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Property: Don’t Pay Double Commission!


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11Bellwood debra@gouwsattorneys.co.za debra@gouwsattorneys.co.za www.kle.co.za/home.htm















September 2020 NEWSLETTER
Property: Don’t Pay Double Commission!
Property sellers face enough challenges in these tough times without finding themselves liable to pay two full sets of commission to different estate agencies.

As a recent High Court case shows, when multiple agencies market your property and more than one agency engages with the eventual buyer on one level or another, confusion and dispute can all too easily arise over which agency was the “effective cause” of the sale. And our courts may award commission to both agencies “where it is impossible to distinguish between the efforts of one agent and another in terms of causality or degrees of causation.”

We share some thoughts on how sellers, buyers and agents can protect themselves in such a situation.
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Directors, Trustees: Can You Hold Your AGMs and General Meetings on Zoom?
ArticleImage Even with the lockdown easing, it seems likely that the need for social distancing will be part of our “new normal” for quite some time to come.

So how as a company director do you comply with the Companies Act’s strict requirements to hold Annual General Meetings? What if you need to call an interim General Meeting? 

We discuss the option of holding these meetings either wholly or partly online. “Virtual meetings” are very much part of our law, but certain formal requirements need to be complied with. We discuss these as they apply to companies, directors, shareholders and bodies corporate/Home Owners Associations.  
   
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Buying a Business? Make Sure the Seller Publishes Notice of the Sale
ArticleImage If you are looking to buy a business or its assets (and there will no doubt be many opportunities to do so given the hard trading conditions now facing many industries) be aware of the little-understood danger of failing to advertise the sale prior to transfer of the business/assets.

Get that one wrong and you could easily lose both your newly acquired business, and your money. We’ll discuss that in the context of a recent R8m High Court case around a property sold by a property developer shortly before it was liquidated. The buyer argued that advertisement was not required because the seller was not a “trader” but the Court disagreed and declared the sale void. Both the transfer of the property to the buyer, and the mortgage bond registered by a bank over the property, were set aside.
   
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Options to Renew Leases – Risks for Landlords and Tenants
ArticleImage Leases commonly contain “options to renew” clauses and both landlords and tenants should be careful to ensure that such clauses are clearly and correctly worded.

Illustrating with the help of four recent court judgments, we explore the questions of the extent to which “fairness” (in the form of Ubuntu and public policy considerations) can trump the need to comply strictly with a lease’s terms, the dangers of uncertainty and vagueness in the terms of the renewal option (with particular reference to agreed rental), the question of deadlock breaking mechanisms, and the importance of a tenant giving the required notice of renewal.
   
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Website of the Month: Protecting Yourself from SIM-swap Fraud
ArticleImage Fraudulent SIM swaps were involved in around 13,300 reported digital banking fraud incidents across online and mobile banking and banking apps in 2019 (up 16% from 2018) and all indications are that the lockdown will see another spike in incidents.

Read “What to do if you are a victim of SIM-swap fraud” on My Broadband for tips on the dangers, how to protect yourself from becoming a victim, how to tell if you are under attack, and what to do about it if it happens.

Stay safe out there!
   







Disclaimer

The information provided herein should not be used or relied on as professional advice. No liability can be accepted for any errors or omissions nor for any loss or damage arising from reliance upon any information herein. Always contact your professional adviser for specific and detailed advice.


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