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The Tamil Nadu Real Estate Regulatory Authority (TNRERA) is pushing for an amendment to state rules to establish uniformity in the calculation of carpet area for flats. The primary concern revolves around whether the carpet area should encompass the space occupied by internal walls within a flat. The conflict arises from the differing definitions of carpet area in the central government’s National Building Code (NBC) and the Tamil Nadu Combined Development Building Rules (TNCDBR).

The NBC’s interpretation of carpet area includes the net usable floor area of the apartment, encompassing internal walls. Conversely, the TNCDBR computes carpet area without considering the width of internal walls. The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016, mandates that developers can sell properties based on carpet area, as defined by the NBC, which includes the area occupied by inner walls. To eliminate confusion and discrepancies, TNRERA’s chief, K Gnanadesikan, has submitted a request to the state government to harmonize the Tamil Nadu rules with the NBC’s standards.

Officials have acknowledged the existing discrepancy has resulted in significant confusion when determining the carpet area of flats. To ensure compliance with the Real Estate Act of 2016, TNRERA requires promoters to provide a area statement for all flats, which is then published on the regulatory authority’s website. However, it is challenging for the authority to independently verify whether the furnished carpet area aligns with the planning authorities’ approved plans.

Srinivas Akinipatti, Senior Director (TN and Kerala) at Knight Frank India, supports TNRERA’s initiative, stating that it will offer greater clarity on the matter. Additionally, Akinipatti emphasized that this rule adjustment is unlikely to have a significant impact on flat costs.

TNRERA has also proposed that individual flat, block, or wing numbering be included in the approved plans, with the number of required car parking spaces for individual flats specified. The Directorate of Town and Country Planning (DTCP) has been instructed to examine these demands in collaboration with the CEPT Research and Development Foundation, a consultant aiding the Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) in reviewing and strengthening the Tamil Nadu Combined Development Building Rules-2019.

Similarly, TNRERA has sought access to view approved plans from DTCP, no-objection certificates, consent letters issued by government agencies, and structural stability certificates provided by developers when seeking planning permission, along with a direct link to TNRERA for enhanced transparency.

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