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Apartment buyers denied land rights

Update: July, 26/2014 - 08:35
Apartment buildings on Ton That Thuyet Street in Ha Noi. Thousands of buyers lack land-use right certificates as the developers have not completed the necessary legal documents. — VNS Photo Thai Ha

HA NOI (VNS)  — More than 36,000 apartment buyers in Ha Noi have been denied vital land-use right certificates because the sellers have not completed legal documents, said vice director of the city's Natural Resources and Environment Department, Nguyen Huu Nghia.

Without the certificates, owners cannot legally live in their own premises.

According to the department's statistics, 112,150 finished apartments were recently handed to home buyers in the city, but only 36,110 buyers have been granted land-use right certificates.

In a new urban area north of National Highway 32 in Hoai Duc District, 551 out of 784 houses and apartments completed two years ago have been handed to home buyers, but not one has received a certificate.

A similar situation happened in the city's first affordable housing project – CT1 Ngo Thi Nham in Ha Dong District. Although 328 apartments were handed over to buyers in 2011, they have not yet received certificates.

The lack of certificates shows a gap between practice and policy as Ha Noi wants to promote affordable housing projects for low income earners. Accordingly, as soon as home buyers receive ownership certificates from housing developers, they can apply for land-use right certificates.

Vice director Nghia said that some investors refused to give buyers a "contract-completion certificate" or "value- added invoices". This prevented them from being able to complete procedures to obtain a land-use right certificate.

Former deputy minister of Natural Resources and Environment Dang Hung Vo said it was unreasonable for home buyers to be forced to bear the consequences of faults made by developers.

"Home buyers should be granted land-use right certificates as soon as they fulfill their financial obligations," he said.

Housing projects and land-use right certificates should be considered two separate processes, he said.

Previously, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the municipal People's Committee agreed that the responsibilities of sellers and buyers should be kept separate so that buyers did not have to pay for the seller's mistakes or problems.

Vice chairman of the committee, Vu Hong Khanh, said that the city would speed up the granting of land-use certificates and any violations or wrongdoings detected would be punished strictly.

People's Committees at districts were asked to work with investors of housing projects to find solutions to the problems.

The names of investors unwilling to co-operate will be reported to inspectors for further examination.

Violators will have their bank accounts frozen or be prevented from carrying out other projects in the city. — VNS

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