Buyers should check plans in sectional title schemes before signing

When a buyer is interested in a particular unit in a sectional title scheme, he will often inspect the unit, ask the agent if there is parking or a garage and possibly ask about the amenities offered within the scheme, and accept the answers given in good faith.
“What happens, however, if there are slight discrepancies in what the buyer thinks he is buying and what is laid out in the sectional plan?” says Mandi Hanekom, operations manager of sectional title finance company Propell.
The sectional plan is the information pertaining to sections and their numbers as well as the common property and exclusive use areas. There will be two sheets within this plan, the Title Sheet and the Block Plan.
The Title Sheet states the scheme’s name, its location, the deeds registry and surveyor general numbers and identifies the buildings. It should also list the exclusive use areas and whether the developer reserved the right to add to the scheme in the future. The second sheet is the Block Plan, which will indicate the general layout of the scheme, where the boundaries are and where the exclusive use areas are. There might also be floor plan sheets, which will show each section within the scheme and parts of sections as well as common property, such as walkways, stairwells, service areas or parking bays. The last is the sheet that lists the participation quota schedule – this is an important sheet as it determines each owner’s share of the levies.
It is important for buyers to ask to see whether the plan sheets correspond with the unit number they are buying, as it has been known to happen that there can be mistakes in the unit numbers and corresponding exclusive use areas or parking bays and garaging. These mistakes can creep in when amendments were made to sections or plans without amending all the corresponding paperwork, said Hanekom.
If there have been physical changes made to any units in the scheme, the sectional plan must be amended accordingly. Because changes to sections are often owner driven, it is the owner’s responsibility to get the scheme authorisation, deal with the municipality, appoint someone to prepare and submit the amended plan and appoint a conveyancer to deal with the registration of the newly approved plan – this is possibly why some changes might not correspond with what is on paper, she said.
Buyers should also check whether the developer has reserved the right to develop further in the future, as what they might think is a large open green area, might become additional units later, or they might think that the scheme is fully established to find that there will be building disruptions in the near future.
It is wise to check (and double check) documents to prove that areas do in fact belong to the unit being sold before signing an offer to purchase, said Hanekom.

  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
Characters remaining

    Latest Property News
    • 20 Apr 2018
      Whenever changes in the political ecosystem of a traditional property market create uncertainty, smart investors begin to look elsewhere for new opportunities. Property experts at IP Global have analysed the trends and crunched the numbers to find new markets to explore in Europe and the United States.
    • 20 Apr 2018
      Energy and water self-sufficiency are increasingly important factors in home buyers’ choice of property – especially in Cape Town where the extreme drought of the past few years has made municipal supply costly as well as uncertain.
    • 19 Apr 2018
      During the last decade, rampant development has progressively transformed Cape Town’s property landscape with densification being the order of the day, but there are still one or two hidden gems like Scarborough which have retained their original character, offering an inimitable lifestyle and an attractive investment opportunity.
    • 19 Apr 2018
      The rental market is a cut-throat sector of the real estate market that waits for nobody. According to Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, first-time renters need to be fully prepared before they even start the process of looking for a place to rent in order to avoid the disappointment of losing out on their ideal property.
    • 19 Apr 2018
      Choosing to buy your first home instead of continuing to rent is a big decision that will usually take some time to put into action, but the sooner you can save up a sizeable deposit, the closer you will be to reaching your goal.
    • 18 Apr 2018
      Selling your home is no small task and as you will quickly find out, there are a lot of misconceptions about the process. Gerhard van der Linde, Seeff's MD in Pretoria East lists the top 5 misconceptions when you are selling your home.
    • 18 Apr 2018
      The Cape Town municipality is now installing water-management devices at properties that have been non-compliant with the new level 5 water restrictions and there are talks of fines between R5,000 and R10,000 for households that use too much water.
    • 17 Apr 2018
      The recent interest rate cut has stoked the coals in the first-time buyer’s market. At least for the next two months until the next interest rate announcement, homeowners are guaranteed lower monthly instalments than in the previous quarter. But, is it wise to take out a 100% bond just to enter the property market while interest rates are low?
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    Share this Page

    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    Connect with us