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1 March 2018

Deeds office strike a disaster for KZN economy
South Africa - IolNews
KwaZulu-Natal property sales have come to a standstill after fed up staff at the province’s deeds office downed tools over poor working conditions. The strike has left sales in limbo as property registrations cannot be processed.

The National Education Health and Allied Workers’ Union’s (Nehawu’s) secretary for the Harry Gwala region, Zimasile Giyama, said yesterday that a lack of air conditioning at the busy offices in Pietermaritzburg had triggered a work stoppage two weeks ago.

The Mercury understands a contract for new air conditioning units has since been awarded but the units will only be installed in June.

Seven questions about expropriating land without compensation
South Africa - Moneyweb
The stage is set for the government to push its radical proposal of expropriating land without compensation. On Tuesday, MPs voted in favour of a motion to begin a process to amend Section 25 of the Constitution to allow land expropriation without compensation.

The matter will be referred to the Constitutional Review Committee, which is expected to recommend whether Section 25 should be amended. The committee is expected to report back before August 31, 2018, on whether changes will be made.

What are your rental rights during the water crisis?
South Africa - Rawson
As the Western Cape continues to brace for Day Zero, many questions have been raised about how the water crisis affects the rights of tenants and landlords. Both parties have contractual obligations to fulfil as part of their lease agreements, but what happens when these become impossible because of circumstances outside of our control?

According to Cilna Steyn, Director of SSLR Attorneys and advisor to the Rawson Property Group, a drought of this severity is classified as an Act of God under South African Common Law. As such, both parties are indemnified against claims made by one another for damages suffered as a direct result of the crisis.

“To put it simply, nobody can be held responsible for not fulfilling an obligation if the drought has made that impossible to do,” says Jacqui Savage, National Rentals Business Development Manager for the Rawson Property Group.

Credit and mortgage advances
South Africa - Absa
Household credit and mortgage balances growth low in early 2018

The value of outstanding credit balances in the South African household sector, amounting to R1 548,9 billion at the end of January 2018, showed growth of 3,7% year-on-year (y/y) over the 12-month period. Year-on-year growth in both secured and unsecured credit balances was in January marginally down on that of December 2017.

Household secured credit balances, consisting of mortgage and instalment sales balances, increased by 3,9% y/y to R1 187 billion (76,6% of total household secured credit balances) up to the end of January, with growth of 4,1% y/y recorded up to the end of last year. Mortgage balances growth was on a year-on-year basis unchanged in January from December (see below), whereas growth in instalment sales balances slowed down to 5,4% y/y up to January from 6,5% y/y at the end of last year.
Credit and mortgage advances (Jan 2018)

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