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New research values South Africa's property sector at R4.9 trillion
Property Sector Charter Council - South Africa
The South African property sector is worth a whopping R4.9 trillion according to a new study undertaken to discover the size of the country's property sector.

This Property Sector Charter Council commissioned research is the first study of its kind in South Africa.

CEO of the Property Sector Charter Council, Portia Tau-Sekati says: "The research creates a hub of knowledge about the property sector, consolidating information and developing a common and consistent understanding. By determining the size of the South African property sector, we are moving towards a proper baseline measure to assess market size and its components, the scale of different services and activities within the sector and ultimately BEE transformation figures in line with the Property Sector Code scorecard.

Establishing the scope of the property sector is important for an accurate overview of the South African economy, taking into account that in 2009 the property sector contributed 8.3% of SA's Gross Domestic Product (GDP), according to a South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) research report "The Economic Impact of the Property Sector in South Africa".

The figures in the study provide a snapshot that reflects the status in the property sector at the base date of December 2010.

Property Barometer - Home Affordability 
FNB - South Africa
The SARB has done more than enough to improve home affordability and thus the residential market. It’s time to look elsewhere for solutions.
So this week the MPC deliberates once more, and consumer price inflation at 4.9% for July suggests that further interest rate reduction can be justified from a narrow inflation targeting point of view. But from the household sector’s longer term financial health would this be the right thing? The SARB has already greatly improved housing affordability through the massive interest rate reduction since late-2008, despite only a moderate response by the housing market has been witnessed.

What needs to happen now before the housing market moves to sustainably stronger levels is for the level of household indebtedness relative to income to decline, for the savings rate to improve significantly, and for the big adjustment to be made to sharp rates and utilities tariffs related to housing. These financial health improvement probably won’t be achieved by further interest rate reductions should they occur.
FNB Property Barometer Home Affordability Sept 2012

SRA to help firms embed mortgage fraud risk systems
Mortgage Finance Gazette - UK
The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has set out how it intends to engage with firms undertaking conveyancing work in order to reduce the risk of mortgage fraud.

It is re-visiting its draft Conveyancing Strategy starting with a comprehensive review of current practices, which will run until the end of 2013.

Over the years, conveyancing has accounted for a high proportion of claims on both solicitors' insurance and the Compensation Fund, as well being the subject of an unacceptable volume of complaints against the profession.

While some claims arise from poor quality work, most are a result of weak risk management and compliance systems within the practice. This has resulted in a failure to detect fraudulent activities or other dishonesty on the part of third parties or, indeed, within firms themselves.

Sectional Title: Real power still lies with the owners
Chas Everitt - South Africa
The trustees play a critical role in determining the success or failure of any sectional title (ST) scheme, but it is important to note that they are at all times under the control of the body corporate.

So says Berry Everitt, MD of the Chas Everitt International property group, who notes: “The members of the body corporate appoint trustees at their first meeting after the establishment of the ST scheme, and at every subsequent annual general meeting (AGM). These appointments usually last until the next AGM, at which the trustees have to be properly re-nominated and elected if they want to continue in office, or new trustees have to be nominated and elected.

“Anyone who is legally nominated and elected can be a trustee – it can be a registered owner, a relative or spouse of an owner, or a tenant – as long as the majority of the trustees in the scheme are owners or spouses of owners then there is a valid board of trustees.”
Real sectional title power

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