About | Importance | Procurement | Difference | Offers Cover | If Not Received | Check Status | Partial OC | Conclusion | FAQs

So, you have gifted yourself a new home, and we understand the joy and excitement it brings us along with the entire family. A self-owned home is a much-awaited thing in our life, and it involves lots of emotions, sacrifice and commitment towards ourselves and the family.

We understand you plan to have a grand ‘Gruh Pravesh’ or ‘Ganesh Pujan” before occupying the new home. But wait, there’s one more thing you should be sure of before taking possession of your home.

What is it? 

You guessed it right! It’s the Occupany Certificate, called O.C. in general terms while speaking.

When it comes to your home, the occupancy certificate plays a crucial role in apparently legalising your property.

You might need to verify all the documents the developer or the builder submits to you before you sign the possession papers, sending an indication about “all ok” from your side.

If you have purchased your home by financing through a bank, you may not have to worry, as the bank will sanction the loan only after verifying the validity of the required documents. But still, it’s a great habit to check it with your own eyes before going forward.

Let’s dive in to understand all the above topics in detail.

What Is An Occupancy Certificate?

occupancy certificate
Source: Scott Graham / Unsplash

An occupancy certificate is a document certified by a local municipal corporation that mentions the building construction complies with the proposed plans, laws and guidelines laid down by the authorities. 

In addition, it also certifies that the building is in a suitable condition for occupancy, which means it is ready for the flat owners to take possession of their respective flats and start living there.

Importance Of Occupancy Certificate

Here are some points that point us towards the importance of O.C.

  1. Unless and until you procure an O.C., you as a homeowner cannot guarantee the legal status of your home.
  2. An O.C. is a mandatory requirement to apply for water supply, electricity and sanitation connections.
  3. Without O.C., you can neither mortgage your home nor sell it. If you start living in your home without a valid O.C., it might lead to a legal action raised by the local municipal corporation.
  4. Without a valid O.C., the municipal corporation may label it an unauthorised construction.
  5. An occupancy certificate can benefit you with income tax savings if you have obtained a home loan.
  6. Another crucial document which seals the security of your building is the conveyance deed. You can procure it only if you have the O.C.
  7. The property tax won’t be applicable unless an O.C. is acquired.

Let us now find the method to procure an occupancy certificate.

How To Procure An Occupancy Certificate?

You will need to submit the following documents to obtain an O.C.

  • Certificate of Project Commencement
  • Completion Certificate (CC)
  • No Objection Certificate from Fire and Pollution Departments
  • Building plan and Sanction plan
  • A copy of the area calculation sheet of floor signed by the authorised architect
  • Photograph of the completed building
  • The building’s sanctioned plan copy
  • Photographic evidence of rain harvesting and solar panel
  • Latest property tax receipt with tax assessment

Timelines for O.C.

Once the construction of the building is complete, the developer should apply for O.C. within 30 days. Being a homeowner, you are also eligible to apply for O.C. from the local municipal corporation.

If all the essential benchmarks are up to the mark, you will receive your O.C. within 30 working days from the date of your application.

How Does It Differ From Completion And Possession Certificates?

It is an observation that there’s confusion between buyers assuming occupancy certificates with completion and possession certificates.

The following table will help you to understand the differences between these documents.

Completion CertificatePossession CertificateOccupancy Certificate
The concerned authority issues this to certify that the construction project is complete and complying with the safety norms and building guidelines.
This certificate is required to obtain the O.C.
The builder or developer issues this certificate, mentioning a change in ownership of the said building. This certificate doesn’t prove the buyer as the owner of the property.
This certificate is issued after the concerned authority provides a completion certificate to the builder.
The O.C. certificate proves that the construction of the building is according to the approved plans and by following the rules and regulations laid by the concerned authority.
To acquire this certificate, you should submit the completion certificate acquired earlier.

Can The Occupancy Certificate Provide A Protective Cover To Homebuyers?

Protective cover
Source: Mike B / Pexels

The occupancy certificate is a safe guarantee of the legality of your building and can save you from various hassles. You will get an appreciative return on your home if you wish to resale before moving out to new premises. 

Any financial institution will be ready to provide a loan against your flat with a valid O.C. whenever the need arises.

In addition, an occupancy certificate is a sure-way ticket to obtain the conveyance deed, with which your building society proclaims the ownership of the land on which the building stands.

What If You Don’t Receive O.C. From The Builder/Developer?

There may be instances when the developer will deny providing an O.C. or just ignores obtaining the O.C., despite the completed status of the building.

In such cases, you can initiate legal action against them. You can notify him via a legal notice requesting him to provide the occupancy certificate. You can even take the help of the consumer court. 

Though RERA is controlling most of the frauds in the real estate sector, you should keep alert at all times beforehand to avoid disputes at a later stage, as these procedures eat a lot of your time, money and energy.

How Can You Check The Occupancy Certificate Status?

You can check the status of your O.C. online, provided the developer registers the concerned project with RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Authority), 2016. As per the terms of RERA, for any project registered with them, the builder should update the progress of the concerned construction in RERA’s portal regularly.

If you notice mismatched or missing information, raise a complaint to the local authorities and RERA.

Situations when the authority denies providing an Occupancy Certificate

There may be instances when the concerned authority refuses to provide O.C. Let’s understand those reasons.

  1. In an event when fire and pollution authorities haven’t provided their NOCs.
  2. When the developer fails to submit the commencement or completion certificate.
  3. When the property tax remains unpaid by the developer.
  4. The construction doesn’t follow the compliance set or is not according to the approved plans.

Partial Occupancy Certificate

This certificate can be obtained when the construction is happening in a phased manner. Once a phase is complete and if all the criteria meet for safe living, the developer may obtain a partial occupancy certificate to allow families to come in and start a living.

Once all the phases are complete, the permanent occupancy certificate must replace the partial occupancy certificate.

Please note that the partial occupancy certificate doesn’t suffice as a legal document, nor can it be used to avail income-tax rebates or obtain loans by mortgaging the flat, nor can you resale the flat.


It’s a great feeling to own our home, and challenging to achieve this feat today in India. You go through several hardships, sacrifices and dedication to have at least one home in your lifetime.

When you have earned what you deserved, it’s your prime responsibility to keep it secure and its value retained against time. Out of the many things the Occupancy Certificatecomes is that one piece of documentary evidence which establishes your property as a legal one.

Having an O.C. is a sure way to keep your property at a good value whenever you want to resale or mortgage it. Prospective buyers will show no interest in buying your property that doesn’t have a valid occupancy certificate. Most banks will deny your loan proposal to provide mortgage loans for a property without O.C.

A valid O.C. is the first step in acquiring an equally important conveyance deed.


What if our building doesn’t have an O.C.?

The O.C. is a mandatory document required to prove the legality of your building. Without an occupancy certificate, the concerned authorities may label your construction as illegal/unauthorised. It will also be difficult for you to sell or mortgage your property.

Despite several notifications to the developer, he is ignoring our request to provide us with O.C. What can we do?

You can approach Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) and file a complaint against the concerned developer.

Does O.C. help in procuring a home loan?

Banks provide loans only if all the legal obligations meet the standards. Having a valid O.C. is one of them. If a building doesn’t have an O.C., the bank will refuse to provide a loan against the concerned property.