Sectional Title - Alterations

Additions and Alterations in Sectional Title Schemes - Internal changes and converting garages into living spaces

There is a common misconception that internal changes does not need approval from the trustees and the no building plans need to be altered when changed. It is important to understand that changes, such as removing an internal wall might affect the structural integrity of the unit and can therefor result in damages to the roof (common property).

Furthermore, internal changes to bathrooms and kitchens can result in new connections to the sewer system of the complex, that can be detrimental to the body corporate.  Therefor approval from the Body Corporate is required for internal changes.

Garages have been approved on the site development plan, building plans and often on the sectional title plans for the parking of vehicles. These parking spaces form part of the minimum parking requirements of the complex and cannot be converted for any other use (even temporary storage) without negatively impacting on the parking requirements as per Council requirement.

The general notion that vehicles can be parked in front of the now converted garage or even on visitors parking, is legally flawed.  All areas outside of units are common property and cannot be utilized by residents for their own purposes. It must also be considered that if permission is given to one owner to do so, this may by implication suggest that others can do the same, with catastrophic consequences for the complex.

The conversion of garages should at all cost be prevented and conversions done without due procedure should be returned to its original state.


In this very informative Youtube video Abrie Snyman explains the High Court judgment that prevents the conversion of garages and the implications thereof.

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