Apartment Home Inspections
Pricing for HouseCheck apartment inspections is influenced by the fact that almost all apartments and townhouse units in South Africa form part of a Sectional Title or other similar group ownership scheme.
Sectional title means that the buyer or owner of a sectional title unit is usually only responsible for the maintenance of the interiors of the unit.
The body corporate, which is a corporate entity representing all the unit owners in the scheme, is responsible for maintenance of the exteriors of each unit. This usually means that the maintenance of roofs, outside walls, balconies, driveways, parking areas and all other common property, is the responsibility of the body corporate.
The body corporate, which is governed by trustees elected by the unit owners, is financed through pro rata monthly levies payable by each unit owner.
The Sectional Title Schemes Management Act now legally compels trustees of body corporates to compile and maintain a rolling 10-year, fully funded, maintenance plan for all areas of the common property. This plan is supposed to be approved by the unit owners at each annual general meeting and then verified by the auditors of the scheme..
In reality, many trustees of body corporates do not fully comply with the legal requirement to have a proper, fully-funded, 10-year plan, in order to maintain the common property.
As a result many sectional title schemes are not well maintained and this impacts on the property values for each sectional title unit. In the absence of a 10-year plan, when repairs and maintenance becomes unavoidable, unit owners are often faced with an unaffordable special levy in order to fund emergency repairs.
The HouseCheck inspection service to people buying apartments and townhouse units in the sectional title scheme is twofold:
- HouseCheck will provide a detailed inspection report, for a prospective purchaser or seller, of the interiors of the sectional title unit. HouseCheck will also usually provide their client with a general opinion of the observed state of maintenance of the common property. Prospective purchasers are advised, as a condition of the purchase, to conduct a due diligence and view the body corporate’s 10-year maintenance plan and the audited financial statements of the scheme.
- HouseCheck has developed inspection and reporting systems which empower trustees of body corporates to fulfil their legal obligations by commissioning HouseCheck to inspect the common property and to prepare a 10-year maintenance action plan (MAP report). The HouseCheck MAP analyses the impact of the cost of required maintenance on individual unit levies. The HouseCheck MAP is a flexible and practical plan which enables trustees and unit owners to prioritize repairs in the light of affordability.