What Is Floor area Ratio (FAR) or Floor area Index (FSI)
Floor Area Ratio (FAR) is an indicator of density in a project as well as it tells how much the house is worth in it. Today we will tell you what is FAR and how it is important for home customers.
Floor Area Ratio (FAR) or Floor Space Ratio (FSR) refers to the maximum floor space that can be built on a piece of land. In other words, it is the ratio between the total constructed floor area and the land area of the building. It is also called FSI i.e. Floor Space Index in some markets.
What is FAR or FSI?
Floor Area Ratio (FAR) or Floor Space Index (FSI) refers to the maximum floor space that can be built on a piece of land. It is the ratio between the total built-up floor area and the land area of a building.
Now understand the floor area ratio and its calculation.
The FAR of a project is the building’s total floor area (which includes the space covered by all the floors of the building) divided by the area of land on which the project is being constructed. The FAR is decided by the municipal corporation or development authorities as per the Development Control Regulations (DCR). It may vary from city to city or region.
If the size of the land or plot used for the project is 500 square feet and the FAR prescribed for that particular city/locality is 1.5, then the total floor area to be constructed would be 750 square feet (500×1.5). The maximum available space on the ground floor will be around 500 square feet, so it is only possible to build more than one floor on the remaining 250 square feet of built up area. Hence, keeping in mind the prescribed FAR and plot area in that particular location, the developer will be allowed to construct only one story building.
Floor Area Ratio and Floor Space Index
FSI, i.e. Floor Space Index, also known as Floor Area Ratio (FAR), is the ratio of the total built up area of the plot to the total area. FAR or FSI are used interchangeably. The only difference is that FAR is the ratio and FSI is the index, which is expressed in percentage.
The municipal council of a particular locality is responsible for setting the FSI limit within a certain limit to regulate the amount of construction and size of buildings in that area. FSI is a step that combines the height and footprints of a building, regulating it ensures flexibility in the design of the building.
For example, if a particular plot of 10000 square meters has an FSI of 1, then construction of 10000 square meters will be allowed for the project.
Similarly, if the FSI is 1.5 and you have 1,000 square feet of land, then, you can build a covered structure of 1,500 square feet. The formula is quite simple:
Plot Area x FSI = Build Up Area
Note: FAR of 1.5 is expressed as 150 percent of FSI.
Note that FSI will also be applicable on commercial buildings.
What is premium FSI?
Recently, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) allowed premium payment of 20% of the land value of the ready reckoner rate (RR) for conversion of industrial land to commercial or residential use. This can be done at the time of receipt of Commendation Certificate (CC). What is the meaning of this premium payment, leaving aside technical reasons? Regardless of the exact location or even the zone or type of building, a premium FSI will help you extend a legitimate FSI.
Premium is the fee paid to the government for allowing FSI flexibility.
Criteria for Premium FSI
|over 60 feet
So, if you have a road, whose width is 30-40 feet, then you can construct 20 percent more than the permissible FSI on payment of the required FSI charges.
Land Area x Normal FSI x Premium FSI in Percentage = Build Up Area
Importance of FAR for home customers
The FAR value is determined by the local municipal corporation to provide the most conducive living environment for the people of that place. During this, the density of population, availability of open spaces, environmental impact of the project and preparedness in case of natural calamity are taken into consideration. However, the method of calculating FAR varies from city to city. Usually the value does not cross 2.5.
The more floor area the builder has, the higher the building will be. So if you buy a property in such a project, you will be living in a denser area and you will have to bear the cost of electricity, water, clubhouse, swimming pool, elevators, etc., along with sharing basic amenities with other citizens.
However, the resale value for a project with a lower FAR is likely to be higher than the property in a project with a higher FAR. This is because a project with a lower FAR means smaller buildings, lower population density, and more open space around the project.
Advantages of Floor Area Ratio
The rules and guidelines regarding FARs help in keeping the construction in check and to some extent also ensure the structural safety of a building. Illegal constructions will increase in the absence of FAR and FSI regulations. Here are some of the advantages of FAR:
– There is a clear demarcation between open and built spaces.
Helps authorities to promote sustainable, planned development.
What should you know about FAR violations?
FAR violation by a builder comes to light only when the development authority issues the completion certificate. Therefore, homebuyers should check the completion certificate before buying a house in any project. If you were to apply for a loan, buying a property in a project that violates the city/locality’s FAR norms can seriously impact your loan eligibility.
Exception in floor area ratio
Some of the essential exceptions to the FAR are common spaces, parking areas, and any internal open spaces such as balconies, basements used only for parking, attics, outdoor spaces, sports courts, etc. These areas are not included in the FAR.
Frequently asked questions about Floor Area Ratio
There is a reason why FARs are fixed in different areas or need to be decided by the authorities. For example, in areas that are vulnerable to earthquakes, it is unsafe to allow real estate developers to build high-rise buildings without any limits. On the other hand, a higher FAR allows the builder to build more units, thus reducing the cost of development.
Nevertheless, the input cost in manufacturing is also an important factor in the final price will be. Therefore, a marginal increase in FAR cannot bring down the property prices.
The FARs are based on the Development Control Regulations (DCR) and calculated keeping in mind the safety of the surrounding space and structure. Tier-2 and Tier-3 cities generally have fewer job opportunities and are less developed or under-developed. FAR is not the only factor that affects the growth of the city.
Floor Area Ratio in Indian Cities
Real estate developers often ask for higher FARs to bridge the demand-supply gap. Often, unscrupulous builders can also violate FAR rules. It is very important to follow the rules, so that safe living conditions can be provided for all. The range of FAR in India is between 1 to 3.5.
FAR in Residential Complex: Plot Housing
FAR in Group Housing
The number of houses is calculated based on the density pattern given in the development plan, which takes into account the population of 4.5 persons per dwelling unit. The maximum FAR is 125 or 1.25. Depending on the growth pattern and it should not exceed 150 then a higher FAR can be given.
Latest Update on FAR
Premium FSI in Karnataka
In June 2021, the Karnataka government issued a notification regarding premium FARs, allowing developers and citizens to build an additional 0.6 times the existing floor area ratio. The minimum road width for premium floor area ratio should be nine meters and only in areas that have been identified as ‘impact zones’. This move will not only bring more revenue to the government but will also give a boost to vertical growth in the real estate sector.
Delhi’s Master Plan for 2041
In the upcoming Master Plan 2041 for Delhi, it is hoped that the capital will change. Redevelopment activities can be seen in residential colonies, which are being developed for more than 50 years. The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) is preparing the Delhi Master Plan 2041 in collaboration with the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA). DDA Vice-Chairman Anurag Jain said that DDA will give its support whenever needed. Some colonies, which have single floor houses, will benefit as the earlier FAR was 1.33, which is now 2.
Maharashtra may reduce payment on FAR
In a bid to recover the health of the ailing real estate sector in the country’s financial capital, the Maharashtra government may reduce the premium liability paid by builders to take advantage of the buildable area for their projects in Mumbai. Last year, the previous government had reduced the ready reckoner value from 50 to 40 percent for a period of two years. It can be further reduced by 10-15 percent.
Punjab Local Bodies Department to identify land for affordable housing
Local bodies in Punjab are in the process of identifying land for building affordable housing. There are two categories of units, apartments with 60 square meters for Economically Weaker Section (EWS) and 110 square meters units for Middle Income Group (MIG). However, the cost of the project is still to be considered. For projects between one acre to five acres, the FAR is 3.50.
DDA may extend the deadline for payment of FAR charges
In view of the Kovid-19 epidemic, the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has extended the last date for payment of use-conversion charges and additional FAR charges. Its last date is 31 December 2020. This decision was taken in a meeting led by Delhi’s LG Anil Baijal. Taking to Twitter, Baijal wrote, “Sale of 50% EWS flats under DDA quota in Group Housing Projects has been simplified, thereby avoiding double stamp duty charges, thereby reducing cost and facilitating speedy allotment.” DDA office will give more information, which is awaited.
CHB will increase FAR in its most expensive housing scheme
Chandigarh Housing Board’s (CHB) latest housing scheme is in Sector 53, where 1BHK properties for low-income groups are priced at Rs 86 lakh while 3BHK units cost Rs 1.50 crore, attracting a large number of interested buyers is. In March 2020, the housing scheme was to be scrapped, but the authorities reconsidered it. As per the latest development, the CHB has again submitted a proposal to the Union Territory Administration to increase the FAR to make the housing scheme more attractive. According to the latest report, the entire plan is being reworked.
UP approves higher FAR for industrial plots
The Uttar Pradesh government has given permission for mixed-use of industrial plots. For areas that have already been developed, the FAR will be increased to 2.5 percent and 1.5 will be the common FAR plus a purchasable FAR. In areas that are yet to be developed, the FAR will be 3.5, which includes 2.5 as the common FAR and the forest purchasable FAR. Although it varies from place to place.
Yes, they are used as synonyms. FAR is the floor area ratio and FSI is the floor space index. The ratio is calculated by dividing the built-up area of the building and the total size of the plot.
If the FSI is 2.5, it means that the builder has a plot of 1000 square meters, he can construct 2.5×1,000 square meters i.e. 2,500 square meters on it.
GFA stands for Gross Floor Area, which is used to calculate the FAR. The tenant’s area, meeting room, mechanical equipment area, stairwell, lobby, toilet, etc., are included in GFA.
Most developers look for a high FAR. However, a good floor area ratio will also depend on the city and the various localities within the city. In metros like Delhi, the FAR ranges from 1.25 to 3.
Floor area ratio does not include free space like parking, garage etc.