All You Need To Know About Floor Area Ratio
Floor Area Ratio (FAR) is one of the most frequently used term in real estate. But, do you know what does it mean? Floor Area Ratio (FAR) is the ratio of the floor area in a building to the area of the plot on which it stands. For example, if a 2,000 square foot (sq ft) building stands on a 1,000 sq ft plot, the floor area ratio is 2. If a 3,000 sq ft building stands on a 1,000 sq ft plot, the floor area is 3, and so on.
Why is FAR important?
FAR is an indication of how much a developer can build on a given plot of land. For example, if a development authority permits a higher FAR, it will result into a dense construction. A lower FAR helps keep check on the density of population dwelling in the area as well. Given these intricacies and how cities may shape up, the development authority is in charge of setting a FAR for every region. Even within a city, FAR may differ.
Given the scarcity of land, there is a tendency or inkling towards building more. However, haphazard construction may not be good for the health of a structure which is exactly why FAR is a mandate in all Indian cities and developers cannot construct flouting these rules.
Push for higher FAR
You may have also heard developers asking for a higher FAR. In some areas, building an additional floor at a later stage would also cost you more. How? Take for example Gurgaon. The Chief Minister recently gave his green signal for registration of the fourth floor as an independent dwelling unit in licensed plotted developments but this also calls for additional FAR that needs to be purchased. This additional amount would then be used by the Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon to develop the infrastructure in the area.
How does FAR impact prices?
Does building more allow the developer to sell for a lower price? Not necessarily because real estate developers have to take care of much more than simply selling more at what appears to be ‘corrected’ prices. Only if the density norms change with the change or increase in FAR can a developer make use of the change for the price advantage of a homebuyer. In various places, there are height restrictions as well and therefore even if a developer wants, building norms do not allow him to build more. Violating these norms is not advisable given the safety angle of the structure as well as the residents.
Highest FAR in India
Kerala boasts the highest permissible FAR among Indian cities. The Local Self Government (LSG) department introduced a set of amendments early this year to the Kerala Municipality Building Rules (KMBR) and the Panchayat. It called for a uniform FAR across the state. In 2013, residential buildings were granted an FAR of four and this year, it has been extended to commercial buildings as well including hospitals, offices, businesses, small industrial and storage places as well.
In most other Indian cities, FAR varies between 1.5 and 2.5 and depends upon types of projects.