If the leased property is damaged but is still safe to reside in:
In instances where the leased property is damaged by natural disaster such as a flood or violent storm, the liability in respect of the repairs to the immovable property, such as structure and permanent fittings, lies with the owner of the premises.
In terms of sectional title schemes, section 37 of the Sectional Title Act, explains that the Body Corporate is responsible to repair damage to the common property. An example in this respect would be any damage to the roof or foundations of a complex as a result of the floods or rain.
If the property is in the process of being bought:
In the case of property being purchased, liability is dependent on when the property was transferred. Most offer to purchase agreements contain a clause which determines when risk transfers to the buyer. In the TPN OTP, the clause on possession and risk explains:
“Legal Possession of the Property shall be given to the Purchaser on the Registration Date, from which date all benefits and risks in respect of the Property, including the liability of all rates, taxes and levies on the Property, shall pass to the Purchaser, subject to anything to the contrary that may be contained in clause 9.2.” (Clause 9.2 refers to Vacant Occupation).
Therefore, only until the property has transferred to the buyer, will the buyer be liable for any damage to the property. Until then, the seller will remain liable for any damages that may have resulted due to the flooding.
Courtesy of TPN Credit Bureau