Mumbai Housing Society Queries: 'Society Can Use Sinking Fund For The Sake Of Structural Repairs,' Says Expert

Mumbai Housing Society Queries: 'Society Can Use Sinking Fund For The Sake Of Structural Repairs,' Says Expert

The questions are answered by Sharmila Ranade, a legal expert associated with Mumbai Grahak Panchayat.

FPJ News ServiceUpdated: Monday, February 12, 2024, 09:38 AM IST
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Can a society utilise the sinking fund for the major structural repair recommended by the structural auditor. It is necessary to replenish the same as our society may go in for redevelopment in the next three to four years.

VN Vijayan, Mulund

Every society has to create a sinking fund for reconstruction of its building/s or for carrying out such structural additions or alteration to the building/s necessary to strengthen the structure or for carrying out such heavy repairs as may be certified by the architect. If the structural auditor has recommended major structural repair, the society can use its sinking fund for the purpose.

The managing committee will have to get the approval of the general body to carry out the structural repair by utilising the sinking fund. The structural auditor has recommended structural repairs considering the structural stability of your building/s as it pertains to the safety of the residents.

Moreover, it is the responsibility of the managing committee to maintain the society in good repair and condition. Irrespective of the fact that the building is undergoing redevelopment in the next three to four years, the managing committee is responsible for the safety and security of the members residing in the building.

Hence if the general body approves the said expenditure, sinking fund may be utilised.

As regards replenishment of the sinking fund, Bye Law 13(c) mandates every society to collect such amounts from the members toward various funds including the sinking fund, which shall be minimum 0.25% of the construction cost of each flat incurred during the construction of the society and shall be certified by the architect, excluding the proportionate cost of the land. This fund shall be readily available to meet the purpose in the near future. If you are utilising the sinking fund, you will be required to maintain the minimum fund as stated above.

Can the society put up a bid with a minimum price offer for the open parking space for members? There are some members who do not have a single parking and may not be able to get as the highest bidder will get the parking slot. Is it possible that member/s having more than one parking can apply for parking by placing a higher bid and get two parking slots?

Sangita Sharma, Nerul

Every society has to frame and adopt the parking rules to regulate the parking slots at the general body meeting. Where parking slots are available in the open space in the society compound, the society shall number and demarcate parking slots and those may be made available to members as per the parking rules adopted by the general body. Every member desiring to have parking slot should make an application to the secretary of the society giving necessary details.

Bye Law 63 provides for procedure to dispose the application including the application for allotment of parking slots. Application of the member for allotment of parking slot are required to be placed before the managing committee after scrutiny and seeking additional information, if required. The application has to be disposed of within 3 months from the date of receipt.

The decision of the managing committee is required to be recorded in the minutes with the reason, if the application is rejected. The applicant member should be informed of the decision taken by managing committee within 15 days. Thus, calling for bids for allotting parking slots is not in accordance with the procedure mentioned in the bye laws.

Normally no member shall be eligible for being allotted more than one parking slot. Further, a member having a vehicle will only be allotted a parking slot. If any parking slots remain unallotted for want of applicants, additional parking slots may be allotted to such members who already have a slot allotted to them in normal course. Such allotment shall be on a yearly basis and may be renewed provided the same are not required by another member who has not been allotted even a single parking slot. (Bye Laws 78-84).

The government is promoting rooftop solar systems. I am staying in a rented flat. Can I avail the RTS. What if I change my residence after installing the RTS?

Suryakant Shinde, Andheri

The Government of India is providing subsidy for installation of RTS by residential consumers. You can apply online to your electricity distribution company for installation of RTS. You can install RTS under any framework like net or gross metering. If you have electricity connection in your name and you pay regular electricity bills in your own name and that your owner has permitted you to use the roof for solar rooftop installation, you can install the RTS. The Society's permission will also be required. The system is easy to be dismantled and reassembled elsewhere. So it can be shifted to your new residence.

RTS can also be installed by your society for common facilities and avail the subsidy. For more information on the installation of RTS, please visit solarrooftop.gov.in.

The questions are answered by Sharmila Ranade, a legal expert associated with Mumbai Grahak Panchayat.

The questions, in brief, may be sent to fpjchs@gmail.com

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