owner have the legal right to occupy the apartment or home. The owner of the apartment/house is not necessarily entitled to occupy and possess it legally just because they have a completion certificate.


Should you purchase a flat without an OC?

If there is no legal OC, the local municipal government may take harsh action against the owners of apartments. You experience the following consequences if you purchase a flat without receiving the OC from the developer:

  • Your building may be razed if it doesn't have a valid OC since it may be considered an unauthorized structure.
  • When requesting a loan to buy a property or a resale apartment, the OC is essential. You will be unable to do so without a current OC if you want to sell or hypothecate the property after some time has passed.
  • In the absence of an OC, the water, sanitary, or electrical connections can be cut off.

Always make sure you get both the OC and CC before purchasing a property. The buyer-seller contract will specify what happens next if the developer is unable to offer OC or CC. You may even request to be charged rent during the developer's delay in making OC/CC available. Always available is the option to complain to the appropriate authority.

The transparency and responsibility of the builders have, however, been ensured after the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016, was passed.

In a nutshell, it's always a good idea to double-check that the necessary authorizations and critical paperwork are in place. Avoidance is preferable to cure.

At Transcon, we issue Occupancy Certificates and Completion Certificates on both residential and commercial projects in mumbai. Contact us now if you are looking for a luxurious flat with top-notch amenities. Our team members will get in touch with you.