About Me

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I am a qualified Attorney. I specialise in Property Law, Commercial Law, Corporate Law and Trusts.
 
Please visit our website at www.prop-law.co.za for more details.
 
I am an elected Committee Member of the Property Committee of the Association of Pretoria Attorneys and through my involvement, I like to ensure that I am constantly at the "sharp-end" of Conveyancing Practice.

I am the elected Chairman on the Gauteng Council of SAPOA. The South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) is the biggest and most influential institution in the property industry. SAPOA members control about 90% of commercial property in SA, with a combined portfolio in excess of R150 Billion (about $22 Billion). I am also on the National Council and the National Legal Committee of SAPOA.
 
Member of the Institute of Directors South Africa and Member of the Sirdar Governance Panel.

30 September 2014

Attacq, still on the prowl for development opportunities

Attacq, still on the prowl for development opportunities

Still bullish in the local and international market.

A strong development pipeline and diversification strategy in Africa and international markets buoyed Attacq to report an increase in its net asset value per share of 24% to R14.77 for the year ended June 2013.

Attacq, with a market capitalisation of over R14 billion, secured full ownership of its local retail assets during the financial period under review. This includes super regional centres of MooiRivier Mall, the Eikestad Mall Precinct, Brooklyn Mall and Garden Route Mall.

Legality of CTICC construction scrutinised

Oh Wow ......... I absolutely LOVE a good discussion on Servitudes!

Gareth Shepperson
Commercial and Property Attorney
















Legality of CTICC construction scrutinised

Although construction on the R832 million expansion of the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) is well under way, defective advertising of the proposed expropriation of public servitudes has put the legality of its building processes under scrutiny.


Objectors are calling for a halt to construction work on the CTICC until all legal obstacles are removed and a public participation process is finalised.
It is understood that objectors are concerned that building activity has continued, despite the existing planning restrictions, and there has been a call for all building work to stop to remove legal obstacles and finalise public participation processes.

The ACDP has asked why the city's plans to take away the public access use of the land in Roggebaai to allow for the expansion of the CTICC were so poorly advertised.

Court grants Pick n Pay exclusive property lease

Court grants Pick n Pay exclusive property lease

Massstores has been interdicted by the high court from interfering with the contractual relationship between Pick n Pay and listed property fund Hyprop by operating a general food supermarket at the CapeGate Shopping Centre in Brackenfell in Cape Town.

In a judgment handed down in the Gauteng Provincial Division of the High Court sitting in Pretoria on Friday, Judge Johan Louw said Pick n Pay had succeeded in proving that it was entitled to a final interdict against Masstores, a division of listed retailer Massmart.

Judge Louw agreed with a submission by David Unterhalter, counsel for Pick n Pay, that a clause in Pick n Pay's lease operated to prevent Masstores from combining its existing Game general merchandise business with the business of a general food supermarket that sold both perishable and nonperishable foods.

'Check property documents carefully before signing'

IT IS ALWAYS A SOURCE OF THE UTMOST ASTONISHMENT that when people enter into the single biggest transaction of their lives (the purchase of their home) that they fail to seek out independent specialist legal advice!

It is the custom in SA that the Seller appoints the transferring attorney and the Buyer pays the transfer costs. Although the transferring attorney (conveyancer) represents all parties in giving effect to the Deed of Sale, it is not his/her duty to advise the Buyer prior to signing the Deed of Sale.  It is therefore incumbent upon the Buyer to seek independent specialist legal advice PRIOR TO signing.  In my experience, that virtually never happens.

Gareth Shepperson
Commercial and Property Attorney














'Check property documents carefully before signing'

Many property buyers want to act quickly when purchasing a home and might sign purchase documentation without having read it carefully.

They must, however, think things through carefully, take time to read the documentation and sign later, says Annette Evans, regional general manager of the Institute of Estate Agents, Western Cape.

Evans says that queries have come in from members of the public with regard to their contracts, where things such as the suspensive conditions should have been clarified in the offer to purchase and weren't. In one particular case, the property that the buyer was meant to sell, which was listed as a suspensive condition was not mentioned in the offer to purchase.

29 September 2014

Mellville shipping container shopping centre gets go-ahead

Mellville shipping container shopping centre gets go-ahead

The new container shopping centre in Melville is set to become a reality after the city approved the site development plan.


What was Faan Smit Park is to become 27boxes, a design and retail centre in the middle of Melville.
The development, in the Faan Smit Park west of 7th Street, will become South Africa's first shopping centre made of shipping containers.

The park will be known as 27boxes. Its design is planned to reflect the vibrant, trendy and somewhat bohemian character that made Melville famous, transforming it into a shopping centre and parkland.

The development will provide 200 parking bays.

Residential market on the mend

Residential market on the mend

Estate agencies report robust show days and short duration of properties on sale.

Shorter duration of properties being on sale, robust show-day attendance and stock shortages fuelling a surge in residential property prices: could this spell a recovery for the residential market?

The market is in a significantly better mood since the wrath of the global financial crisis in 2007 – where demand slowed and house price growth depressed.

But the turbulent tide seems to have turned for the better and the market seems to be picking up.

“In 2014 the market is significantly better. We call this a balanced market, there are a good number of buyers and sellers,” says Seeff chairman Samuel Seeff.

25 September 2014

At expiry, a property lease changes

At expiry, a property lease changes

When a tenant continues to occupy the dwelling after the fixed period lease ends, the occupation becomes a monthly periodic lease.

Section 5 of the Rental Housing Act 50 of 1999 relates to the provisions of leases and subsection 5 deals with an expired lease.

According to this paragraph, if the tenant remains in the dwelling, with the express or tacit consent of the landlord, a periodic lease is created.

In the absence of a further written lease, parties are bound by the same terms and conditions of the expired lease, except that at least one month's written notice must be given of the intention to terminate the lease.

22 September 2014

Pickvest directors acted dishonestly – FSB

Pickvest directors acted dishonestly – FSB

Appeal dismissal raises serious questions.

Directors of property syndication promoter Pickvest have launched an application in the Pretoria High Court to have an incriminating determination by the Financial Services Board (FSB) reviewed and set aside.

The decision, which was made in February by the FSB’s Appeal Board, found that Pickvest’s directors acted dishonestly and without the care, skill and diligence expected of financial services providers (FSP) under the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services (FAIS) Act.

This formed the basis of the Appeal Board’s dismissal of Pickvest’s appeal against an April 2013 decision by the board’s Registrar of Financial Services Providers to have its FSP licence withdrawn.

19 September 2014

Municipal approvals delay property development

Municipal approvals delay property development

Some projects just no longer viable: some approvals take up to three years.

Huge contributions to bulk services and delays in municipal approvals seriously hamper commercial property development in South Africa, says Harry Gey van Pittius, chairperson of the South African Affordable Residential Developers Association (Saarda).

The association hopes to discuss the issue in the near future with Lindiwe Sisulu, Minister of Housing, but her mandate does not include local government, which makes it difficult for her to intervene, Gey van Pittius said.

Municipalities don’t have the necessary skills, especially engineers and building inspectors and decision-making has been centralised at political level, he says.

Sharemax complaints surge after Bam determination

Sharemax complaints surge after Bam determination

Sars applies for liquidation of Sharemax and termination of the business rescue process.

The South African Revenue Service (Sars) has applied for the liquidation of Sharemax Investments and for the business rescue proceedings of the company to be terminated.
This follows a lengthy tug of war since 2012 between Sars and the directors of Sharemax and the Nova Group of Companies for the payment of R15.7 million of outstanding taxes.
Sars filed the application in June 2014, as it does not foresee the company being able to pay the debt.
Sars names, amongst others, business practitioner Dawie van der Merwe, former Sharemax directors Willie Botha, André Brand, Dominique Haese, as well as Nova Property Group chairman Connie Myburgh as respondents.
 
Affidavit
In a strongly worded affidavit Elle-Sarah Rossato contends on behalf of Sars that that the sole reason for placing Sharemax Investments into business rescue was to abuse the mechanism prescribed by the Company’s Act not to pay creditors.
“The inescapable inference is that creditors of Sharemax Investments were misled with a promise that R40 million would be coming their way, whilst the controllers of the first respondent had already decided to abuse the Company’s Act business rescue provisions.”
The R40 million refers to the amount earmarked to be paid to Sharemax Investments shortly after the restructuring investments, and was to be used to pay creditors.

18 September 2014

Durban beachfront's largest property development takes shape

Durban beachfront's largest property development takes shape



A R1.8 billion expansion of Durban's landmark Suncoast Casino has been given the nod, clearing the way for a doubling of the existing complex.

An artist's impression of the beachfront facades.
The project by Tsogo Sun will be the biggest single investment in the history of the beachfront and will take three years to complete.

All the necessary regulatory approvals are in place, now allowing detailed planning.

This follows the company's R220 million upgrade of the relaunched Southern Sun Elangeni and Maharani Hotels into one complex last year, with another R100m face-lift under way at the hospitality group's 33-year-old Marine Parade Garden Court.

The Suncoast expansion plan had to get the nod for an amendment to the casino licence conditions from the KZN Gaming and Betting Board - and the provincial government - as well as an amendment to the Integrated Development Plan for the precinct from the eThekwini Municipality

In terms of the application approved by the gaming board, Tsogo Sun will make R100m available to be spent on charitable or social infrastructural developments in the province.

A bird's eye view of the proposed project.
The attraction, which opened its doors almost 12 years ago, has 8million visitors a year and the expansion became necessary, as 'we have been at capacity for some time', said Mike Dowsley, the executive director of Suncoast Casino, Hotels and Entertainment, as it is now called.

Optimism rises with house building activity

Optimism rises with house building activity

A sharp rise in residential building activity has resulted in improved confidence in the industry in the third quarter.

The FNB/Bureau for Economic Research (BER) building confidence index released yesterday revealed that confidence in the industry had improved to 45 index points on a 100-point scale in the third quarter.

The index slumped 11 points to 41 in the second quarter after breaching the key 50-point mark in the first quarter.

John Loos, a property economist at FNB, said yesterday that although the index remained below the key 50 mark, it did suggest that conditions in the building sector had improved.