Should I buy a Flat or buy Land & Construct my Home?

        Buying a house is once in a lifetime event in most of our lives. When it comes to buying a home, most of us are in dilemma whether to go for a flat or buy a land and construct our house. In this blog, I will present some of the pros and cons of a flat and an independent house which may help you to make decision based on your interests and circumstances.

Most of us dream of having own house. Many of us already have their dream house in their dream, having all the features that they wanted to have in their own house. Some want to have home with big spacious bedroom, some want to have home with big living room and some, especially ladies want to have a home with open style modern kitchen having space for all latest kitchen appliances, etc. I too had my own dreams about my own home. I wanted to have a duplex house, having staircase in living room. I wanted to have dining area which is away from living but should be able to watch the TV in living area from dining. My wife too had her own dream features about our dream home which I cannot dare to ignore. She wanted to have a big spacious kitchen with big platform having specific place for Fridge, grinder etc. Like this, each of us have our own dream home in our mind.

Buy Flat or Build Home?

In case of a flat in an apartment, there is very less freedom of choice. You have very few options to choose from. You have to select one of the two or three floor plans available that is planned as per builder's convenience which may or may not meet your requirement. You may or may not have plans as per Vaastu. In case of flat every little feature comes with extra cost. For example, a flat with a balcony or a flat facing pool or lake will be charged extra ₹ 50/- to ₹100/- per sft. Builders have very good business tricks to make more profit. All the flats in an apartment, will naturally be facing something or the other, some flats will face bunch of trees, they call it forest, some will face city trafic, they call it city view, some will face lake, they call it lake view and if some do not face anything, they will make swimming pool that side and will charge extra for each and every flat accordingly.

In case of an independent house, you are the boss, you can decide whatever you want in your dream home. You have the freedom to plan the rooms their position, size with or without Vaastu, with or without balcony etc. You will have freedom to choose the material you want to use for your dream home. If you want to use stronger bricks or cement or steel you can do so, which you cannot dare to ask in case of an apartment. You can select floor tiles or bathroom tiles of your taste. You can have Italian marbles or granites in living & dining or you can have bath tub in bathroom, which you can rarely change in case of flat, even if builder considers in some cases, it will be with huge extra cost per sft.

Other advantages of an independent house is that you can extend the house to have multiple floors as per your need and budget. For example, if you have spent more money to buy a land closer to city, you can initially construct the ground floor with required rooms as per your need, then later add more floors as your family grows or add floors for renting it out as demand for rental homes grows. In case of flat, you neither own the floor nor the roof and you may need permission if you want few changes within your own flat.

Few advantages of flat in an apartment is that, you have option to stay more closer to city. You will have better safety and security, especially for outsiders, compared to an independent house. You may get a ready to move in flat resulting in immediate savings on rent and tax savings on the home loan.

Few disadvantages of an independent house is that, you have to put exrtra time and energy with patience to construct your dream home. There is saying in Kannada "Madhuve Maadi Nodu, Mane Katti Nodu" meaning - Arrange a wedding and see, build a house and see - When worthwhile but difficult acts are done, it is gratifying in the end. Also finding or buying the plot may involve lot of time & energy. Need to have a lawyer to verify the property documents.

To conclude ,if you are looking for 5-10 years of accommodation to avoid paying rent and want to sell the house and relocate to new city, then you can go for ready flats where you get immediate rent savings and tax savings on the home loan and by the end of 5-10 year the flat may appreciate depending on the area & demand, then you can sell the flat if you want. Also If you have lot of money and no time to put extra effort and go through hassles of buying land and construct, and can afford to pay more than the worth of the flat but want to stay closer to city and can pay extra to have features like Swimming pool, gym, children play area, better security etc. then you can go for flat.

If you have a dream to have a nice home with all the features that you have dreamt of and plan to stay in that house for rest of your life, then it is best to buy a land and construct it as per your dream and you will be happy to put the time & energy to complete it.

You must be wondering what did I do in my case. Here is my story. I too wanted to buy land & construct my own house but it was not affordable for me. I wanted to buy a flat closer to city at affordable price & the possession of which is less than 4-6 months, so that I can start saving rent & tax as soon as possible. So I finalized a flat which was around 1000sft and was in my budget of ₹ 25 lakhs. I was about to book the flat but at last moment, I got to know that I will not get loan for that apartment from bank. So I dropped buying that flat. During same time, I came to know about plots in a BMRDA approved layout closer to my work place. I checked with banks and managed to get loan to buy the land. Then I changed my job to get more loan for construction as well. I started construction of house within 6 months of buying the land and completed a duplex house of 1600 sft in nine months time as per our needs. Finally, I had my own dream Home!, after putting so much of time and energy but is worth it.

Hope you enjoyed reading my blog and it will be useful for you to make better decision.

- by Chandrashekhar

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