New changes ushered in the new year for the Sectional Titles Act

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Category: Legal and Advisory

New changes ushered in the new year for the Sectional Titles Act

President Cyril Ramaphosa signed the Sectional Titles Amendment Act 13 of 2022 into law on 22 December 2022. The Act was published in the Government Gazette on 5 January 2023, and also came into effect on that date. Click here to access the new version of the Sectional Titles Act 95 of 1986 (“the STA”), with all of the amendments.

The purpose of this Act is to, among other provisions, amend certain definitions found in the STA, to include not only owners but also occupiers of sections. For example, the definition of exclusive use area now contemplates that it is a part of the common property allocated for the exclusive use of either, an owner or owners, or an occupant or occupants recognised by law. This is a practical and much-needed amendment for the owner may not be enjoying the exclusive use area, because their tenant is enjoying it under a lease agreement (for example, a parking bay).

Some of the other amendments include:

  • that the developer must answer questions put to the developer by lessees, and by the agents of the lessees;
  • the amendment of sectional plans in respect of exclusive use areas;
  • the amendment and cancellation of a sectional plan upon an order of court;
  • the introduction of a requirement for the registrar of deeds to note the lapsing of a real right of extension held by a developer in terms of s 25 of the STA on the title deed of the right so reserved, such as in cases where the developer no longer exists;
  • the inclusion of a restriction against the registration of a lease of part of the common property subject to the rights of an owner of a section thereon, and subject to the rights of the holders of registered real rights of extension or rights of exclusive use of parts of the common property, and with their written consent;
  • in relation to the cancellation of a mortgaged section, mortgaged exclusive use area and a real right of extension;
  • to allow for the developer to submit a plan for subdivision or consolidation to the Surveyor-General for approval to subdivide, consolidate and to extend a section, prior to the establishment of a body corporate;
  • to require that the developer must disclose to the purchaser of a property, if no body corporate has been established yet, and prior to registration in the name of the purchaser, that the developer wishes to register a sectional plan of subdivision or consolidation of a section (as the case may be), or to extend the boundaries to floor areas of their section, and the consequences if this is not disclosed in the deed of alienation (sale agreement);
  • to provide for replacement documentation to be filed in the case of loss or destruction of that documentation;
  • to provide for amendments to provisions relation to the extension of a scheme such as where land is purchased or acquired by the developer to extend the common property, which must also be disclosed to purchasers by the developer in the deed of alienation;
  • to amend the provisions relating to participation quotas of sections so that it refers to s 17 of the Sectional Titles Schemes Management Act and not the repealed s 48 of the STA; and
  • to regulate the membership of the sectional titles regulations board.

Chief Legal Officer of our Group, Fausto Di Palma unpacks some of the implications of this Act for community schemes and other stakeholders in more detail in this article:

STS team Fausto di Palma


Chief Legal Officer

Fausto Di Palma, BCOM LLB, Rhodes University, Chief Legal Officer of Sectional Title Solutions (Pty) Ltd. Fausto heads up the STS Group’s Legal Team and carries a wealth of knowledge and experience concerning community scheme and property legislation and case law.