Checking the quality of construction: a perspective for homebuyers in Hyderabad, India!
As home buyers, we want to book a home with high-quality construction. Builders across India have been quick to adopt newer technologies, better designs, and a lot of improvements in the construction process. As home buyers, we need to know if our builder is using them, especially, in the smaller ‘standalone building apartment’ segment.
However, we still find some home buyers complaining of poor construction, cracks developing in the walls, or poor interior or exterior. So, we don’t want to be complaining about construction and workmanship quality after having spent our hard-earned money to buy an apartment. Three things make up the quality of construction: 1) DESIGN specs., 2) MATERIALS used, and 3) the Actual CONSTRUCTION process!
1. Why is construction quality important in the affordable segment of homes in India?
- Let us understand this with an example specific to Hyderabad, India. Quality of construction becomes all the more important in the ‘standalone building’ affordable segment.
- If you are buying an apartment in a standalone building in the Sainikpuri area in Hyderabad, you will find rates between Rs 4000 to Rs 7000 per sft. We have been particularly careful of the lower-end apartments.
- The reason is simple- builders operating in this segment sometimes go sub-standard on the quality of construction. Why? To match our pricing expectations of the price-sensitive customers. The builders sometimes cut corners on quality to bring down the prices.
- So, the home buyers need to know what is being compromised! You can compromise on low-end specifications of interiors, but there can NOT be any compromise on the STRUCTURE of the building!
2. Looking deeper into the quality of construction: a list of self-checks
All the defects in the constructions are not always visible. For instance, a laborer or a customer would not be able to find out the strength of the structure unless the structural plan is been reviewed independently by professionals like architects or structural Engineers. Here are a few self-checks which can be done on your own
A. Sound paperwork
- All the builders promise ‘quality construction’ but many don’t provide the details
- “It is important that the builder annexes with the booking agreement, a detailed specification and type of material used for flooring, doors, windows, sanitary/electrical fittings, etc.
- This helps us know what the developer is committing.
- However, most of the builders don’t comply with using the type and quality of material mentioned in the agreement.
- However, putting all the details in the agreement adds up pressure on the builder to deliver quality construction.
B. Meeting standards
Frequent site visits without intimating the builder will help in understanding the quality of construction.
- Soil Investigation:
It’s very important to check the soil on which a building is built.
- The quality of the soil differs from place to place depending on its composition.
Asking for a soil test report would add up to getting to know about the soil composition and strength.
C. Structural Design:
- It is difficult for a common person to understand the layout blueprints and the design. So, it is better to ask about the design created by the project’s architect and review it with a third-party architect.
- The structure should provide enough strength to withstand earthquakes of a certain magnitude. The strength of the building depends on the steel used in the structure.
D. Concrete Mix
- The load of the structure is based on the concrete strength. The concrete mix should be monitored regularly on the site but in real-time it is not possible for the builder to always monitor the quality of the concrete mix.
- As a solution for this many of them use ready mix concrete. Therefore the builder has to test the concrete mix in the laboratory. It’s always helpful to ask the builder about the testing report.
E. Wall Thickness:
- The wall thickness is always mentioned in the architectural plan. Make sure these details are provided in the booking agreement.
- Visiting the site various times at the time of construction would help in knowing if the thickness is maintained according to the original plan mentioned in the agreement.
- Developers promise quality for certain fixtures and furnishings but the bathroom fittings, electrical wiring, etc. must always be checked again if they are certified by the Bureau of Indian Standards.
- Once the finishing is done the quality of tiles, plaster, paints, and marble should be visible to the naked eye.
- Ask the builder if you find any doubt in the quality as the poor quality always leads to early replacement.
H. Third-party certifications
- As the independent audit could be expensive one can ask the builder to hire a third-party audit agency to continuously do the quality certifications and audits for his ventures, which will not cost you anything.
- Whether you do it yourself or seek third-party help, be alert about the quality of the construction for your property.
“Quality is never an accident; it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives.”– William A. Foster
To know more about “Tips To Check Construction Quality Of An Apartment In A ‘Standalone Building’ In Hyderabad!” Click here!