Is muncipal permission needed to do renovation in old building?


Owing to the high real estate prices in Mumbai, home owners are often forced to remodel their existing homes to create additional space, instead of buying a bigger house. Now under the governmentÕs policy of improving ease of doing business, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is planning a proposal in the Development Control Rules (DCR), which will allow residents to make changes in their homes, without their permission.

The civic body will not take any action, if the beams and load-bearing walls on which the structure stands, are not modified. ÒChanges can be made, without touching the foundation of the building. However, any interior repair work that may harm the buildingÕs structure, will not be allowed,Ó informed Rajesh Dholay, executive engineer, BMC.

For renovations, residents should consult an architect. Alternatively, housing societies could hire a professional architect, to keep the members from misusing these provisions. Pavan Nishad, a structural engineer, advises: ÒFor any kind of changes in the buildingÕs structure, a proper survey should be done in advance. Individuals and societies should now engage the services of qualified professionals, to undertake flat renovations.Ó

What is permitted?
Providing guniting to the structural members or walls.
Plastering, painting and pointing.
Changing floor tiles.
Repairing WC, bath or washing spaces.
Repairing or replacing drainage pipes, taps, manholes and other fittings.
Repairing or replacing sanitary, water plumbing or electrical fittings.
Replacement of roof with the same material.
Replacing the existing water-proofing treatment, without increasing the dead load.
ÔTenantable repairsÕ however, shall not include:

Change in the existing horizontal and vertical dimensions of the structure.
Replacing or removal of any structural members of load bearing walls.
Lowering of plinth, foundations or floors.
Addition or extension of mezzanine floor or loft.
Flattening of roof or repairing roof with different materials.

Reference: section 342 of BMC Act, 1988



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