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Conveyancing firms not hip to HIPs
In2perspective.com - UK
Eight out of ten conveyancing firms are not clear about how the HIPs (Home Information Packs) process and legislation are going to work, claims a new survey by ConveyanceLink.

The survey also revealed that a similar proportion were still uncertain as towhat the key components of an HIP were going to be, despite the likelihood that a large number of high street law firms plan to offer a HIPs service in-house.

The research suggests that most high street law firms have little or no confidence in the process and do not believe that HIPs will be ready to launch on 1 June 2007. There is no suggestion that the government will delay the implementation of HIPs, so conveyancing law firms should be taking steps now to put their house in order, warned ConveyanceLink. They need to put in place the necessary IT infrastructure to offer Home Information Packs and start building lasting relationships with local estate agents to ensure that they will benefit from the changes.

Judge - evictions illegal : Experts - no big deal
Moneyweb - South Africa
A recent judgement ruling it illegal to evict CBD squatters may not be all doom and gloom for developers, says Better Buildings programme manager, Geoffrey Mendelowitz.

Better Buildings is a Johannesburg Property Company initiative committed to fixing up slums in the Joburg CBD.

Property experts agree that there is a fine balance at play here. Many agree that the judge's ruling was for the best as the residents, once evicted, would have no other means of shelter and would be worse off.

On the other hand, CBD rejuvenation may be thwarted as it is doubtful that the council has the capacity to find alternative housing quickly and easily, especially within the city.

Land report on shaky ground
Business Day - South Africa
The inelegantly titled "Progress Report of the Panel of Experts on the Development of Policy on the Regulation of Ownership of Land in SA by Foreigners", published on February 17, shocked many informed observers by calling for an immediate moratorium on land acquisitions in SA by foreigners.

Agricultural and Land Affairs Minister Thoko Didiza rejected the recommendation but this does not imply that no such restrictions will be introduced following the final report of the panel, scheduled for April.
Business Day

Land moratorium unlikely
The Citizen - South Africa
Parliament - The government was unlikely to impose a moratorium on foreign land ownership pending the finalisation of regulations, Deputy Agriculture and Land Affairs Minister Dirk du Toit said on Tuesday.

Such a step could impact on an array of constitutionally protected rights.

"I think we can't do that now," he said in response to a question in the National Council of Provinces.

There was a strong argument for the wise regulation of foreign land ownership, Du Toit said. The issue touched on the protection of high-quality farmland, losses of labour and livelihoods, environmental and social impacts, and food security. "The argument for some regulation, at least, is made," the deputy minister said.
The Citizen

Clifton flat sells for R56 000m²
Fin24.co.za - South Africa
A luxury two-bed roomed apartment on Clifton's prestigious Victoria Road overlooking the Atlantic has recently been sold for R56 000m², setting a new record for sectional title property prices in South Africa.

The previous record achieved on the Atlantic seaboard was about R45 000m², also on Victoria Road in adjacent Bantry Bay.

That compares with a Gauteng high of R36 000m² recently achieved at the swanky Michelangelo Towers development on Sandton's Nelson Mandela Square.

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