Moving in difficult due to permit delays

Delays issuing Building Completion Certificates (BCC) are keeping owners and renters from moving into recently completed buildings, say developers.

Contractors often have to wait up to a month to be issued the permits from Yangon City Development Committee (YCDC), which translates into lost revenue for developers unable to move in tenants and owners immediately after the project is finished.

YCDC officials dispute these claims, however, saying that the process is usually wrapped up within a week.

Still, developers say their businesses are being hurt by delays in the process.

“The buildings have finished, the buyers want to move in, but with the BCC delays we sometimes have to rent rooms at other buildings for buyers until we get permission to move them in,” said Daw Khin Aye, who owns land and cooperates with developers for buildings.

“It’s taking between one and two months for buildings to get BCC permits,” she said.

Some developers say part of the problem is ascertaining what type of land the buildings are on.

U Aung Min, manager of Myat Min contractors, said uncertain land ownership often complicates the BCC permitting process.

If the site has an electricity meter and clearly stands on grant land, then the process can be easy, he said.

Buildings in Yangon’s hinterlands are particularly likely to be delayed, with some projects taking over a year to gain a BCC if they are not built on grant land, he added.

BCC permits are only required for buildings over five floors.

Residents want to move as quickly as possible, and are often frustrated when the project is complete but they are not allowed to move in.

“We want the department to solve this problem quickly for the residents,” he said.

YCDC officials countered that they are providing the BCCs quickly – provided the developer has completed all the necessary steps.

“They might say it’s random, that it takes one month or two months, but actually the department is issuing BCC permits in one week,” said YCDC Department of Engineering (Building) deputy director U Nay Win.

Firms applying for BCCs need to complete their responsibilities laid out in YCDC guidelines if they want to get permits quickly, he said.

“If everything is fine, we will give the permit,” he said.

Contactors applying for BCC permits are required to have evidence they have paid appropriate taxes, approval from fire brigades, concrete plans to install an electricity meter, water hook-ups, and road and bridge approval as applicable, according to the Department of Engineering (Building).

Once these checks are complete, department officials check the site to make sure it meets up with the submitted paperwork, said U Nay Win.

“If the work isn’t completely finished, the residents will be in danger, so we can’t allow them to move in,” he said.

The process is also cost-free, he added.

If people live in a building without a BCC permit, the department can fine contractors some K100,000 per room, according to U Nay Win.


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