South Africa


Legislation Specific to the Housing Industry

The Act introduces a new Constitution for the Republic of South Africa and identifies the housing delivery as a concurrent competence of the provincial and national spheres of government (Schedules 4A and 5A of the Constitution in particular). Section 26 of the Constitution guarantees the right to have access to housing. The State is mandated to take steps to achieve the progressive realization of this right. It provides that where the function in Schedule 4A and 5A can best be administered locally, a provincial or national department could by agreement assign/delegate such function to a municipality provided that the municipality has capacity and resources do follow the function.

The Act provides for the facilitation of a sustainable housing development process. For this purpose, it lays down general principles applicable to housing development in all spheres of government. The Act defines the functions of national, provincial and local governments in respect of housing development and to provide for the establishment of a South African Housing Development Board, the continued existence of provincial boards under the name of provincial housing development boards and the financing of national housing programmes.
The Act outlines the responsibilities of the various spheres of government in relation to housing delivery. The Act further provides for municipalities to be developers in the housing development process. However, this provision neither precludes the Department from being a developer nor from engaging in public-private partnership ventures in housing development.

Act 95 of 1998

The Act makes provision for the protection of housing consumers, and to provide for the establishment and functions of the National Home Builders Registration Council.

Act 27 of 1999

The Act amends the Housing Consumers Protection Measures Act, 1998, so as to rectify certain cross-references, to remove ambiguity in the wording of certain sections, to make further provision for regulating measures, to make better provision for the necessary phased implementation of the Act.

This Act defines the responsibility of government in respect of rental housing property to:

  • create mechanisms to promote the provision of rental housing property;
  • promote access to adequate housing through creating mechanisms to ensure the proper functioning of the rental housing market;
  • make provision for the establishment of Rental Housing Tribunals;
  • define the functions, powers and duties of such Tribunals;
  • ay down general principles governing conflict resolution in the rental housing sector;
  • provide for the facilitation of sound relations between tenants and landlords and for this purpose to lay down general requirements relating to leases;
  • repeal the Rent Control Act, 1976.

The Act establishes the Rental Tribunal to regulate and promote sound relations between landlords and tenants. More importantly the Act seeks to define the government’s responsibilities with regard to rental housing. There is clear requirement to stimulate the rental housing market.

The Act provides for the division of buildings into sections and common property and for the acquisition of separate ownership in sections coupled with joint ownership in common property. The Act further provides for:

  • the control of certain incidents attaching to separate ownership in sections and joint ownership in common property;
  • the transfer of ownership of sections and the registration of sectional mortgage bonds over, and real rights in sections;
  • the conferring and registration of rights in, and the disposal of, common property;
  • the establishment of bodies corporate to control common property and for that purpose to apply the rules; and
  • the establishment of a sectional titles regulation board.

Act No. 65 of 1988

The Act regulates the alienation of certain interests in housing development schemes for retired persons.
Act No. 20 of 1998

The Act amends the Housing Development Schemes for Retired Persons Act, 1988, so as to amend the definition of “housing development scheme”, to provide that land subject to a housing interest may be occupied only by a retired person or the spouse of a retired person, and to repeal section 10 of the Act.

The Act provides for the promotion of uniformity in the law relating to the erection of buildings in the areas of jurisdiction of local authorities, and for the prescribing of building standards.

The Act provides for the establishment of the Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) to implement an integrated strategy for the reconstruction, growth and development of the construction industry. The CIDB Act mandates the Board to establish and maintain a National Register of Contractors and a National Register of Projects. The KwaZulu-Natal Department of Housing will be required to appoint CIDB Registered contractors on all their housing delivery projects, except where the contractors in particular are registered with the NHBRC. All projects above R200 000 (R0.2 million) will also have to be registered with the CIDB. The implementation of the CIDB Register of Contractors and the Register of Projects is the 30th August 2005.