In Part 1 of this newsletter, we looked at overcrowding in a section.
In this newsletter, we will look at how Conduct Rules can be used to address overcrowding in a residential scheme.
While no national legislation exists for this purpose, the Conduct Rules of a body corporate can be invaluable in controlling occupancy thresholds within a scheme. These rules can be amended through a special resolution passed at a meeting of unit owners.
The most workable rule of thumb is that only two persons may occupy a habitable room – a habitable room being a bedroom and not a living room or dining room. Other considerations should also be taken into account such as the square meterage of the section as well as whether the section has its own garden or whether the scheme has a large common garden.
The occupancy limitations must however, be fair. For example, if a young couple buy a one bedroom apartment in an upmarket scheme in Blouberg Strand and then have two children in fairly quick succession, they cannot be ‘kicked out’ of their apartment by the body corporate because the conduct rules have an occupancy limit of two persons per habitable room. This would not only be unreasonable and unequitable but contrary to the constitution.
In Part 3 of this newsletter we will continue to look at ways to prevent overcrowding.