The City of Cape Town’s Human Settlements Directorate is offering about 9 000 qualifying tenants who are living in Council-owned rental properties the opportunity to purchase their units and to become property owners.

About 9 000 council-owned rental properties in various areas of the metro are available to qualifying tenants for purchasing through the City’s rental sales programme.

These properties include free-standing and semi-detached houses, terraced or row houses and maisonettes that are located across the city in areas such as Gugulethu, Valhalla Park, Mitchells Plain, Heideveld and Nyanga, among others.

A renewed campaign was launched in 2013 to create further awareness of the City’s rental sales programme and a dedicated project team was established to fast-track the programme by encouraging qualifying tenants to make use of the opportunity to become the owners of the rental dwellings many of them had occupied for so many years.

Over the past five years, the City has sold 5 524 units out of an estimated 14 500 saleable units that were identified in 2013.

The rental sales programme, which is managed by the City’s Public Housing Department, is very exciting because it affords qualifying tenants, who are some of the most vulnerable residents, with the opportunity to be empowered as property owners.

The long-term benefits of tenants becoming property owners include having the security of owning their own property and not being limited by a lease agreement between a tenant and a landlord.

“The property will also become a financial asset when ownership is transferred to the new owner. It can thus be sold by the new owner to earn a profit, which can be used to purchase another property, if they so desire. Also, a house can be added to a property owner’s estate so that it can be included in their wills to secure their homes for their loved ones in future,” says the City’s Mayoral committee member for Human Settlements, Councillor Malusi Booi.

“This is an exciting opportunity for our qualifying tenants, and we encourage them to take this step towards owning their own property. If our tenants have any questions regarding this opportunity, they are encouraged to visit their local housing office where they will be assisted,” says Councillor Booi.

Multi-storey blocks of flats are not available for sale at present. The sale of blocks of flats can only happen through the implementation of a sectional title dispensation as set out in the Sectional Title Scheme Act (8 of 2011).