DLF customers gang up, pressurise developer to commit refund
29 Mar 2009, 0633 hrs IST, ET Bureau



CHENNAI: Customer pressure seemed to have got the better of India’s realty giant DLF. Nearly 300 such buyers, who have backed out of the company’s

prestigious ‘Garden City’ project in Chennai, refused to leave its premises till they got a written assurance that their money would be paid back in full.

Consequently, DLF has assured them that the formal refund letter addressed individually to the exiters would be given by April first. In its communication dated March 28, 2009, DLF Southern Homes, the special purpose vehicle executing the project on Old Mahabalipuram Road, said "the process of full refund will commence from 1st April, 2009, and will be completed before 30 September, 2009. The priority of disbursement shall be based on the order of first exit letters received and will be intimated by 10th April 2009."

For over a year and more, problems for the country’s largest listed developer have only been mounting. It has been facing the ire of customers, who made bookings in the 3,493 apartment Garden City project on 53 acres, which marked the Gurgaon-based realty biggie’s maiden entry in the city.

Apparently, the total number of exiters from the project was pegged at 580 out of its existing base of 1,800 customers. DLF Southern Homes was to have given a letter outlining the timeline of refund for all the exiters. But that did not happen, provoking angry reactions from the exiters, who refused to leave DLF premises until they got one.

The buyers, who advanced payments, have organised themselves into a Google Group, constantly monitoring the builder’s progress. Last month, as part of the attempts to appease its customers, wanting to exit from the project, DLF had brought down the prices from Rs 2500 to Rs 2600 per sq ft against Rs 2800 to Rs 3200 per sq ft for its existing customers. For new customers, the basic price was fixed at Rs 2750 per sq ft.

But this too seems to have not made any headway. For, on Saturday evening, nearly 300 buyers converged at the DLF office, seeking a written assurance from the developer to refund their money paid as advance for the project.

Earlier this month, the realty major had expressed its commitment to complete the project on schedule. This was in the wake of reports about consumers shooting exit letters.

If delayed approvals triggered anxiety and panic among existing customers, DLF Southern Homes MD K K Raman allayed the fears stating that "the construction activity is in full swing and we are well on schedule. We are committed to hand over the homes by April to June 2011, as originally committed."

"We do not foresee any problem in adhering to the timelines as we are adequately capitalised," DLF ED J Subrahmanian further said.

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  • Originally Posted by contra
    I think that DLF garden city customers in Chennai have done a big mistake by ganging up and pressurising DLF to refund, using such pressure tactics against the most reputed builder in India was a serious mistake which will cost many years for Chennai. Already when I talk to people outside Chennai like those from Delhi they are always reluctant and ask me questions like what chennai, that place, how do you manage them? ( To be frank even I was born in Tamil Nadu though brought up outside)

    Most of those who booked apartments in DLF's first residential project in Chennai were senior director level professionals in IT companies working around OMR. One would not expect such immature behaviour from such experienced people. When IT industry was going great guns in 2007 they jumped above one another and booked at DLF garden city. Now when IT is slowing down they want to exit and use immature pressure tactics.

    Bankers are noticing this bad behaviour of senior IT director level persons. Sometime in near future Bankers will be reluctant to give huge home loans (above 40 lakhs etc) to people from this industry or from this city Chennai.

    Recently People in Delhi had done the same to DLF.So from now Delhi people will not get loans from bank?Ask your Delhi people to get their facts right before commenting on others.
    CommentQuote
  • Originally Posted by contra
    I think that DLF garden city customers in Chennai have done a big mistake by ganging up and pressurising DLF to refund, using such pressure tactics against the most reputed builder in India was a serious mistake which will cost many years for Chennai. Already when I talk to people outside Chennai like those from Delhi they are always reluctant and ask me questions like what chennai, that place, how do you manage them? ( To be frank even I was born in Tamil Nadu though brought up outside)

    Most of those who booked apartments in DLF's first residential project in Chennai were senior director level professionals in IT companies working around OMR. One would not expect such immature behaviour from such experienced people. When IT industry was going great guns in 2007 they jumped above one another and booked at DLF garden city. Now when IT is slowing down they want to exit and use immature pressure tactics.

    Bankers are noticing this bad behaviour of senior IT director level persons. Sometime in near future Bankers will be reluctant to give huge home loans (above 40 lakhs etc) to people from this industry or from this city Chennai.


    Nice to know peoples perception on Chennaites.

    I have seen many people telling that Chennaites/TNadu speak/behave with commonsense and helpful.

    DLF customers grouping together against DLF's non-performance have seen fruitful results in price reduction atleast Rs 400 PSQFT.Even after the reduction ,am sure DLF would make profit.Does it mean DLF was trying to make unscrupulous profit ? Supporting DLF's non-performance would be a big mistake.

    Now people talk about more about regional chauvinism especially in Mumbai & Bangalore against the hindi-speaking people.But there was no such instances in Chennai.Does it bring down the home loan approvals arising from Mumbai & Bangalore ?

    Probably on seeing the Garden City's non-approval ---> People should have raised the premium by Rs 300 and on seeing the non-start of the foundation they should have paid additional Rs 300 ..it would have increased the chennai loan approvals from Rs 40 Lacs to Rs 100 Lacs...

    Gone were the days when 3-5 Lacs would have seen compensated in a year's increment ...things have changed ...every rupee counts ..no matter people in director/management level.
    CommentQuote
  • Originally Posted by contra
    I think that DLF garden city customers in Chennai have done a big mistake by ganging up and pressurising DLF to refund, using such pressure tactics against the most reputed builder in India was a serious mistake which will cost many years for Chennai. Already when I talk to people outside Chennai like those from Delhi they are always reluctant and ask me questions like what chennai, that place, how do you manage them? ( To be frank even I was born in Tamil Nadu though brought up outside)

    Most of those who booked apartments in DLF's first residential project in Chennai were senior director level professionals in IT companies working around OMR. One would not expect such immature behaviour from such experienced people. When IT industry was going great guns in 2007 they jumped above one another and booked at DLF garden city. Now when IT is slowing down they want to exit and use immature pressure tactics.

    Bankers are noticing this bad behaviour of senior IT director level persons. Sometime in near future Bankers will be reluctant to give huge home loans (above 40 lakhs etc) to people from this industry or from this city Chennai.

    I think this is one of the most unfair comment i have come across.

    I also studied in Delhi and know the Delhi culture very well.If DLF had tried the same trick in Delhi by now a couple of DLF staffers would have landed in hospital by now .

    I think people have a right to protest if they are being taken for a ride and even if they got unruly slightly the crowd behaviour never turned violent from what ever i could ascertain from the newpapers {which would have been a certainity in Delhi}

    Regarding banks giving out loan they look at the customer's repayment capacity before disbursing loan and no other criteria matters to them.They will give loans even to a murderer as long as their money is secure.

    Rgds
    CommentQuote
  • Originally Posted by contra
    I think that DLF garden city customers in Chennai have done a big mistake by ganging up and pressurising DLF to refund, using such pressure tactics against the most reputed builder in India was a serious mistake which will cost many years for Chennai. Already when I talk to people outside Chennai like those from Delhi they are always reluctant and ask me questions like what chennai, that place, how do you manage them? ( To be frank even I was born in Tamil Nadu though brought up outside)

    Most of those who booked apartments in DLF's first residential project in Chennai were senior director level professionals in IT companies working around OMR. One would not expect such immature behaviour from such experienced people. When IT industry was going great guns in 2007 they jumped above one another and booked at DLF garden city. Now when IT is slowing down they want to exit and use immature pressure tactics.

    Bankers are noticing this bad behaviour of senior IT director level persons. Sometime in near future Bankers will be reluctant to give huge home loans (above 40 lakhs etc) to people from this industry or from this city Chennai.

    What is wrong if the Delhi cheat by the name DLF is asked to take a retreat in Chennai? I think Chennaites have more sense not to be conned by crooks like DLF and who cares what some idiot in Delhi thinks?
    CommentQuote