Legal Documents Required for Buying a Flat in Kochi

March 29th, 2023


Kochi – the queen of the Arabian Sea – is famous for its natural beauty and uber-chic lifestyle. One of the fastest-growing Indian cities, it has a prominent place in the Information Technology landscape of the country, thanks to its reputed IT parks and renowned companies operating from there.

Quite naturally, the city has a high demand for housing projects. Here is a handy guide that lists out the legal documents that are required for buying a flat in Kochi. Read on to make your homebuying journey easy and hassle free.

Title Documents

Title documents in legal parlance indicate a variety of documents that show legal ownership to a property or an asset. It is of utmost importance to ensure that each of the title documents is obtained and thoroughly checked while buying a home. It would be highly advisable to consult a legal expert to check title documents.

The most important title documents are as follows. Let’s take a look at each of them with the aim of understanding them better:

Sale Deed

While buying a flat in Kochi, the most important document you need to ensure that it is thoroughly checked by a legal professional. The sale deed ascertains the transfer of ownership from seller to buyer. The document is a must to have to ensure that the property you are buying belongs to the buyer and not somebody else. This will protect you from any legal hassles in the future.

You can obtain the sale deed by visiting the sub-registrar office where the property is registered or by visiting the website of the registration department, Govt. of Kerala.

Mother Deed

Ownership of the land where your property is located might have changed many hands in the past. A mother deed helps you trace the history of the ownership. Since every relevant transfer of ownership will be marked in a mother deed, it helps you alleviate the fear of any legal entanglements in the future.

To avail the mother deed, you should visit the sub-registrar office where the property is registered. It can also be obtained online by visiting Govt. of Kerala’s registration department website.

Encumbrance Certificate

Yet another must-to-have certificate while considering purchasing a flat in Kochi, the encumbrance certificate tells whether the land on which the property you are planning to buy has any liabilities. Hence, it must be obtained to ensure that the sale of the property remains valid. An encumbrance certificate is necessary to get a bank loan, update the land tax, and of course as a an evidence for ownership title.

You can get the encumbrance certificate online easily by visiting the registration department of Kerala government.

Title Certificate

Issued by an advocate after ensuring that the title of the property you are planning to purchase has a clear marketable title. It will also contain information regarding existing mortgage, litigation, condition, or any other claim on the property.

As mentioned, an advocate issues the title certificate upon reception of the relevant documents.

Building Approvals

As the name suggests, building approvals comprise the necessary documents such as building plan approval, completion certificate, and occupancy certificate. All these together ensure that the construction is legal and hence, buying the property is safe.

Building Plan Approval

To start construction, it is mandatory to have the building plan approval. When we consider apartments in Kochi, obtaining a building plan approval is a smooth and hassle-free process. By submitting elevation, floor plan, and section drawings along with land tax receipt, copy of the original deed, and sanction drawing to the corporation, it can be obtained either offline or online.

Completion Certificate

A crucial document that guarantees that the construction of the building is complete and is ready for possession. The builder provides the completion certificate, which legalises the property. To get electricity and water connection as well as to insure the property and resell it, it is mandatory to have the completion certificate.

Occupancy Certificate

Issued by the local authority, an occupancy certificate is a very important document. It is a declaration that the property is built adhering to the construction standards, has all the necessary facilities, and has obtained the No Objection Certificate from the fire department. It’s necessary to be in possession of this certificate before moving into your flat in Kochi.

Property Tax Receipts

Property tax or building tax is the tax a property owner pays. As per your convenience, it can be either paid annually or twice a year. Any individual owning a property is liable to pay tax in India. Non-payment or delayed payment of property tax will attract penalty. Moreover, in the long run, nonpayment of property tax will cause trouble. For instance, when you want to sell your property with dues in tax payment, you would run into legal complications. Make sure that you pay the property tax on time and keep the receipts safe.

Power of Attorney Documents

Power of Attorney (PoA) is a legal document that allows one person to appoint another to act on the former’s behalf. The person who grants the PoA is the donor and the one who receives it is the attorney-in-fact. The PoA should have all the necessary information including the signature of donor, attorney details, details of powers and the reason to grant power.

The following are the documents required for registering a PoA, while buying a flat in Kochi: identification proof such as Aadhaar card, driving license, or voter ID; address proof like utility bill, or bank statement, and tax receipt, index 2 or electricity bill of the property. In addition to these, passport size photos of both the donor and attorney-in-fact are also required.

Home Loan Documents

A majority of homebuyers take home loans to fulfill their dream. When you apply for a home loan, you need to produce a wide range of documents to the bank, which would ensure that there is no delay in disbursing the loan. Here is a list of the documents that are necessary to apply for a home loan.

  • Loan application form
  • Identify proof
  • Proof of residence
  • Bank account statement or passbook for the last 6 months
  • Document that verifies the signature of the applicant by the bank
  • Liabilities statements (if any) and personal assets
  • All documents related with the property (refer the ones mentioned above)
  • Original salary certificate from employer as well as form 16 and IT returns for two years (applicable to salaried employees)
  • IT returns and copies of assessment orders for the last three years
  • Challans as proof of advance income tax payment
  • Proof of business address (all these applicable to self-employed professionals)
  • IT returns and copies of assessment orders for the last three years
  • Challans as proof of advance income tax payment (in case of self-employed business persons)
  • 3 passport-sized photographs along with the documents

Final Thoughts

All the documents mentioned above, broadly categorised under title documents, building approvals, property tax receipts, power of attorney documents, and home loan documents are mandatory for a hassle-free process of buying a flat in Kochi. Hence, it is necessary to obtain them all from the concerned bodies, as well as your builder.

Delay or failure in producing any of them as and when necessary, will result in innumerable complications that could mar your homebuying journey. Keep this guide handy so that when in doubt you can always refer to the checklist of property documents and make sure that you buy a home in Kochi with zero worries.

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