Sectional Titles

Picking itself up

Most people are aware that the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB) plans to introduce compulsory education for estate agents towards the middle of this year. This is a positive step towards professionalising an industry well known for its unprofessional conduct. According to the Estate Agency Affairs Act of 1976, those who manage sectional title property for a fee are defined as estate agents and the EAAB has made provision for these managing agents in their new training program.

While the real estate industry awaits professionalisation, over the past two years managing agents have begun professionalising themselves and the sectional title scheme management industry through education. With 450 university-certified sectional title scheme managers throughout the country, sectional title property owners can now distinguish between qualified and unqualified professionals to manage their most important asset. Gerhard Jooste, chairman of the National Association of Managing Agents (NAMA), quotes "The industry has come a long way both in growth and education. The future looks very bright and positive. The UCT Sectional Title Management Course has given our drive towards professionalism new momentum. Everyone involved will benefit."

The University of Cape Town's Faculty of Law, NAMA, and Paddocks, a specialist sectional title firm, introduced the UCT Sectional Title Scheme Management Course in December 2005, which is now considered to be the industry benchmark course. This six-month course is presented via distance learning. This certification is also accredited by the EAAB as a specialist program in sectional title scheme management, which means that passing students won't have to repeat their specialist education when the board introduces their new training program.

"With 450 students having graduated from this comprehensive course in 18 months, there is no doubt that the sectional title scheme management industry is becoming more professional" says Graham Paddock, the author of the course. Consumers throughout South Africa now have the power to choose a professional managing agent to look after their most important investment. So, says Graham Paddock, "Trustees of sectional title schemes should insist on viewing a potential property manager's credentials."

Paddocks and the University of Cape Town are offering five scholarships for previously disadvantaged individuals to attend the next six-month course, which begins on 4 June 2007.

For those interested in the qualification, please contact Robyn Allan on 021 674 7818 or email her - for further information.

UCT STSM - June 2007 Info pack and Registration form

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