Our rental contracts are negative for the consumer Hi, My lease stipulates that water is part of my monthly rent, so I don`t have to pay for water consumption. I have a five-year lease with the owner who, in this case, is a business. We have now received a message saying that water meters are installed and that the water is on behalf of the tenant. The company asserts that it is within its rights to change the terms of sale under the Consumer Act. I dispute this because a contact is a legally binding document and the terms and conditions can only change with the agreement of both parties. I understand that the rent has provided an amount for the average water consumption. Please advise to know if I am right or wrong in my thinking. With friendly greetings Marius The CEO of HIGH FLYERS PROPERTY shouts his own legal counsel JACK – Jack! What do you mean by that that you do not know if the Consumer Protection Act (CPA), which began on April 1, 2011, applies to the 20,000 leases we entered into at the beginning of the CPA contract? We reiterate that clauses that are at odds with leases are unenforceable, cancelled and separable from the rest of the agreement, but that is not all. In addition, owners who object to the provisions of the CPA are open to a one-year prison sentence or a fine (the largest of 10% of annual turnover or R1mi) or both a fine and one year`s imprisonment. In addition, according to Section 51 of the CPA, there can no longer be clauses stipulating that the lessor did not give insurance or guarantees to the tenant prior to the conclusion of the contract if this had actually been done. This fact is false and capable of being challenged by the introduction of extrinsic evidence. Under the provisions of Section 51, the following clause of a rental property contract could be called into question if certain statements were made to the tenant but were not included in the tenancy agreement: according to Section 49 CPA, any part of a housing lease agreement that limits the liability of the landlord, for example. B in cases of pure negligence (serious negligence is dealt with within the meaning of Article 51).

, or which leads the tenant to take a risk or liability or to ask the tenant to compensate the lessor or to constitute a de facto confirmation by the tenant, must be clearly reported and brought to the attention of the tenant, in addition to clear language. It is important that landlords provide potential tenants with substantial leases and provide them with sufficient time to deny, clarify and modify them. For the CPA to be applicable in these cases, there are certain provisions that must be included in a rental agreement for housing contracts. In addition, The Rental Housing Act 50 of 1999 provides for certain provisions that must be included in leases and are considered to be part of the contractual terms, whether or not the parties accept in writing. It is interesting to note that the CPA is not written in plain language, but in section 22 of the CPA, all residential real estate leases must be written in plain language. This means that a rental contract for housing contracts must be written in such a way that tenants with average reading and writing skills and who do not have much experience as tenants can still understand what such an agreement says.