What Can You Do When Builder Delays Possession of Property?

When a builder delays the possession of a property, it can be frustrating and inconvenient for the buyer. Here are some steps you can take if you find yourself in this situation:

Review the agreement: Carefully go through the agreement you signed with the builder. Pay attention to the clauses related to possession dates, penalties for delays, and dispute resolution mechanisms. Understanding your rights and obligations will help you navigate the situation better.

Communicate with the builder: Reach out to the builder or their representative to inquire about the delay and seek clarification. Document all your communication, whether it’s through emails, letters, or registered mail, to have a record of your attempts to resolve the issue.

Check for legal recourse: Consult with a lawyer specializing in real estate or property law to understand the legal options available to you. They can provide guidance on your rights, help you assess the builder’s obligations, and suggest the best course of action.

Invoke penalty clauses: If your agreement includes penalty clauses for delays, remind the builder of their contractual obligations and request compensation as per the agreed terms. This may incentivize them to expedite the possession or compensate you for the inconvenience caused.


Engage with the builder’s association or regulatory bodies: Depending on your country or locality, there might be builder’s associations or regulatory bodies that oversee construction projects. Lodge a complaint with the relevant authority, providing all supporting documentation, and request their intervention to resolve the delay.

Seek alternative solutions: If the delay is significant and you’re facing inconvenience, explore alternative solutions. You could negotiate with the builder for temporary accommodation or seek reimbursement for rent if you’re already paying for alternative housing due to the delay.

Consider mediation or arbitration: If you and the builder are unable to reach a resolution through direct negotiation, you can explore mediation or arbitration as alternative dispute resolution methods. These processes involve an impartial third party who can help facilitate a mutually acceptable agreement.

Keep records: Maintain a detailed record of all the documents, correspondences, and interactions related to the property purchase and the delay. These records will be useful for any legal proceedings or negotiations in the future.

Remember, each situation is unique, and the actions you take will depend on the specific circumstances and the laws in your jurisdiction. Consulting with legal professionals and LuXia experts in matters will provide you with the most accurate guidance tailored to your situation.

What should be the duration of delay in possession?

Compensation can be granted even when there is a delay of one day.

Choice of remedy: The buyer can choose:

  • At the first instance, send a legal notice. If the builder does not respond, an appropriate remedy can be availed.
  • If a Regulatory Authority is set up in a state by the Government under RERA, a buyer cannot seek remedy in a civil court in that area.
  • If no Regulatory Authority under RERA has been set up by the Government for a State, the buyer can approach civil court.
  • A buyer can also approach consumer forum for redressal of his grievance as he is a consumer and services provided by buyer are deficient.
  • A criminal complaint can be filed depending upon the facts of the case. In a criminal complaint, the builder is punished if found guilty, but the grant of compensation is the discretion of the court.

Generally speaking, it is against the law to use more than one remedy at once. A buyer may contact both the RERA and the consumer forum, but he must decide which to use. As RERA is a specific statute created for the protection of home buyers, one may withdraw their case from the Consumer Forum and file it there instead.

The Consumer Forum and RERA also have the power to penalise and grant compensation. RERA has the power to impose harsher punishment.