Property 24/10 - 543

11 Mar 2021 12:00 am

This week on Property24.com: REBOSA welcomes audit of the EAAB; a foreigner's guide to buying property in South Africa; and what SA's Expropriation Bill means for property rights.

REBOSA welcomes audit of the EAAB
The Minister for Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation, Lindiwe Sisulu has ordered a forensic audit of Into the Estate Agents Fidelity Fund, including all the processes for its transactions and investments.

This comes after the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB) and the Real Estate Business Owners of South Africa (REBOSA) appeared in court, after alleged ongoing service delivery issues by the regulator.

REBOSA is taking legal action as "hundreds of estate agents around the country still struggling to get their Fidelity Fund Certificates for 2021".

“We are extremely thankful to see that Minister Sisulu is taking the EAAB’s failures seriously and that she has initiated investigations into the regulator's consistent inability to fulfil their mandate,” says Tony Clarke, Chairman of REBOSA. “This is a very powerful demonstration of support for our industry – the support we are grateful to have as we continue to fight for the rights of real estate professionals.”
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What does SA's Expropriation Bill mean for property rights?
The finalisation of the commentary process for South Africa's Expropriation Bill is set to conclude on 19 March. The proposed amendment of section 25 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, to, explicitly, allow for the expropriation of property without compensation has attracted the ire of many organisations and individuals - with more than 200 000 written submissions received.

But why exactly is the bill needed? According to the draft bill, expropriation of land without any compensation can only take place in extreme circumstances, as the new bill looks to align with South Africa's constitution, by defining how and when this controversial process can take place.

The new legislation is needed to correct the conflict of the apartheid-era Expropriation Act of 1975 with the Constitution of South Africa, which requires expropriation to be just and equitable. It also makes allowances for unregistered rights to be recognised, another point of contention surrounding the bill..
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Resolving disputes | Understanding proposed changes to the Sectional Title Act
A fallout with the body corporate, a neighbour or trustee over issues pertaining to your sectional title property needn’t be a stressful, highly-charged, drawn-out or costly affair when most disputes can be settled internally or via the community schemes Ombudsman.

Sectional Title schemes fall within the jurisdiction of this Ombud and any person who is either a party to or materially affected by a dispute concerning a community scheme may submit an application for adjudication. The entire process is designed to be approachable and as streamlined as possible in order to settle disputes between parties in a user-friendly yet effective format similar to other statutory adjudication bodies like the CCMA and the Rental Housing Tribunal.

The Sectional Titles Schemes Management Act 8 of 2011 provides for set categories that the rules of each scheme are required to regulate; however, it does leave room for specific non-prescribed regulations. The rules that fall outside of these parameters are not as absolute as applicable legislative provisions or other forms of legal policies; however, if one wishes to avoid settling disputes inside of a courtroom, the sensible thing would be to do your research prior to purchasing a unit and make sure that you are aware of the extent of your levy contributions as well as what you may or may not do with your property.
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Foreigner's guide to buying property in South Africa
South Africa has millions of annual foreign visitors who purchase property here. Craig Hutchison says South Africa is reputed to have one of the best deeds registration systems worldwide, with an exceptional degree of accuracy and security of tenure being guaranteed.

Buying property on Auction can be daunting and a slightly emotional experience. But it is also a convenient, effective and transparent process, says MC du Toit, CEO for BidX1 South Africa. He shares the following useful tips for sellers and buyers of both residential and commercial property:

Although there has been some uncertainty about foreign investors being allowed to own property in SA, this has now been dispelled. Foreigners can purchase and own immovable property in South Africa without restriction - non-nationals are subject to the same laws as nationals. The only ineligible people are illegal aliens who are not allowed to own immovable property in SA.

Aida CEO, Braam De Jager, answers questions foreigners might have on buying property in SA
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