What Is the APF Number of a Real Estate Property? Know What It Is and Why It Matters

January 25, 2023
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Buying their own home is a pretty big deal for many individuals, as it is one of the major milestones of life. But you have to be extremely careful while navigating the house-buying process, as it is rather intricate and there are a lot of elements that you need to watch out for. One such element that holds immense significance in real estate is the APF number. It is imperative for a real estate property to have a valid APF number, since it makes the home loan availing process much easier. As one of the leading builders in India, L&T Realty is here to simplify this term for the uninitiated, so that all of you can make informed decisions while purchasing the dwelling of your dreams.

APF Number: Breaking Down the Real Estate Jargon
An abbreviated form of ‘Approved Project Financial Number,’ APF number is a unique numerical code that is assigned to a developer’s property by a licensed lender, housing finance corporation (HFC), or a bank it is associated with. Any infrastructural or real estate development must come under the scope of these funding institutions, or they must offer housing loans. For example, be it our own residential property L&T Veridian at Emerald Isle, or any other property developed by us or by even another builder, all housing projects must have APF numbers assigned to them by one or more lenders.

Why the APF Number Matters
When a housing project is affiliated with an APF number, it indicates the lender’s confidence in the particular undertaking. Besides, it is also a sign that important official documentation of the project has been approved. Therefore, no residential project can receive its distinct APF number without acquiring the faith of the financiers. Banks are allowed to verify this at any point thereafter too. Funding institutions confirm a project’s legality through intense scrutiny, and only then grant it the necessary KYC (Know Your Customer) approvals. With an APF number, the home loan application process becomes much more streamlined, which protects borrowers from the hassle of time-consuming paperwork.

Pro-tip – You must never forget to request the APF number from the realtor, as it can help you know if their property or project is registered or not, or whether or not it has the approval of a housing finance company or a recognised bank.

Understanding How an APF Number Is Generated
Builders must produce all relevant documents to the lender, to show them that their housing project has the requisite approval and permits. These papers encompass NOCs, government clearances, approved plans, sale deeds, title deeds, and leasehold/freehold paperwork. Moreover, developers have to present documentation of approvals obtained from the fire, forest, pollution, and electric departments. The banks and HFCs study all these papers in addition to the developer’s KYC check, and after a thorough examination of the housing project’s legal and technological viability, they give it a unique APF number.

What purpose does the APF number serve?
It is an authentication symbol that is indicative of timely delivery of apartments as per schedule. The APF number also reaffirms the developer’s reputation and credibility, ensures that their project was meticulously inspected, and that the loan repayment is secure.

Factors That Influence the Bank’s Decision Regarding APF Number Provision

  • Most of the banks consider builders with at least a 5 year presence in the real estate industry, as well as a track record of timely project delivery. Alternatively, they should have minimum 3 projects certified by the ISO, or they should be a member of the Chamber of Housing department in any state or union territory of India.
  • The building quality is also a major factor that goes into consideration.
  • The housing project must also have the approval of a few other reputed banks or institutions.
  • The square footage of under-construction real estate projects must be specified.
  • Builders featured on the Reserve Bank of India’s ‘negative list’ are not considered by banks.

Post-examination, the builder and the HFC or the bank sign the agreement. These authorities also demand provision of details describing the things to be done after the building period is over. They may have other requirements, based on the builder’s project history.
Therefore, investing in a project with APF numbers is always a sound decision. So be it apartments in Mumbai or other cities, you must always verify the property’s APF number to know that you are making the right choice!