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What you should know about sectional title plans

While sectional title plans look very simple in design, it is important to understand the meaning and implications of the lines on the plans. The plans further provide essential information that is required to calculate accurate participation quotas (PQ) as it indicates the size in square meters of each section in the scheme.

In this blog post, we consider the information on sectional title plans and how to use it, along with the prerequisites around updating or amending sectional title plans.

What information can be found on the sectional title plans?

The plans provide a host of information. Here is a list of what can be found on the plans:

  • The registered name, physical address and erf number on which the scheme was developed.
  • The name of the local authority or municipality where the scheme is registered.
  • The SS number – the unique registration number for the scheme preceded with the two letters ‘SS’, i.e., SS 204/1999. In this example the scheme number is 204 and was registered for the first time in 1999.
  • A description of the number of buildings in the development.
  • The name and details of the professional land surveyor who attended to the land surveying.
  • A date stamp indicating when the local authority approved the plans and the Surveyor General approved the scheme plans.
  • A layout of the sections in the scheme, complete with section numbers.
  • The square meterage of each section as well as a schedule indicating the participation quota (PQ) allocated to each section.
  • If exclusive use areas (EUAs) have been allocated to certain sections and registered as real rights, then these areas with its square meters will be indicated on the plans. Note that EUAs do not form art of the PQ calculation of the scheme.
  • The common property which will be shown as ‘CP’ on the plans.

 

Where are the plans kept?

The sectional title plans can be found with the managing agent and at the Deeds Office. With the creation of the Community Schemes Ombud Service (CSOS) in 2016, it was decided that all plans will be transferred from the Deeds Office to the respective regional offices of CSOS. This may still be in process of being done.

When are the plans updated or amended?

The plans must be updated in the following cases:

  • When a section is extended to create a bigger section.
  • When the scheme is extended with the addition of new sections.
  • When sections are eliminated or removed, i.e. when store rooms registered as sections are demolished.
  • When exclusive use areas registered as real rights are added or removed from the scheme.
  • When common property is sold to allow for additional sections to be created.
  • When there is a consolidation of sections.

Certain processes need to be followed before the plans can be updated or amended. When this happens a professional land surveyor must be appointed to attend to the measurements, the amendment of the plans and submission to the Surveyor General office for approval.

Use for the sectional title plans

Sectional title plans are critical in identifying each section, and confirming the square meterage and PQ value of each section. This information is used to calculate levies, special levies and maintenance reserve levies.

Trustees and managing agents rely on the plans whenever they need to deal with issues relating to maintenance – specifically to establish responsibility for repairs – and levy calculations. Estate agents rely on these plans to confirm the position, the square meters and PQ values of the section they are trying to sell.

Conclusion

The sectional title plans play an important role in the management of a sectional title scheme.

Owners are entitled to ask for, and keep, copies of the plans for their records. An up-to-date set of plans must be available for scrutiny at the scheme’s AGM. Ultimately, the trustees must ensure that the plans are always updated, especially when extension of sections are planned, or when real right exclusive use areas are added or removed from the scheme.