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March 16, 2023

Builders have to submit structural audit reports for OC from April 1 in Noida


The Noida Authority's structural audit policy will go into effect on April 1, making it mandatory for developers to seek occupancy certificates for new or delayed projects after having their buildings structurally vetted by an institute accredited by the Noida Authority and creating a framework for homebuyers to seek quick redress on complaints about structural defects in existing buildings.

"Starting April 1, the structural audit report obtained from one of the empanelled agencies will be mandatory with the online application for partial or full OC," said senior manager (planning) Devendra Nigam. The developer will receive the OC if the towers and society are safe from all angles."

Officials stated that if at least 25% of a building's occupants support an audit, the Authority can be approached immediately. A committee led by another CEO-level officer would then investigate their complaint and determine whether the flaw is minor or major. For a major defect, depending on the time since the issuance of the OC, the developer or the AOA will be responsible for engaging an agency for a structural audit and repair.

"After getting the OC, the builder will be responsible for structural audits for the next five years and rectifying the deficiencies found in the structural audits during this period. After five years, it will be the AOA's responsibility," Nigam explained.

The Noida Authority has appointed seven reputable institutes to conduct structural audits: IIT Kanpur, Aligarh Muslim University, BITS Pilani, Delhi Technical University, Motilal Nehru National Institute of Technology in Allahabad, Malaviya National Institute of Technology in Jaipur, and Central Building Research Institute in Roorkee. Officials stated that the developer or AOA must select an auditor from among them, and that the audit fee would be mutually determined by the developer or AOA and the institute engaged.

"If 25% or more buyers complain about a defect, the committee would investigate the complaint," Nigam explained. If the committee determines that the complaint is about minor flaws, the Authority will send a notice to the developer or AOA, whoever is in charge, to resolve the complaint within three months. If the committee determines that the complaint involves major flaws, a structural audit is required, which should take place within a month. The developer or AOA will then address the complaint."

He also stated that if the developer fails to complete the audit within the time frame specified, the Authority will hire a consultant to complete the audit and add the cost to its liability. In the case of the AOA, the amount will be recovered from the management board via a recovery certificate.

"If the structural audit report reveals that a building needs several repairs and retrofitting, the developer or AOA will have to start work at the site in a month and complete the same in six months.”On a case-by-case basis, the committee may extend this period," Nigam explained. "If the AOA or developer does not begin work, the Authority will act in accordance with the provisions of the Industrial Area."

Manoj Gaur, president of CREDAI (NCR) and CMD of Gaurs Group, welcomed the appointment of reputable technical institutes to conduct building structural audits. "Institutions are already conducting structural audits on all CREDAI registered developers.”However, this move will increase buyer confidence by bringing clarity and transparency to the process," Gaur said.

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