Its my property and I may do with it what I want

14 July 2022 653

The National Building Regulation and Building Standards Act provides uniformity in the law relating to the erection of buildings in the areas of jurisdiction of Local Authorities; for the prescribing of building standards and for matters connected therewith

We find so many individuals building on their property without the consent from the Local Authority, and the Local Authority not being aware of the changes made by owners on their property. It is a legal requirement in South Africa if you want to build renovate or extend your home, that you obtain approval from the Municipality.  

Most people feel that its their property and they can deal with it as they please, but that’s where the problem starts because even though its your property you still have to obtain the Local authorities' consent for structural changes on your property.

Section 4 (1) of the National Building Regulations and building standards act states that: No person shall without the prior approval in writing of the Local Authority in question, erect any building in respect of which plans, and specifications are to be drawn and submitted in terms of the Act. Section 4 goes on to say that if any person erecting any building in contravention of the provisions of subsection (1) shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding R100 for each day on which he was engaged in so erecting such building.

Section 6 states that if the building control officer make recommendations to the authority in question, regarding any plans, specifications, documents, and information submitted to such local authority. Section 7 (1) (a) goes further and states that if a local authority, having considered a recommendation referred to in section 6 (1) (a) is satisfied that the application in question complies with the requirements of this act and any other applicable law, it shall within 30 days after receipt of the application grant their approval.


Section 7 (1) (b) states that:           

(i)         if the local authority is not satisfied

(ii)        is satisfied that the building to which the application is question relates-

(aa)     is to be erected in such manner or will be of such nature or appearance that-            

(aaa)   the area in which it is to be erected will probably or in fact be disfigured thereby.

(bbb)   it will probably or in fact be unsightly or objectionable.

(ccc)   it will probably or in fact derogate  from the value of adjoining or neighboring properties,

Such local authority shall within 30 days after the receipt of such application refuse to grant its approval in respect thereof and give reasons for such refusal;

Provided that any application returned to the applicant in terms of section 6(3), shall be deemed not to have been received by the local authority.

Section 7 (2) states that when a local authority is of the opinion that more than 30 days will be required in order to reach a decision regarding any application it shall within 14 days after receipt of such application so notify the applicant and thereupon the period of 30 days referred to in subsection (1) shall be extended to 60 days and thereafter such period may with the concurrence of such applicant be extended by a further period not exceeding 60 days of their dissatisfaction and the reasons for their dissatisfaction.

In this regard it is thus important to note that the Municipality plays an important roll in your renovation, erecting / building and extension of your home. Its important to make sure that you follow the guidelines provided.