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.

Here’s what SA law says about rental deposit refunds

21 May 2019

Property News

Brought to you by Property24

When it comes to the management of rental properties, there is one thing that often causes disputes, and that is how a tenant’s deposit has been handled, what is due to be refunded at the end of the lease period, and what constitutes a failure to refund the said deposit.

The tenant and the landlord must jointly, before the tenant moves into the dwelling, inspect the dwelling to ascertain the existence or not of any defects or damage therein with a view to determining the landlord’s responsibility for rectifying any defects or damage or with a view to registering such defects or damage.

Landlords and rental agents acting on behalf of the landlord should remember that they need to refer to the Rental Housing Act, and should stick to the provisions therein, says Sunell Afrika, rentals manager at property company, SAProperty.com.

According to Afrika, this section of the RHA states:

- 5 (c) The landlord may require a tenant before moving into the dwelling, to pay a deposit.

- 5(d) the deposit contemplated in paragraph (c) must be invested in an interest-bearing account with a financial institution that may not be less than the rate applicable to a savings account with that financial institution. And the landlord must subject to paragraph (g) pay the tenant interest at the rate applicable to such account which may not be less than the rate applicable to a savings account with a financial institution and the tenant may during the period of the lease request the landlord to provide him or her with written proof, in respect of interest accrued on such deposit, and the landlord must provide such proof on request.

- 5(e) the tenant and the landlord must jointly, before the tenant moves into the dwelling, inspect the dwelling to ascertain the existence or not of any defects or damage therein with a view to determining the landlord’s responsibility for rectifying any defects or damage or with a view to registering such defects or damage.

- 5(f) at the expiration of the lease the landlord and tenant must arrange a joint inspection of dwelling at a mutually convenient time to take place within a period of three days prior to such expiration to ascertain if there was any damage caused to the dwelling during the tenant’s occupation.

- 5(g) on expiration of the lease the landlord may apply such deposit and interest towards the payments of all amounts for which the tenant is liable under the said lease. Balance of the deposit and interest must be refunded to the tenant by the landlord not later than 14 days of restoration of the dwelling to the landlord.

- 5(h) the relevant receipts which indicate the costs which the landlord incurred, must be available to the tenant for inspection as proof of such costs incurred by the landlord.

Finally

Every tenant accepts that he or she will pay a deposit before taking occupation of a rental property, and this amount varies from the equivalent of one month’s rent to three - although the majority ask for two months’ rent as a deposit.

Print Print
Top Articles
With rentals so high in Cape Town’s prime coastal strip, buying property often makes more financial sense than renting, with good buy-to-let opportunities for investors...

While it seems we have weathered the worst of the storm, the market decline has slowed and now is the time for property buyers and investors to act. Get the lowdown...

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.

Loading

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