Decoding Real Estate Terms – Carpet Area, Built Up Area, And Super Built Up Area

Venturing into the fascinating process of property purchase, it’s not unusual to come across jargon that means next to nothing to us. As the builder goes on and on about Carpet Area and Built Up Area, we scratch our heads trying to understand how it’s going to impact our needs and finances. Not being able to differentiate these could mean a big difference in the amount you pay per sq. ft. of space. Here’s a quick guide to what they mean.

Every property has three different measures of available space or square footage – the carpet area, the built up area, and the super built up area.

What Is Carpet Area?

As the term indicates, Carpet Area refers to the space that can actually be covered by a carpet in a home – if you discount the thickness of the inner walls. The total measure of the floor area available for your use (eliminating the walls or any utility ducts) as rooms including kitchen, drawing room, bathrooms, and bedrooms is your carpet area. Carpet area does not comprise of the space swallowed by common areas such as the lobby, elevator, staircase, play area or parking area.

It’s good to check with the builder about the balcony in some cases because some builders tend to add it as carpet area while others do not. Usually, Carpet area forms about 70% of the built-up area.

What Is Built Up Area?

A built up area is simply the square footage that comes after adding carpet area and wall area (thickness of the walls). Built up area or the plinth area is the entire size of your apartment unit inclusive of – walls, the sit-out, balcony, terrace and any utility.

As an estimate, it is usually 30% more than the carpet area. So if you are picking up an apartment with 2000 sq. ft. of built up area, the usable space is only 1400 sq. ft. That is a big difference!

What is Super Built-up area?

The Super Built-up area is the one most commonly cited by the builders when attempting a sale. It is the area calculated by adding the built up area and common area inclusive of the corridor, elevator, lobby, playing area and so on. In case of apartments with different built up areas the super built up area is calculated according to the size ration.

Prior to the implementation of RERA, a developer used to charge the buyer on the basis of the super built-up area, which is the reason why it is also known as ‘saleable’ area.

<<Create an infographic>>

Carpet area Built up area Super built up area
Actual usable area of the apartment excluding the thickness of inner walls Carpet area + thickness of walls + any utility + balcony Built up area + common area inclusive of the corridor, elevator, lobby, clubhouse etc.

 How will it affect homebuyers and prices?

  • Regardless of the built up or carpet area, there wouldn’t be much of a difference as far as price of a property is concerned.  As the builder won’t be paying for the common area by themselves, it’s easier for them to adjust the price per sq. ft. But knowing the difference will ensure exactly what you are paying for and help you make an informed decision. It will also help you compare different properties on a similar scale.
  • With the implementation of the RERA Act, the real estate industry is now more regulated. In addition to bringing transparency in all transactions, RERA mandates that builders have to follow the carpet area-based pricing module for both residential and commercial properties. Prior to this, the pricing was based on super built up area.

While it’s impossible to know all the terms in real estate like a pro, it’s vital that we at least know the important ones affecting our property purchase decision. It will always be an added advantage as you deep-dive into the project.

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