Buying a property is a momentous occasion for most first-time homebuyers, right from the moment of making the decision to buy a property, going home-hunting and then finalizing the deal. The last stage of home-buying is however very critical, unknown to many homebuyers and can become a real nightmare if you go in unprepared.

As there are many fraudulent property dealers out there, you need to do your homework right and get sufficient documentary verification about the property you are buying, to make sure that everything is clear and above-board as far as paperwork is concerned. Some property dealers over-promise on amenities and fittings which do not appear in the final product or there may be unnecessary delays in handing-over of the project, thus creating financial hardships on the homebuyer as he has to pay both for his rental property as well as EMI on home loan availed to buy the new property.

Believe it or not, these aren’t the only grouses you might have to face while buying a property as there are larger issues out there that can crop up. Of course the best thing would be to hire a good property lawyer who can handle the entire legalities of purchasing and ownership changing. There are a number of documents that need to be checked before closing a deal. These include the following:

Sale Deed – This needs to be solely in the sellers name to make him eligible for transferring to buyer’s name.

Tax receipts – You need to collect the latest tax receipts to ensure payments have been done.

Outstanding loans – Ensure that there are no outstanding loans against the land or building and collect documentary proof for it.

Encumbrance certificate – This should throw up any pending legal or monetary liabilities against the property from as far back as thirty years.
Latest electricity and water bill – This ensures you don’t inherit unnecessary bills!

Sanctioned building plan – You don’t want to be stuck with an illegal construction…

Commencement certificate – This is issued by the authorities and without it, the property becomes illegal.

No Objection Certificate (NOC) – These are required at various stages of construction and ensure everything is legal and above-board.

Purchase agreement – This is the most important document and includes all the fine writing that could get you into trouble if you don’t go through it with a magnifying glass! This should include penalties for late payments as well as ensuring that all promised amenities/features/fittings are available on ground.

Occupancy certificate – This should ensure that all water, electricity and sewage connections are in place as per the authorities provisions.

Wherever relevant, ask for the original documents and once you have confirmed all these documents, you can rest easy that the seller is genuine.