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Moving house? What 21-day lockdown means for renters and homeowners

30 March 2020 9:25 AM
Tags:
Renting
Property
homeowners
COVID-19
SA 21-day lockdown

No moving is allowed and attorney Marina Constas advises trying to negotiate with landlords and banks for payment arrangements.

We're heading to the end of the month and usually, that means rent is due or when tenants are expected to move out if a lease agreement has reached the end.

But with everybody in lockdown, how does this change the way things operate?

We can't expect moving companies to come and pack up your goods and move it to your new home, especially as we've also blocked off all our provincial borders.

With the whole of South Africa in lockdown to end the spread of Covid-19, how will this affect tenants and landlords?

Refilwe Moloto speaks to Marina Constas, a specialist sectional title attorney at BBM attorneys and looks at the national disaster regulation impact.

Constas first clarifies what the legislation and national disaster regulations say about communal complexes and says it is clear no gyms, swimming pools and other areas may be used.

Regarding moving house, there is no room to negotiate she says.

We are in lockdown at the moment and there would be no movement allowed. It has nothing to do with essential services.

Marina Constas, Specialist sectional title attorney - BBM Attorneys

What happens if you have bought a new home? Are you liable for payments even if you have not yet taken occupation due to the lockdown?

As soon as that unit is registered in your name you would be liable for that bond payment - unless the bank decided to make a special arrangement and puts that out into the public.

Marina Constas, Specialist sectional title attorney - BBM Attorneys

And rentals?

Yes, you would be liable for the rent.

Marina Constas, Specialist sectional title attorney - BBM Attorneys

Chat to your landlord and possibly seek some flexibility in payment, especially if you are in a situation where you have got to pay a new rental for 1 April, and now you are stuck in your old rental property and you are liable for that.

Marina Constas, Specialist sectional title attorney - BBM Attorneys

It's a matter of trying to negotiate it and looking at proper payment arrangements.

Marina Constas, Specialist sectional title attorney - BBM Attorneys

What rights do we have in this situation?

I would recommend that everything is done in writing be that to banks or landlords.

Marina Constas, Specialist sectional title attorney - BBM Attorneys

She says levies are a separate issue and need to be discussed with the body corporate and managed via an ordinary resolution.

Listen to the interview below:

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30 March 2020 9:25 AM
Tags:
Renting
Property
homeowners
COVID-19
SA 21-day lockdown

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