Exclusive Use – Section 27 and 27A of the Sectional Title Act

What is it?

  • Usually pertaining to “private” garden areas, garages, carports, open parking bays, storerooms, etc.
  • A part of Common Property for the exclusive use by the owner or owners of one or more sections.

Why should this be done?

  • As a result of these areas being Common Property, a unanimous approval must be obtained from owners to change or improve.
  • Being Common Property, the Body Corporate is responsible for maintaining such – affecting the increase in levies.
  • If Exclusive Use Rights are registered, maintenance becomes the responsibility of the owner.
  • Having Exclusive Use Rights registered, will increase the value of your investment, avoiding the uncertainty of exactly what you own or entitled to.
  • Rules still apply to Exclusive Use Rights, but Trustees then have the authority to approve improvements and not per unanimous owners’ approval, which is very difficult to obtain.

How can this be done?

  • The Sectional Titles Act, Act 95 of 1986, per Section 27 describes a formal process of having Exclusive Use Rights registered:
  • Can only be registered by way of a unanimous resolution of owners.
  • Architect or Land Surveyor to be appointed.
  • Costs excessively high and more often not affordable for Body Corporate.
  • In 1997 an easier, more affordable option was introduced to have Exclusive Use Rights registered, namely Section 27A:
  • To be included in either the Management Rules (unanimous resolution required, but recommended) or Conduct Rules (special resolution required, not recommended).
  • Draftsman appointed to submit a layout plan on scale, including a schedule indicating to which member each such part is allocated.
  • Rules to be created to manage use and enjoyment of Exclusive Use Rights.

Why now?

  • When the new Act comes into use (Sectional Titles Schemes Management Act, Act 8 of 2011, expected to come into effect soon …), Section 27A is repealed and will leave Body Corporates with only option namely Section 27 (the expensive, formal way) of having Exclusive Use Rights registered.