While the housing market in the United States is going belly up, the construction boom in India refuses to subside. With the new economy booming, demand for city housing is at an all-time high. However with incomplete and insufficient information and awareness, consumers can be duped by unscrupulous developers who promise the moon but fail to deliver even a rock. Before the age of the Internet, you couldn’t do much except perhaps bad-mouth the developer and warn your friends off. The developer always won after finding enough suckers for his dubious scheme.
But thanks to Youtube, blogs and other new-age Internet technologies, getting your opinion out there is much easier. One such disgruntled customer from property developers, Unitech Group shot a video comparing the promises with the end result and uploaded it on the web. The result – many potential buyers are now warned and have begun withdrawing their bookings with the firm (see comments).
One quick observation about ground realities in India. Suing is not particularly common and even if you do, the lawsuit takes ages and is often considered not worth your time. So in that spirit, spreading the word about dubious practices of developers via a mass-media outlet like YouTube does maximum damage to the property developers. Hopefully, this correction in information asymmetry will give more power to the consumer and make developers more accountable. The video is attached below:
Incidentally, websites set up to complain against errant homebuilders is not a new phenomenon in the United States. The following websites do exactly that – hold homebuilders accountable and spread the word on dubious practices:
- Homeowners Against Deficient Dwellings (HADD).
- Homeowners for Better Building (HOBB).
- Crap Construction.
- Exposing New Homebuilders.
- Neighborhoods for Quality Homes.
Targeted sites towards specific construction companies are pretty popular:
- K. Hovnanian Homes Suck and Not Khov.
- Levitt & Sons Problems.
- The Pulte Homes Experience, Fight Pulte, and My Pulte Experience.
- Stop BEAZER Homes.
Mind you, I am not an anti-business individual but simply believe in holding any organization that is providing a service accountable. More information is always a good thing. So share your opinions and reviews of your home-buying experience. Even if you have had a good experience, you might want to share it so as to encourage good business practices that provide good customer satisfaction.