We are in the process of finalizing the rules and regulations of the Society and are stuck in the determination of maintenance charges. There are two opinions to this debate - one is to charge the maintenance on per flat basis and the other is to charge on per sq ft basis. One group is of the opinion that charging maintenance as per sq ft is illegal and should be done on per flat basis. There are counter arguments to this. Also there is a debate as to whether the open terrace area has to be taken as half for calculating the maintenance charges for the flat or it has to be taken 100% clubbed to the carpet area of the flat.
Experts need you opinion on the same, would really appreciate if some substantial legal/non legal proof can also be provided.
Whats the logic behind that since the maintenance charges which would be collected would be for the common area/utlities maintenace and it would used similarly by both 1BHK guy as well as 3BHK guy. For sure a 3 BHK guy would not use less of a lift than a 1BHK guy for eg.
The Society bye laws says that it is upto the society to decide the means of levying the maintenance charges which is decided in AGM. If thats the case then the deadlock would continue between the members and how do we break it?
Like kalpeshc said it is usually different for different sized flats - meaning 1bhk pays less compared to 2 and 3bhk owners. (The difference is generally not a huge amount either)
The only logic behind that (if any) would be that generally speaking more people live in a 3bhk apartment compared to 1bhk (we are talking families and not bachelors!), hence they end up using a bit more of the common things (lift, water supply etc)
In my apartment, its per flat basis and not based on sq feet. But I am looking to buy a flat and see that most of the big builders mention the maintenance cost per sq feet basis. So I suppose there is no specific law as to how it has to be collected. IMO, including the terrace area for the calculation is not a fair logic.
Ideally speaking it should be on per flat basis since the trend of charging maintenance on per sqft basis was started by the builders when they charge the maintenance for the first year after building completion or possession. Tese days they clearly mention the rate/sqft for maintenance in the agreement and this is becoming the basis for maintenance collection.
The debate in ouir society is there are a few terrace flats. When the agreement was signed for these flats the builder had charged terrace as 50% during the flat registration, athough the area mentioned in the agreement is carpet area + terrace(100%). Now these flat owners are arguing that the same logic should be applied for maintenance charges too. However the chairman/secretary/treasurer are of the opinion that since those terraces are exclusive to the flats and are not a part of the common area/utlities they should be charged full.
On the internet I am unable to see any examples of societies charging the terrace at half rate for maintenance. Hence the need for suggestions.