What are the Conduct Rules in a Sectional Title Scheme?

Conduct rules – To do or not to do?

Many owners of townhouses will complain about the management or body corporate by saying that “They are too strict” or “There are too many rules”!!

But what are these rules known as Conduct Rules?

Conduct Rules were often referred to as “House Rules” and were usually managed by the Trustees of the Sectional Title Scheme. There was no registration required at the Deeds Office.

Today we refer to them as Conduct Rules which are regulated by the owners in a Sectional Title Scheme and filed at the Deeds Office. Once the Rules are approved by way of Special Resolution by the owners of the Sectional Title Scheme, they must by initialled on each page by two (2) trustees of the Body Corporate and a notification page in terms of Section 35 must be signed. These documents are then filed at the Deeds Office.

Why do we need Conduct Rules?

These Rules exist not only to regulate the behaviour of owners and occupiers on the scheme’s common property, but also their behaviour within their respective sections.

Management Rule 69 of the Sectional Title Act stipulates:

“The provision of these rules and the conduct rules, and the duties of the owner in relation to the use and occupation of sections and common property shall be binding on the owner of any section and any lessee or other occupant of any section, and it shall be the duty of the owner to ensure compliance with the rules by his lessee or occupant, including employees guests and any other member of his family, his lessee or his occupant. “

Therefore, not only is an owner of a section bound by these Rules, but also his tenants, guests, employees and any other person he allows access to the premises, including building contractors.

Are the Conduct Rules the same at all Sectional Title Schemes?

Although the Sectional Title Act provides standard rules as seen in Annexure 9 of the Act, and these Rules apply to a Scheme by default in the absence of Specific Rules registered at the Deeds Office,  it does not mean that all the Rules of all the Schemes are the same.

A developer usually amends these Rules when registering a Scheme at the Deeds Office. Owners of a Scheme also amend their Conduct Rules to fit a particular scheme – therefore these Conduct Rules will nearly always differ!

What do Conduct Rules deal with?

  1. Conduct Rules usually deal with the following:
  2. Animals, reptiles and birds
  3. Refuse disposal
  4. Vehicles
  5. Damage, alterations and additions to common property
  6. Appearance from the outside
  7. Signs and Notices
  8. Littering
  9. Laundry
  10. Dangerous Acts
  11. Letting of Units
  12. Eradication of Pests

[A word of appreciation to Ashleigh from Omni Estates]

Also view:

What and who are trustees of a Sectional Title Scheme?

What is an exclusive use area in a Sectional Title Scheme?

Sectional title Insurance – What does it cover and who is responsible?
What are the differences between sectional title and full title ownership?

6 thoughts on “What are the Conduct Rules in a Sectional Title Scheme?

  • February 21, 2011 at 10:35 am
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    Can the conduct rules be changed by the owners? Must a penalty clause be included or can penaltised simply imposed?

    Look forward to your answer.

    Thanks

    Michael

    • March 2, 2011 at 6:07 am
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      There are two different rules in a scheme, management rules and conduct rules. Conduct Rules usually regulate the day-to-day issues, for example parking and laundry issues, whereas the Management Rules regulate the administration and management of the scheme, for example, how the meetings are regulated and so forth. Both sets of rules can be changed, however, Management Rules are far more difficult to change, as a Unanimous Resolution need be obtained from the owners to change them. Conduct Rules can be changed by way of a Special Resolution of the owners at a General Meeting. The Conduct Rules must include penalties and the enforcement thereof and these rules are to be filed in the local Deeds Office, to ensure that they can be enforced. Failure to file the rules in the Deeds Office could make implementation and enforcement of the Conduct Rules extremely difficult, if not impossible. [Reply from Ashleigh , Omni Estates]

  • September 11, 2013 at 1:56 pm
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    Hi Michael, our trustees have recently notified all owners of a new meter reading company. Their services will include reading meters, monthly billing and collection, etc. Many owners are not happy with this decision and have called a ‘Special General Meeting’. The problem that has arisen is that most owners are in arrears with their levy accounts and are therefore excluded from casting a vote. According to the ST act members who are in arrears are not allowed to vote at general meetings, however, there is a provision for special and unanimous resolutions. Would this type of special general meeting fall in the latter category, making it possible for members in arrears to cast a vote?

  • September 11, 2014 at 4:05 pm
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    I have a questions regarding House Rules.

    A new house rule is being proposed that requires all owners to obtain written permission from the trustees to do unit alterations. This seems excessive to me.

    Is this common practice? It sounds unconstitutional to me.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks

  • January 28, 2015 at 6:48 am
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    Are the house rules still valid if it is not registered at the deeds office.

  • June 12, 2015 at 3:17 pm
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    Very good web sight. I am the Chair of a townhouse complex (10 units) in Parys and although we have Code of Conduct Rules and a Constitution there is always flaws and tenants do get away through these loopholes. I will check further what you are offering and will appreciate any help you can offer. Regards Dolf

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