NEW DELHI, June 10: The Delhi government's decision to grant licences to the property dealers and make their registration compulsory promises to regulate the much-maligned profession and infuse some credibility in it.
The lower and middle rung of the trade is full of people with dubious credentials who pass off as estate agents or property dealers. There have been hundreds of cases wherein such dealers palmed off a non-existent property to the unsuspecting buyer or sold the same property several times over by misusing the power of attorney instrument.
Currently, just about anyone can start operating as an estate agent by opening a makeshift office. A majority of such professionals have little or no knowledge of the property related laws and other encumbrances involved in a property deal.
``The licencing will, hopefully, weed out all such characters from the market, making it a much respectable profession,'' says Anil Makhijani of the Mak Realtors in south Delhi.
The government is proposing to impose certain conditions for those who want to pursue the trade. To begin with, the candidates should be at least higher secondary pass, residents of Delhi, income tax payees and have undergone a course to get well versed with the property related laws. The government will introduce a legislation in the assembly to ensure that the rules made for the dealers are made binding on them.
Suresh Chopra, a dealer attached with the Capital's estate dealers' association avers that those interested in making a living from the profession and establishing a goodwill, in any case, do avoid all dubious deals but the professionalism seen in their counterparts in the western countries ``is definitely missing.'' The next step, he suggests, should be to introduce a specialised course in realting to overcome that drawback as well.
The levy of a one time fee of Rs 10,000 might, however, come in for criticism by a section if the dealers. ``A large number of dealers operate on a very small scale, brokering the rental deals or the janta properties in the lowermost rung of the real estate market. They may neither be the income tax payees and nor be able to pay such a heavy amount in registration fee,'' Makhijani added.
The Deputy Commissioners of all the nine zones will be entrusted the task of registering the property dealers.
Copyright © 1998 Indian Express Newspapers (Bombay) Ltd.