Complex Living and Rules

It would seem that the future of residential living in South Africa lies in complexes. As a result of this, we would like to do a short write up on some points relevant on this topic that have come across our desks recently.

We have seen an upturn in the developments of complexes from our developers as well as an attraction from homeowners to want to stay in a complex/estate based on the assumed security that comes with it.

What a lot of people don’t take into consideration is everything that comes with complex living.

We are referring to:

  1. Abiding by rules of the complex;
  2. Having to pay levies for the upkeep of the complex;
  3. Having to put up with up close and personal neighbours.

Regarding point 1 above, please make sure that, should you be considering moving into a complex, you obtain a copy of the conduct/management rules of the complex.

We have seen many matters that a dispute arises based on a new owner not knowing about the restrictions within a complex and then being unhappy when they are imposed on him/her.

Regarding point 2 above, we would advise that before you purchase a property within a complex that you become familiar with the levies imposed within the complex. For those of you that don’t know what levies are, they can be defined simply as the sum of money each owner has to pay each month to the body corporate or Homeowners Association for the upkeep of the common property within the complex.

Another point on this is that we would suggest you find out who accounts to the owners for the levies so as to make sure you receive the relevant invoices. Non-payment often results in penalties being levied.

Regarding point 3 above, complex living requires patience and a little bit of give and take on everyone’s part. If you are not willing to find middle ground in most circumstances, then you may likely find yourself involved with uncomfortable situations with your neighbours.

To surmise, we would strongly suggest that you do your homework when considering a move into a complex. Complex living can be amazing but also frustrating if you are not careful.

Should you feel unsure about anything when considering a move into a complex you are welcome to contact us for information on 011 897 1900 or

This offer extends to current owners, potential owners, managing agents, body corporates and homeowner associations. It is important to know that due process is followed to ensure a harmonious living experience.

Article contributed by Kenny Smith