Alternative strategies to protect the existing view from a property
CITATION: Kriek, C.A. & Van Der Walt, A.J. 2016. Alternative strategies to protect the existing view from a property. Journal of South African Law / Tydskrif vir die Suid-Afrikaanse Reg, 2016(1):20-44.
The original publication is available at https://journals.co.za/content/journal/jlc_tsar
In terms of the common law, a South African property owner does not have an inherent right to the existing view from her property over adjoining properties, although the existing view from her property can be protected with a servitude that prevents or restricts building works on adjoining land. Furthermore, there are (weak and inconclusive) indications that the view from a specific property may be protected as an inherent part of landownership in exceptional circumstances, where the view forms an integral part of the use and enjoyment of the property and where the protection of that view was an important consideration in the development of land in that area. Apart from these rather limited circumstances, landowners can generally not claim an inherent right, as part of their ownership, to uphold the undisturbed prospect from their land against the wish of neighbouring owners to develop and build on their land.