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Advice from the Experts - Common Property Part 1

Continuing with our Advice from the Experts series, we will over the next few newsletter be looking at the Common Property of a sectional title scheme. Common property in a sectional title scheme includes all areas other than those designated as sections on the sectional plan. In other words everything outside the section such as driveways, pavements, fences, gates, communal gardens and club houses all form part of the common property. According to the Sectional Title Schemes Management Act (STSMA), common property falls into 3 main areas:

  • The land in the scheme;

  • Those parts of the building or buildings that are not included in a section (a section is the area inside a unit between the walls including the ceiling, floor, doors and windows) and;

  • Any extra land that the body corporate decides to buy to increase the common property size (after the written consent of all its members have been obtained).

Common property is therefore owned by all members of the body corporate in undivided shares according to the participation quota of their respective sections. In simple terms, the size of the section determines the size of the share that the unit owner holds in the common property. Because it is an “undivided share” no one can request the land on which the scheme is built, or any other parts of the common property be divided or separated. This is simply not possible from a practical or legal point of view. Article courtesy of Marina Constas and Karen Bleijs Demystifying Sectional Title In Part 2 of this newsletter we will look at Minor alterations to Common Property - Trustee Consent.

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