InvestmentReal Estate

What Is An Occupancy Certificate: All You Must Know Before Buying a New House

Purchasing a home is the biggest decision of an individual’s life. Hence, the buyer must weigh and analyze every aspect of the purchase, before actually making the final deal and moving-in. One of the most important aspects is obtaining an occupancy certificate.

What Is An Occupancy Certificate?

An occupancy certificate or completion certificate is an important document to be obtained before residing in a new flat or apartment. It certifies that the building is completed and constructed in line with the approved legal plan. So, if the builder is denying from providing you the occupancy certificate, clearly understand that the building does not obey the approved guidelines, regulations and building codes. Please be noted that this type of certificate is not given to a specific single unit, but to a complete building.

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Why It Is Important For a Home Owner?

An occupancy certificate is not just a document to confirm the adherence of the property to laws and regulations, it is rather a major catalyst that serves you in the following situations –

  • When applying for sanitation, electricity and water connections at home.
  • When applying for a home loan.
  • When selling your property.
  • When purchasing a resale property.

In all of these situations (and more), you need access to a valid OC. Apart from these, an occupancy certificate confirms the legal status of the property.

In case, you obtain an occupancy certificate and start living in the home/property, the local municipal body will take legal action against the builder and may seize the building on the grounds of unauthorized structure. In such a case, your home insurance would also not work, as a home insurance policy covers you against unforeseen mishaps and not against something which is illegal.

How To Obtain An Occupancy Certificate?

You need not to worry about the occupancy certificate, as it is the responsibility of the builder to apply for an OC, within a duration of 30 days after the project has been completed. However, you too can apply for this certificate from the local municipality or corporation.

The important documents that you may need to submit along with your application are –

  • NOC for pollution and fire
  • Certificate of Project commencement
  • Certificate of Project completion
  • Property’s sanctioned plan
  • Property tax receipt

Your property is eligible to obtain the occupancy certificate, only if it sails through a series of inspections, viz. plumbing inspection, fire safety inspection, and other general inspections. In case, the property fails the inspections, you will be given a certain period of time (generally around 60 days) to make your property conform to the safety regulations and building codes.

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An occupancy certificate is very important for every home owner. Although you may not face any issue in the very beginning, yet at a later stage, you will surely repent over not obtaining an OC. It is better to be aware today than being sorry tomorrow. So, purchase a home, get a home insurance and live peacefully with an occupancy certificate.

Vikas Agarwal
the authorVikas Agarwal
Vikas Agarwal is an IIT-Varanasi graduate in Chemical Engineering. He is the Founder and CEO of - an investment advisory website. He is a Business Development Professional but a Value Investor at heart. He writes articles on Finaacle, which focus on simplifying the art of investing and the causes of human misjudgment when it comes to investing. He also shares his experiences as an investor and lessons from some of the greatest investors of all time.

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