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  1. You could try contacting the municipality and expressing your concerns to them. They would be in a position to demand that the owner does the necessary repairs and maintenance.

  2. Hi I would like to find out who to contact, we are renting and the owner doesnt what to fix the lapa, the lapa is def not up to standard and is a danger to my family, its build directly to and on the roof of the house and is busy falling over and the chimney is very low and have no spark catchers and the neighbour are worried that the house is going to catch fire because its hanging over their wall.

  3. There is no limit on size of any living quarters. The limit on size would arise if you have reached the density percentage for your proterty. This means that you are going over the amount of square meters that you are allowed to build on on your erf. All properties are governed by by-laws and they all have their own unique amount that is allowed.

  4. Hi,

    What is the reason staff quarters can’t be bigger than 40sq.m?

  5. This is not a National Building Regulations matter but it is a local authority requirement of their specific zoning by-laws. If that is what they require then you will have to comply or ask for a waiver.

  6. Normally a home builder has one year in which to complete the building of a dwelling from the time that the plans were approved. Time extensions can be applied for after this and reasons for the delay must be given. So long as the building is within the allowed building lines then no permission is required from any of the neighbours. As you say council regulations have been complied with otherwise he would not have recieved permission to start building. If he has moved away from the approved plan and is building something not approved then a complaint can be made. As for the “eyesore” you can approach the council on the basis that it is an eyesore and see what their reaction is.

  7. Belinda Daymond says:

    Good Day.

    New owners – one street away from the beach have bought a “shell” from the previous owner who demolished the dwelling to foundations. The “shell” has been an eyesore for 10 months and only recently have the new owners started to build – albeit slowly. Some residents maintain the new owner must build quickly or sell the property – many are aghast as – as the walls go up the structure is not appealing – they say that the residents never signed off the plans. I say – private owned , owner is a foreigner as his cash flow improves so he builds – so what – if private residence , I have no jurisdiction to sign off plans or interfere as long as the Council regulations have been complied with by owner . If there is compliance what are neighbours entitled to complain about ? Structure is a two – story building.

  8. 08.09.2014

    Hi Anybody who can help.

    I’ve submitted plans on behalf of a client to council with a Double storey House and Proposed Granny flat situated
    at the back of the erf beyond the 3.0m building lines ,1500mm away from one side and the rear boundary
    and 0m to the remaining side boundary lines…Linear m requirements are that it should be within or on the
    3000m building lines.
    Land Use Management ask for neighbor’s consent which we did obtain with a few of objections from
    the adjoining neighbor’s one being the building’s to high on the boundary 3700mm above ngl ..should it be 3300 or 4000? they also say that the house is too high…at 7700 to the roof ridge which should be not higher than 8000 above natural ground level according to the NBR
    please advise

  9. Hi Louis, ANY deviation from the approved plan will need a rider plan with the amendments, plus any others, to be submitted to your council once building has finished. You might not an occupation certificate until these have been approved. You should check this with your local council.

  10. Hi,
    should for example, a drawing call for a room size of 3m x 6m – is there a regulation that talks to allowable deviations from these measurements?


  11. Craig the municipality has the last say. I suggest you contact them for clarification because they have the power to tell anyone who is non compliant to demolish a structure.

  12. Good Day

    We built my braai and lapa area against the boundary wall as originally instructed by our architect who drew the plans. However the municipality informed him that the braai must be built 5 meters way from the boundary wall, but he never inform us of this amendment!

    Problem is that we started builing based on his instruction already.
    We extremly concerned of the implications, can someone please provide some insight/advice on what we can do?


  13. To whom it may concern

    the drafts man is not registerd under architect board but after he draw the plan he submitted the plan to the structural engineers for monitoring and avaluation then the egineers issues an engineer certificate taking reposibilities of monitoring the construction so is it possible for the client to submit the plan to the local athourities for approval.

  14. George there is nothing like this in SANS 10400-1990 that preceded the current SANS 10400.

  15. Hi,

    The SANS 10400-L:2011 says that waterproofing on a flat concrete roof must be watertight for at least 5 years without maintenance, I am looking for a similar clause in an older building regulations dated 2008/2009, can you please assist as I am struggling to find it?


  16. Why has the builder not followed the plans? Either the builder must remove the door that is not on the plans, or have the plans altered. It depends who told him to do this. If he did it off his own bat then it will be for his cost.

  17. hi there

    a friend of mine is having a free standing house built, on the plans the builder only has one door and this has been passed but now the builder has added a back door as well as a sliding door and none of this has been changed on the plans.
    please could someone help and let us know what we can do?

  18. Hi MC, site densities vary from suburb to suburb and from town/city to town/city. This can be on average 60% coverage and also has height limits. So it is not possible to give you a precise figure. The best is to contact your local municipality planning section and ask them

  19. M.C Kotze says:

    Size required to built flats

    I just want to know if there is an minimum size for the plot if you want to built at least 4 to 5 flats.

  20. Edgar this is obviously a highly complex legal matter, I honestly can’t comment. Sorry. Maybe someone else has some ideas?

  21. Hi Andre, This is the paragraph that I think you are looking for:
    3.11.2 For high voltage cables (1 kV to 11 kV) a coloured plastic marking tape shall be installed 400 mm above the cable. The tape shall be yellow, marked with the words “ELECTRIC CABLE/ELEKTRIESE KABEL” in red. These markings shall not be more than 1m apart from centre to centre. The full document can be downloaded here: download-regulations Scroll down to “General Electrical Specification PartA And PartB”

  22. A v d Westhuizen says:

    underground electrical cables

    Good evening. Must all underground electrical cables be covered with a warning tape above the actual depth of the cables? For instance the cable is 1.5m underground, should the warning tape be 500mm below the ground surface ?
    Andre van der Westhuizen

  23. Hi Nicholas, If you are on a erf that is higher than his and you have no other way of dealing with the stormwater, then your neighbor must take the runoff from your property. Most by-laws in SA are similar.
    Here is a paragraph from the by-law:

    2. Where, in the opinion of the Council, it is impracticable for stormwater to
    be drained from higher lying erven direct to a road, the owner of the
    lower lying erf shall be obliged to accept and/or permit the passage over
    the erf of such stormwater: Provided that the owners of any higher lying
    erven, the stormwater from which is discharged over any lower lying erf,
    shall be liable to pay a proportionate share of the cost of any pipe line or
    drain which the owner of such lower lying erf may find necessary to lay or
    construct for the purpose of conducting the water so discharged over
    the erf.
    Ask your local building inspector to arbitrate the matter.

  24. Hi
    I have a neibour that has built an outside structure right up against my wall at the back of my property. I dont have a problem with the building. The problem is that he has blocked the flow of the storm water that used to run through a vent in that wall which he has now blocked with his building. I have tried to talk to him about this but he tells me it is not his problem. My question is is there any legal way to deal with this because when it now rains my garden becomes a dam.

    Thank you

  25. Hi Shivani, You have the right to request the local council to give the reasons why they did not make the developer install a stormwater system. I will be posting an article about the PAJA soon so check back. The law is the THE PROMOTION OF ADMINISTRATIVE JUSTICE ACT, 2000 (ACT 3 OF 2000), PAJA. In the meantime you can visit their website here: If you suspect that if there are any corrupt dealings associated with this development then you can also report this.

  26. Hi,
    In a case of encroachment, who must be first in taking action to prove that he is right,
    1) The Agricultural land belongs 45 years two us
    2) When the new developers rezone the next holding, the land surveyor find a 1 meter encroachment from our property into their stand,
    3) The boundary was their from the 1950’s.
    4) the two party’s is in a very documented, high court struggle,
    5) The new developers did mention, they will move our buildings and rebuilt, while they build the new development,
    6) But the moment they finish their 33 units,
    7) They refuse anything to build for us and we must breakdown the wall on our cost,
    8) And stated now that because we knowing of the encroachment for about 2 years,
    9) We did not intention to become the owners thereof and no such case is made out

    So the question, they keep us busy the whole time with promises, they never insist on the South Africa Encroachment law, but we did tell them in the beginning there is law’s, and regulations for this matter.
    Who is responsible to take first action?
    Thank you

  27. Shivani Singh says:

    Hi. We bought into a new development about a year ago. The properties are situated below road level and do not have proper storm water drains in place. 3 months after transfer there was a major flooding and the developer was notified of the lack of proper storm water drains that resulted in the flooding of some of the homes, and did nothing about it. He simply said that it was the “Body corporates” responsibility. 5 months later, another flash flood and this time there was damage to the interior of the 2 houses due to the lack of storm water drains.

    A couple of months ago, another owner had to call in a contractor to help “underpin” part of his foundation due to problems caused by the adjacent incomplete houses of the development due to lack of storm water drains.

    The developer is now back to complete his development neither accepting any responsibility for the damage caused, nor wanting to install the proper storm water drains, despite the development not being complete.

    Kindly advise what we as a body corporate can do. Thanks

  28. Lorna that sounds as if there is a very high water table. An engineer will advise on what special steps would need to be taken if building. The problem is largely with the foundations. Also if there is heavy rain, the water will rise and you may well have rising damp problems.

  29. thanku Penny there is another thing worrying me the land has brakish water underneath it about a metre deep.can one stil build on that kind of land. regards Lorna

  30. Lorna you will need planning permission relating to zoning, and you will need approved plans for all construction work. This must be done by a competent person who will need to oversee all building work. For the rest, you must comply with the National Building Regulations throughout.

  31. if wanting 2 build a village in an existing community what are the requirements

  32. There is an article about “temporary buildings” and the NBR HERE. Perhaps that will answer your question.

  33. Sarah Milton says:

    Hi I have leased a piece of land of an owner who’s farm is zoned agricultural / Mining. I have signed a lease with him and have had consent from him to run a riding school.
    We on a farm 563 in the caledon/overberg district.
    As part of the lease I am to build removable housing for the horses and myself so as when I leave I am to vacate the land of the buildings.
    What is required as far as submitting plans etc to the municipality under these circumstances.
    Sarah Milton

  34. The SANBS should be able to tell you. I cannot believe how often councils “lose” plans. It’s shocking. Alternatively you could do a search at the deeds office to see who previous owners were. There may even be plans lodged with the title deeds.

  35. John parking is not covered by the National Building Regulations. Parking and loading is “governed” by the local authority. You can download the Consolidated Johannesburg Town Planning Scheme, 2011 from this web site. I have given you the link. Part VI which starts on Page 52 of this document deals with Parking and Loading.
    If you need further clarification you will need to contact the City of Johannesburg.
    There is a pdf that you can also download from this site HERE – that has the contact numbers of all the local authorities. Rustenburg probably has its own office, I haven’t checked.

  36. John Fourie says:

    Hi there,
    My apologies as I honestly have no idea under what page to paste this.

    I live in Rustenburg and would like to know what regulations cover the minimum amount of parking bays the must be provided at a school sports field. A local school is purchasing a vancant piece of property to build a rugby/hockey field with two netball fields. I have seen the plans and they have made no provision for parking and the vacant property is not large enough for parking should they build what they want. I just want to understand what is required by law otherwise with sports days and practices we will have a lot of parents parked all over the neighborhood.

  37. anita du Toit says:

    On this porperty there is a building currently owned by the SANBS. I would like to know who the builder and/or architect and or structural engineers were.
    The city council lost the plans, is there any other way I can obtain this information?

  38. Hi Carla,
    The regulation that you are asking about is SANS 10400 Part-C, you can read what we say here: size-dimensions-room-height A parking garage is classed in SANS 10400 Part-A as a J4 occupancy (Occupancy used for storing or parking of more than 10 motor vehicles). The Part-C does not refer specifically to J4 occupancy but rather uses this as a rule-of-thumb clause: “4.3.2 Notwithstanding the requirements contained in table 2, where any structural member projects below the level of the ceiling or, where there is no ceiling, below the level of the roof covering, the height of such projection shall be not less than 2,1 m”

  39. To whom it may concern,

    I cannot find the prescribed minimum height for a retail parking garage? And in which section is it?

    Please help.