How To Give Your Rental Home A Makeover

Only because you live in a rented apartment, it should not stop you from giving your home a bit of a makeover. The key is to keep the exercise simple and inexpensive, and to ensure there is no harm done to the property. Also, you must consult your landlord before giving your rented home a facelift.

PropGuide shares five easy and inexpensive ways to decorate a rental accommodation:


A splash of colour

The best way to give your rental apartment a quick makeover is painting it. Restyle the house with the shade that complements the interiors and your lifestyle. Neutral shades are the safest for a rental house, as a bright shade might give your landlord a scare. Lighter shades also make a small room look bigger.


Raise the curtains

One of the quickest and most cost-effective ways to update a rental home is to buy modern curtains and blinds. You can be creative with the curtains and style them differently without any permanent changes to the house. 


Choose the right furniture and furnishings

Add a little of colour to your room by bringing small pieces of furniture or furnishing. These may include cushions, light chair and tables or bookshelves. Light on your pocket, such articles can give a vibrant colour to your abode. has partnered with expert service providers, to provide best-in-class furniture on rent to our users. Check out our furniture on rent section, for renting premium furniture at affordable prices and avail of attractive offers.


On display

Even if rented, your home is your world. And, to feel more connected with it, you could display your family pictures by creating a gallery wall. Decorative mirrors are also a great way to enhance space, and they also trick the eye into thinking a space is bigger than it really is.


Keep it green

By bringing plants indoors, you not only liven up the interiors but also ensure the air around you is purer. That apart, flowers, shrubs and small plants can really light up your mood when you come home after work. Potted plants and classical hanging planters are some of the best ways to incorporate greenery into your home.

Feng Shui: Get Lucky By Using Elephant As Part Of Your Home Décor

In Feng Shui, elephants have a great significance in home décor.  A Chinese practice of positioning things in your surroundings, Feng Shui balances the yin and yang and maintains the flow of chi.

An elephant symbolises Buddha and the Lord Ganesha to bring home strength, good luck, and harmony in family bonds. However, all of this could be achieved only if an elephant’s statue or pictures are used in a certain way at certain places.

Also, a common belief is that every form of this animal you use should have its trunk facing upwards for positive results.

MakaaniQ shares ways in which adding elephant to your home décor could bring positivity to your home:

  • Welcome home the good luck by placing a statue of an elephant or a pair at your front door. You can buy large pieces if your home has a wide entrance. While placing them, ensure that they face inwards for positive results.
  • Elephants are also known as the protectors or guardians. So, for those looking at protecting your home from evil or negative impact, place this pair of elephants facing outwards. This would help prevent the loss of chi and, thus, maintain balance.

Elephant Entrance(Dreamstime)

  • For a harmonious relationship between a couple, place a pair of elephants in a form of statue, painting or even cushion covers.

Elephant Cushions(Dreamstime)

  • For a stronger mother and child relationship, place a mother and child duo of elephants. These in the form of a statue or a painting could be placed in parents’ or children’s room.

Mother child elephant(Dreamstime)

  • You could also place elephant symbols in the form of toys, statue, wallpaper, cushion covers or others in your children’s room to strengthen their knowledge and help them do better in academics. Make sure that it is placed on your child’s study table.

Elephant study(Dreamstime)

  • To bring positive growth in your career, place an elephant on the front door of your office and also at the workstation at your home, if you have any. An elephant, which symbolises wisdom and power, is known to energise your career, in case planning to change a job or even enhancing your current job. Moreover, an elephant with a face on your work diary or in other work stationery would help you enhance your leadership qualities, and help you perform under pressure.

Elephant workstation(Dreamstime)

  • To bring balance into your life, opt for an elephant picture or statue that is holding something, for instance, a crystal ball or any other such element. This form of elephant balances all the elements in your life.

Elephant career(Dreamstime)

  • For Indian homes, Lord Ganesha plays a significance role and is considered to be the first god to be worshipped when starting something new. So, what better than having an idol of Lord Ganesha at home to bring in peace and prosperity.

7 Vastu Tips To Welcome Positive Energy Into Your Home

Also Read: Vastu Tips For Placing Elephant Paintings & Statues

What To Do If Someone Forges Your Property Papers?

Delhi-based Keshav Mondal’s 70-year-old mother has been a victim of property fraud. It recently came to the noticed of the Mondal family that a land parcel registered in the name of Keshav’s mother in 1992 has now been transferred in the name of another person with the help of forged signatures and photograph. Property frauds of this nature are a nation-wide phenomenon.

Recently, Vadodara-based builder Bhupendra Shah, with the help of two accomplices, forged documents to take over one Jaishree Shah’s property. The trio created a fake power of attorney and used it to carry out the transactions, the rightful owner says. In Hyderabad, the Metropolitan Magistrate at Malkajgiri sentenced four members of a family to three years of rigorous imprisonment and fine, for forging a woman’s signature to let out a plot registered in her name.

Since there has been a drastic increase in the number of instances where cheats resort to forgery, what should one do to ensure the safety of one’s property?


Steps you must take when you suspect forgery

Ajay Sethi, who practices property law at the Bombay High Court, says “A victim must file a police complaint for forgery, fabrication of documents and cheating, as soon as they find out about the situation. In the case of Mondal, he must also file a declaratory suit stating that his mother is the absolute owner of the said property and that the fraudulent sale agreement should not be considered.”

It is also important to file the complaint at the police station where the property is situated. If a fraudster tries to establish his rights over a property, it becomes important to lodge a complaint on grounds of impersonation. It would also be appropriate to write to the inspector-general of registration and the sub-registrar and bring the matter to their notice. The victim could also get published in national dailies a warning, stating that the original property owner has learnt about the fraud, and is not in the know of any transactions that might have taken place. According to Kolkata-based lawyer Devajyoti Barman, it is also important to maintain physical possession of such a property, apart from keeping safe the original legal documents that establish your ownership.

 IPC Sections under which forgery is punishable

According to Yogendra Singh Rajawat, a practicing lawyer at the Rajasthan High Court, such cases fall under sections 420 (cheating), 467 (forgery of documents), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using a forged document as a genuine one) and also 120B (applicable when there is more than one person party to the act), of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Can Residential Property Be Put To Commercial Use?

Mumbai-based Deepika Khurana, a 27-year-old doctor, wanted to convert a room of her rented apartment into a clinic. However, her landlord told her if she did so, he would be forced to increase the monthly rental, as he would be liable to pay commercial property tax on his residential property. When Khurana consulted a lawyer over conversion of residential property to commercial property, she was informed that her landlord was right.


What does the law say?

If the zoning rules and the housing society management rules allow it, you can use or rent your residential property for commercial activity. However, states have different sets of rules on conversion of residential property to commercial property. Some states allow up to 30 per cent area of a house to be put to commercial use by professionals such as doctors, lawyers and chartered accountants, but others do not.

In case your state allows this, it is necessary to get an approval from the housing society before conversion of residential property to commercial property. Depending on the nature of the business, it may also be necessary to obtain permission from the local municipal authority for the conversion of a flat into a commercial establishment. Once a property is marked as commercial property, it would be treated as a commercial property for all purposes, which includes paying more as property tax.

There are three things that you have to keep in mind before converting a part of your house into an office:

  • Get a shop and establishment licence from the municipal authority concerned. 
  • Before you apply, be clear on the area you would need and the kind of business you plan to carry out. 
  • The civic body would levy commercial charges on the property and water and power supply, depending upon the area, the property size and the nature of business activity.

It is to be noted that there are certain professions that have been exempted from this. Typically, if you are running a teaching, painting, yoga, dance or tuition classes from your premises, you would not be liable to pay commercial charges.

Legal Tips To Buy A Resale Property

A resale property is a good option from a buyer’s perspective. Buying a house in resale means you will not have to spend any money as rent. You will also not have to eagerly wait to get the possession of your dream home; you will have it ready to move in. You also save money as you do not have to pay many taxes, as is the case with under-construction properties.

Here are some things to bear in mind before you seal the deal:

  • All the documents that are required in the primary sale of property are also required in the resale of the property. It is important to ensure that the seller produces all the relevant original documents. 
  • If you are buying an apartment in a housing complex, you can’t ignore the original sale deed and the society share certificate because the property transaction can’t take place without them. 
  • The buyer should also be mindful of the fact that property transfer and re-registration are necessary in case of resale of a property, too. 
  • Apart from the sale deed, other papers that are needed in the sub-registrar’s office are a letter from the society giving details about the number of floors in the building, the construction year, the apartment’s built-up area and the number of elevators, etc. 
  • It is also crucial to check whether the seller is the true owner of the property. The buyer should seek clear ownership history if the property has changed hands multiple times. The registrar will establish the authenticity of these documents. 
  • Ensure that the seller doesn’t have any dues pending to the society or against the house which you may have to pay later. 
  • Also required is an assessment bill to the society from the local civic body, a copy of the property card and a receipt for the payment of the registration fee. 
  • In case the property is mortgaged, the owner needs to give an undertaking to the bank that he has agreed to give property documents to the buyer upon the home loan foreclosure. When you transfer the money to the seller’s account, the bank will release the original property documents along with an NOC. 
  • Other challenges that a buyer of a resale flat may face include the absence of proper chain of documentation, especially in cases where the property has changed hands a couple of times in the past. If the property is over three decades old, it is possible that it was never formally registered. Registering it at the current point in time would put the onus of paying the stamp duty in arrears on the buyer.

Also Read: Are You Ready To Sell Your Home This Year?

How NRIs Can Use Power Of Attorney To Manage Their Assets

If you are living abroad and managing your assets in India has become a headache for you, Power of Attorney (PoA) is the perfect instrument for you. Because of its various benefits, even resident Indians tend to execute POAs. People having numerous assets find it tough to be present everywhere physically. Therefore, they execute POAs to delegate the responsibility.


What is a PoA?

In the simplest of terms, it is the power (right) that a person (principal) grants to an attorney (a legal representative). A principal-legal representative relationship is established between the two and the principal would be bound by the acts of the legal representative.

For instance, if a person has purchased a property in India and cannot be physically present to process the registration, he can delegate these rights/duties to any relative/friend by means of a registered power of attorney.

Types of PoA

Special PoA: In a special PoA, the power of the agent is restricted and limited to a specific purpose. A special POA may be transaction specific and the POA ceases on the completion of transaction.

General PoA: Under a general PoA, broad powers are granted to the representative to make decisions on behalf of the principal. Besides, the representative can also carry out the various activities on behalf of the principal without any limitation on transactions.

Durable PoA: A durable POA remains effective for a lifetime, unless it is explicitly cancelled. A specific clause can be inserted in the document, stating that the representative’s power would remain valid even if the principal becomes incapacitated.

POA in real estate

In real estate, PoA could be used for the purposes mentioned below:

  • Mortgage, exchange, sell, lease, collect rent, grant, borrow
  • Manage and settle the disputes
  • Perform the acts as required by banks, insurance companies and enter into contracts, deal with bonds, etc.

Power of attorney by more than two persons

In cases where a property has numerous owners, it would be difficult for all the people concerned to collectively complete a transaction. In such cases, granting the power of attorney to one person would make matters simple. As a result, this person would be empowered to act on behalf of all the owners collectively.

How Power of Attorney can be executed in India

If an NRI is present in India, he could before going abroad execute the POA from India itself.

Step 1: The NRI needs to get the desired matter of the POA drafted and typed on non-judicial stamp paper of adequate value which is generally Rs 100.

Step 2: Along with the legal representative and two witnesses, the person is now required to visit the Sub-Registrar’s Office.

Step 3: It should be ensured that all the persons going to the Sub-Registrar’s Office are carrying their valid identity proof. Photocopy of the POA, along with the original copy, must also be taken along.

Step 4: At the Sub-Registrar’s office signatures, photographs and fingerprints of the party will be collected.

Step 5: Now, you need to collect the registered POA on the due date from the Sub-Registrar’s Office. This might take three-five days after the formalities have been completed.

What if you are outside India?

If you are settled abroad and won’t be able to visit India in the near future, you may execute a POA from the country of your domicile through the Indian Embassy/ Consulate. There are two ways to execute a POA from abroad:

Legalisation: In this case, signatures of the notary or judge before whom the POA is executed are required to be authenticated by the duly accredited representative of the Indian Embassy/Consulate. According to Section 3 of the Diplomatic and Consular Officers (Oaths and Fees) Act, 1948, notarising a deed from an authorised officer of the Indian Consulate/Embassy would be considered a valid notary. Such a POA is not required to be stamped at the time of execution. However, it needs to be stamped within three months from the date of receipt of the POA in India. Stamp duty would be payable according to Section 2(17) read with Schedule-I of the Indian Stamp Act, 1899, when the deed is presented for registration in India.

Apostalisation: The deed of POA executed outside India are proven through an apostallisation process which is governed by the Hague Convention, 1961. Also known as superlegalisation, apostille is a certificate which confirms and verifies the signature/seal of the person who authenticated the document. However, this deed, too, needs to comply with Indian laws such as the Indian Registration Act, 1908, and the Power of Attorney Act, 1882. You also have to pay the stamp duty on this. If one wants to obtain apostille in the US, he/she can refer to this link

Regulation of Power Of Attorney

A PoA paper should be interpreted to include all the necessary powers for its execution. The POA has to be given a strict interpretation and no extra rights should be construed, unless they are specifically mentioned. For instance, if the POA mentions “right to lease”, the “right to sell” can’t be attributed to it.

The representative has to act within his scope and cannot bind the principal by his acts which are beyond his authority. As an NRI, you can’t be sued or held responsible for the fraud of the representative, unless it is proved that the fraud was done in connivance with you.

Revocation of Power Of Attorney

If the principal thinks that the legal representative is misusing the power granted to him or is unable to properly discharge the duties assigned to him, he has the option to revoke the PoA. Revocation might also be required if the principal thinks that now he is in a position to take care of his assets.

How to revoke a Power Of Attorney?

  • You may revoke a PoA during your lifetime.
  • PoA is also revoked when the principal dies or becomes insane or is declared insolvent.
  • PoA can be revoked on mutually agreed terms between the principal and the representative.
  • A PoA is revoked when the specific transaction for which it was executed has been accomplished.

Revocation of POA has to be done in the same manner in which it was executed. If the PoA was registered with the Sub-Registrar, you have to get it cancelled from the same office. Also, the representative and the parties concerned need to be duly informed about the cancellation of the POA. If interests of a reasonably large number of people are involved, it is recommended that a notice be published in a newspaper. A notice about the revocation of the POA could also be posted on the property where it can be visible to the general public.

Sale through PoA is illegal

There have been many cases where people resort to property sale through POA to avoid payment of stamp duty, which is illegal. Besides, selling properties where the owner has only right over possession and no right over ownership through PoA is also illegal. Proper transfer of title and ownership cannot take place, if the sale is done through a POA and not by means of a sale deed.

Why You Must Consider Homes In Safer Localities

Home ownership is gratifying on so many levels but, its basic purpose remains the same. Everybody needs a roof over their heads to protect them from all possible dangers. Thus, homes that do not fulfill safety requirements in any manner or form, would be of little value to humans. Unfortunately, sometimes, we are forced to overlook safety issues, to be able to afford the  property in the first place. It is to be noted though that a property that lies in an area prone to criminal activities, can seldom achieve the same value as a property located in a safe neighbourhood. 

In 1995, prominent sociologist Kenneth F Ferraro in his research paper, Fear of crime: Interpreting victimization risk, tried to elaborate on how perceived risks do similar damage to housing as real risks. Much before that, Terry L Baumer tried to establish how fear of crime had a negative impact on the housing quality and how the perceived fear did similar damage to residents’ mental health as the real crime.  

Safety of the location determines market value of the property 

“Perception plays a major role in shaping the property market value as far as safety goes. This is precisely why, rates of property in Gurgaon is much higher when compared to the prices in Noida – the two most prominent markets falling within the ambit of the national capital region,” explains Amit Mitra, an independent property broker from the NCR market. “Rates vary significantly within property markets because of the same factor,” Mitra adds. 

Rates of property in cities such as Hyderabad and Pune are also much higher when compared to cities of a similar scale not only because of the tremendous growth they have seen but also because they have continuously been finding a mention on global lists ranking the world’s safest cities. NRI investments in these property markets have also been comparatively higher, private estimates show. The same is true of Chennai and Bengaluru, too. 

Also read: Localities In India’s Big Cities That Are Ideal For Women Homebuyers

Properties in unsafe locations garner less appreciation 

While one may have to overlook safety issues in order to afford the property in the first place, the perceived monetary benefits can turn into a far greater loss considering rates of property in such areas would see little to zero appreciation. Then, there’s the impact on one’s health. “Fearing for your safety all the time could do a great deal of harm to our mental health. This could result in chronic mental disorders,” cautions Dr Deepak Gupta, a child psychiatrist who practices at Delhi’s Gangaram Hospital. “Residents living in unsafe areas also try to move out as less as possible. For the same reason, they keep a strict vigil on the movements of family members, especially children. That fails half the purpose of property ownership,” Gupta adds. 

Also read: Why Police Verification Of Tenants Is Must & How It’s Done

Should You Hire The Same Agent For Buying And Selling Your Property?

If you are trying to sell your property and find yourself a new home at the same time, you may consider having the same property advisor for both the transactionsWhile that may seem like a good idea, there are certain pros and cons one must consider before deciding to hire a common agent for both, buying and selling a house  

Pros of hiring the same agent to sell and buy a home  

Hiring is quick: If you plan to hire the same agent for both, buying and selling a property, it would be a much easier process. You would have to interview a lesser number of brokers to select the right one. This will save you time.  

Cost effective: Hiring a single agent can help you save money. Do note that even when you hire one agent, you will have to pay him for both the deals. You could, however, negotiate the cost in such a situation and get a bargain on the total brokerage to be paid.  

On average, a broker takes a two per cent commission for an under-Rs-50-lakh deal and a per cent for the ones above Rs 50 lakhs. In a situation where a person hires an agent to complete both the deals, a customer could negotiate on the commission to be paid. 

Single point of contact: It is easier to explain your requirements to one person rather than two. It is also easier to deal with one agent, on a day-to-day basis.   

Cons of hiring the same agent to sell and buy a home  

SpecialisationIt can be difficult to find an agent that has expertise in both, selling as well as buying. What if you are unable to scan the right ones and are stuck with one such agent who is only good at one of the transactions – selling or buying. 

There are chances that you will end up with an agent that has tremendous knowledge in buying a property but lacks the knowledge to sell one. A customer has to tread carefully when hiring an agent. In such a case, a background check can be of help.  

Location of the agentFor customers looking to buy a property in a completely different locality or city from where they are selling one, having a common agent for both the services is not recommended. Agents generally have a lot of knowledge only about the locations where they operate. However, you could check with your agent to help you sell a property by finding you another agent from the same locality where you plan to purchase.  

Facilities You Need In An Apartment For Staying Safe

Apartments are more popular than houses because they are considered cheaper with no maintenance charges associated. Most apartment complexes have a designated security system, gymnasium, community halls and many other facilities. However, one should not rely entirely on the security and safety facilities provided by the contractors. The following pointers should be added to the apartment to ensure safe and healthy living.


Before moving in

  1. Assessment and exploration of the surroundings: A thorough background check for a safe neighbourhood devoid of criminal activities, should be done before purchasing the apartment.
  2. Ensure the apartment has:
  • A working peephole with a wide angle view.
  • Proper locks on all doors and windows that open and close properly.
  • Secure covering (grills) on balconies to prevent tripping over.
  • Secure compound walls all over the complex.
  • Fire exits during emergencies.


After moving in

  1. Invest in a security system: Install a proper security system equipped with biometric trackers and CCTV cameras outside the apartment to wade off a potential threat.
  2. Install an alarm: If you tend to leave the apartment locked up during a certain period of time, these systems will notify the owner and also the security guards of the compound, about a break in. Also, the loud alarm often scares a burglar away.
  3. Fire extinguishers: They should be handy at an accessible place as one cannot predict when emergencies can occur.
  4. Share a good rapport with the security guard: They will notify you of any untoward incident that might occur in your apartment.


Finally, to keep it etched in your mind, remember these three words: enquire, evaluate and ensure.

Enquire: Take notice of the surroundings and the immediate vicinity where you hope to shift base with your family. Make detailed enquiries about the locality.

Evaluate: Calculate the positives and negatives about the locality and the overall profit you should receive if you change your residence. Look for schools and hospitals.

Ensure: Make sure all the security arrangements are made before moving in.


Tips To Pick The Right Door For Your Home

“When a person walks into the house, the first thing they notice is the entrance door. Earlier, while selecting doors, people use to consider doors only from the security point of view. However, now, with the modern innovation and style, doors come in many different designs and varieties. Right doors need to be chosen on the bases of the correct material, quality and durability,” points out Manish Bansal, director and CEO of Window Magic.

“Since doors are highly visible and one of the most utilised portions of a home, they deserve thoughtful attention when it is time to buy new ones. The right kind of doors are durable and withstand daily usage. They ensure minimal sound transfer between rooms and add character or style to the home’s overall interior design,” adds Bansal.

So, how do you pick the right type of door for your home?

Lift and slide doors: According to Bansal, lift and slide doors are designed for large opening and unobstructed views. People who prefer clear views and bigger size of doors may choose such doors. These doors are very popular in the market as they offer smoother functioning than any other standard sliding door. Being big, these doors give a panoramic view and make the room feel more spacious. These doors are also available in soundproof and weather resistant quality as well. Many people favour lift and slide doors as an extension of their living rooms.  

Casement doors: Casement doors are the ideal doors to add charm and beauty to the house. These doors inevitably keep the ambience warm and serene. Casement doors have features like multipoint-locking system, robust hinges and toughened laminated safety glasses. Casement doors in both, single and dual sash options are most preferred for the main entrance as their appearance is quite engaging and creates a beautiful entry.

Sliding doors: With these types of doors; a gentle horizontal push and you get the view of the outer world. Sliding doors are apt for modern structures as they do not cover much space and allow maximum natural light. The most important aspect of sliding doors are that they offer effective sound and weather barriers. 

Sliding doors also offer contemporary styling, excellent performance and smooth integration. Manufactured by implementing the highest standards of engineering along with creative imagination, styling and designing, sliding doors are as beautiful as they are reliable and secure for homes and offices.

Slide and fold doors: Slide and fold doors have a lot of flexibility and make the entrance welcoming. With more flexibility and comfort, the usability of slide and fold doors add a new dimension to homes and offices. These days, custom wood and aluminium, glass slide and fold doors, are in fashion. This unique combination gives not only a dramatic effect but also makes your surroundings appear spacious and large.


To create a décor that reflects one’s personality and is efficient, at the same time, can be a painstaking task. Now, you can decorate your house with the click of a mouse. has partnered with leading home interior platforms, to bring the best Interior Design Solutions to you. From modular kitchens to customised and full interiors, we’ve got you covered – from start to finish.


Some other considerations before you pick your door

While you are keenly looking at every detail of the interiors, did you think about the door that opens into your living room or bedrooms? Should the door be opening into the room or towards the outside? Which design or detail work and colour will go with the interior of that room?

Style of door should match the overall decor: The style of the door i.e. double, single, detailed work or plain, is something you must choose based on the overall décor of your home, and also basis the specific room of installation. For instance, if your home is traditionally designed, pick doors with carved wooden design. The door needs to complement the traditional décor and should have a regal design.

Choose the side of the door swing carefully: Not many pay attention to whether the door must open towards the room or outside. This can be an important aspect to keep in mind when installing a door as it can impact the complete look of your room. Choose between a right-hand or left-hand door – based on this, the handles and hinges will be installed.

Safety tip: Do not have a door that opens into a hall or corridor as this can be harmful.

Frame your door: A well-framed door will ensure that it is not badly sized and also keeps it away from being damaged in the long run. Make sure that the size of the frame is right for the door, to ensure easy opening and shutting.

Sound-proof doors: Make sure you install doors that are sound-proof to a certain extent. This will keep you away from unwanted noises from the outside. To make sure that this is achieved, interior doors are given a sound transmission class (STC) – this measures the loss of sound from a door. The higher the STC number the more sound-proof the door is. While 25 is the lowest STC number (you can hear normal speech), 40 is medium and 60 makes it completely soundproof.