A critical analysis of the financial and social obligations imposed on sectional owners in sectional title schemes, as well as their enforcement

Booysen, Juann (2014-04)

Thesis (LLD)--Stellenbosch University, 2012

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Over the years sectional ownership satisfied the psychological need of many South Africans to acquire home-ownership and it is currently estimated that there are more than 780 000 sectional title units throughout South Africa. The concept of sectional ownership consists of three elements, namely individual ownership of a section (residential or commercial); joint ownership of the common parts of the sectional title scheme and membership of the body corporate which governs the sectional title community. Sectional ownership is therefore a unique statutory institution with its own characteristics. An imperative of every sectional title scheme is to strive for financial stability, happiness and harmony in an intensified, diverse community where the objects of ownership, the individual units, are physically interdependent. The Sectional Titles Act 95 of 1986, as amended, therefore imposes numerous financial and social obligations on sectional owners. These obligations require each owner to give up a certain degree of freedom that he might otherwise enjoy in separate, privately owned property. Ultimately the success of a sectional title scheme will depend upon the necessary co-operation and support of its members for compliance with these obligations. Since non-compliance can destroy the financial stability and social harmony in a sectional title scheme, effective procedures for the enforcement of these financial and social obligations are essential. Accordingly, effective sanctions are a sine qua non for a financially viable and socially successful sectional title scheme. This thesis provides a critical analysis of the various financial and social obligations that are imposed on sectional owners, as well as the measures available for their enforcement. It will become evident that the sanctions in the South African sectional title legislation for non-compliance with these obligations are conspicuously few and far between. It is generally accepted that the Sectional Titles Act 95 of 1986 does not have sharp enough „teeth‟ to deal effectively with the non-compliance of these obligations. Consequently, the thesis will also focus on sanctions that are used in foreign jurisdictions to enforce sectional owners‟ financial and social obligations, with the aim to identify sanctions that may be adopted in the South African context to render the enforcement of these obligations more efficient and effective. In conclusion it will be recommended that the only manner in which financial stability and social harmony can be restored in a troubled sectional title scheme is to introduce legislation which allows the body corporate as a last resort to exclude a persistent offender who makes it impossible for the other sectional owners to share the sectional owners‟ community with him or her temporarily from this community.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Met die verloop van tyd sedert die eerste deeltitelwetgewing in 1971 in Suid Afrika ingevoer is, het deeleiendom die droom van menige Suid-Afrikaners verwesenlik om eiendomsreg van „n eie woning te verkry. Huidige statistieke dui daarop dat daar meer as 780 000 deeltiteleenhede in Suid Afrika is. Drie elemente word in die begrip „deeleiendom‟ saamgevat, naamlik individuele eiendomsreg van „n deel (residensiëel of kommersiëel), mede-eindomsreg van die gemeenskaplike gedeeltes van „n skema en lidmaatskap van „n regspersoon. Deeleiendom is dus „n unieke statutêre instelling met sy eie ongewone karaktertrekke. Die belangrikste doelwit van elke deeltitelskema is om finansiële stabiliteit, geluk en harmonie in „n geϊntensifeerde, diverse gemeenskap waar individuele eiendomseenhede, fisies interafhanklik is, te bewerkstellig. Die Wet op Deeltitels 95 van 1986, soos gewysig, onderwerp deeleienaars daarom aan verskeie finansiële en sosiale verpligtinge wat meebring dat elke deeleienaar „n sekere mate van vryheid moet prys gee wat hy andersins sou geniet het as hy eienaar was van „n huis op „n private erf. Die uiteindelike sukses van „n deeltitelskema is grotendeels afhanklik van die samewerking en ondersteuning van sy lede wat betref die nakoming van hierdie verpligtinge. Omdat nie-nakoming die finansiële stabiliteit en sosiale harmonie kan versteur word doeltreffende maatreëls vereis vir die afdwinging van hierdie finansiële en sosiale verpligtinge. „n Deeltitelskema kan slegs met sukses bestuur word indien op doeltreffende sanksies gesteun kan word. Hierdie tesis fokus op „n kritiese analise van die verskeie finansiële en sosiale verpligtinge waaraan deeleienaars onderhewig is, en die maatreëls wat aangewend kan word om hierdie verpligtinge af te dwing. Daar sal aangetoon word dat die sanksies in die Suid-Afrikaanse deeltitelwetgewing vir die nie-nakoming van hierdie verpligtinge gans te min, en boonop uiters ondoeltreffend is. Daarom word algemeen aanvaar dat die „tande‟ van die Wet op Deeltitels 95 van 1986 nie skerp genoeg is om die nie-nakoming van hierdie verpligtinge doeltreffend te straf nie. Gevolglik sal die tesis ook fokus op sanksies wat in buitelandse regstelsels aangewend word om die finansiële en sosiale verpligtinge van deeleienaars af te dwing. Die oogmerk hiermee is om buitelandse sanksies te identifiseer wat met vrug in die Suid-Afrikaanse konteks aangewend kan word ten einde die nie-nakoming van hierdie verpligtinge doeltreffend hok te slaan. Ter afsluiting sal voorgestel word dat finansiële stabiliteit en sosiale harmonie in „n erg ontwrigte deeltitelskema slegs herstel kan word indien wetgewing aangeneem word wat die regspersoon toelaat om „n deeleienaar wat ondanks waarskuwings dit vir mede-deeleienaars onmoontlik maak om saam met hom of haar in dieselfde deeleiendomsgemeenskap te leef tydelik van die skema te verwyder.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/86255
This item appears in the following collections: