A reader has asked the Property Poser expert for a comparison between property ownership where the provisions of the legislation relating to sectional titles are applicable and where those of a homeowners’ association (HOA) apply.
Sean Radue of Radue Attorneys in Port Elizabeth says an HOA is typically found in so-called cluster housing.
“This is when a development is done on a piece of land with a shared, privately owned open space for amenities. Each owner obtains a separate title deed for his or her piece of land and there is a joint right of use of the infrastructure and common facilities.”
Radue says the ownership of such facilities vests in the HOA.
“Often, the HOA is operated in the form of a non-profit company and an elected executive committee is responsible for its day-to-day running.”
He says the general meeting of owners elects the members to that committee and makes decisions by means of resolutions taken at general meetings.
“The association’s constitution sets out the guidelines for the management, operation and maintenance of the common property. This usually includes landscaping, recreation facilities, private streets and driveways, outdoor lighting, and communal structures and fences.”
Radue says this constitution will also set out the way in which any part thereof may be amended, usually at a special general meeting or at the annual general meeting.
“The concept ‘sectional title’ on the other hand describes the separate ownership of units or sections within a complex or development.