Please note that you are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer which is not compatible with some elements of the site. We strongly urge you to update to a newer version for optimal browsing experience.

Can I cancel lease if my power is cut?

25 Jun 2013

A Property24 reader asks:

A Property24 reader says his landlord has not paid his municipal bill and the electricity has been shut off. Can he cancel the lease?

I am a tenant and the owner has not paid his municipal rates and taxes, therefore the power has been cut for the premises I am renting. The estate agent has allowed the owner 14 days to remedy the situation, this means that I could be without electricity for two weeks.

I would like to have the lease cancelled, what are my rights?

Yusuf Boda, legal manager at Legal & Tax, advises:

When an act of an owner renders the property unfit for the purpose for which it was let, such as no water or electricity, a burst geyser, non-working oven, etc. these would need to be attended to by the owner or agency and failure to do so would constitute a material breach of the lease agreement. 

One should look at the lease agreement, in particular the breach clause, to determine what remedies are available to the tenant. If the lease agreement is silent, then urgent notice to remedy the breach should be given to the owner to rectify the breach, where after the lease agreement may be cancelled.

Readers may submit questions to Property24’s Guest Expert panel and/or comment below. We may not be able to answer all questions received, but all will be considered. 

About the Author
Yusuf Boda

Yusuf Boda

As legal manager at Legal & Tax, Yusuf Boda oversees the operations and management of the legal department. He brings extensive practical legal experience to his role at Legal & Tax including a number of years spent in private practice. Boda holds a Master of Laws Degree. He joined Legal & Tax in 2005 as a legal advisor and was promoted to manager of the legal department in 2008.

Print Print
Top Articles
A pioneering partnership between Emira Property Fund and Beetle Busters, who’ve registered a treatment for the infestation, brings hope to saving our urban forests.

Cape Town at US$5 600 per square metre ranks as the most expensive city for residential property in Africa, followed by Umhlanga and Sandton. See the list...

Yearning for a country home where you can relax and unwind away from the city grind? With affordable prices, these homes in Greyton offer a soothing lifestyle…


Your browser is out of date!

It looks like you are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer.

If you are using Internet Explorer 8 or higher, please verify that your Internet Explorer compatibility view settings are not enabled.

For the best browsing experience, update to the latest Version of Internet Explorer or try out Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

Please contact our Property24 Support Team for further assistance. Tel. +27 (0)861 111 724