The City urged residents to be careful when buying a State-subsidised dwelling, commonly referred to as an RDP house, as there were restrictions on the sale of these houses, especially within the first few years following the acquisition of the property by beneficiaries.
In accordance with the National Housing Act, the sale of an RDP house was forbidden for eight years after the beneficiary had acquired the house, unless the Western Cape Government had approved the sale.
The City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Human Settlements, Benedicta van Minnen, said: “Illegal sales are unfortunately taking place outside of the official Deeds Office process of transfer and registration of title. This is happening without the City or the relevant authority being involved. Every so often we receive heartbreaking reports of a buyer who has paid money for an RDP house which it turns out may not be sold as it is in the prohibited period.
“Only properties that are outside of the eight-year pre-emptive restriction period can be sold or advertised for selling legally.
“I urge those who receive subsidised housing to view their home as a great asset. To this end, the City hosts educational sessions with its beneficiaries to explain the benefit of owning and retaining an asset.
“We understand that the majority of our beneficiaries were prevented from owning property under the apartheid regime. As a City, we therefore dedicate significant resources to the education of beneficiaries of subsidised housing – in terms of financial management, basic legal advice, general home maintenance and repairs, and establishing food gardens to increase food security,” Van Minnen said.
“I would advise residents that if you are looking into buying an RDP house, you make sure that the property is not subject to the restrictive conditions and, if in doubt, approach your local housing office or the Western Cape Government’s Housing Tribunal for more information,” added Van Minnen.