a later period.
The norm is the deeds will come out in the purchaser’s name. This method of ownership is common with developers or new developments.
Cession requirements by the City of Harare on those offered by council not private developers
The seller of the property must be in possession of an Agreement of Sale, which they entered with the council. They are to approach the district officer in whose jurisdiction the property falls to apply for a cession.
The seller is to take along with them personal identification documentation, including spouses’ personal identification documentation. A spouse must consent to a proposed cession regardless of whether the spouse is a co-purchaser or not of the property being sold.
The buyer is to accompany the seller when applying for the cession. It is a requirement of the council that the buyer should have attained the age of majority and be registered on the council housing waiting list. It is prudent that the buyer brings a spouse along with them.
The district officer will complete a cession application which the seller and buyer with their spouses will sign. The district officer retains a copy of the application on the property file at the district office and then sends the main copy to the head office. The district officer will refer the buyer and seller to the head office where cession will be concluded.
This process allows thorough checks to be executed on the documentation to avoid anomalies or fraud. A cession fee is required and this amount will be computer receipted at the head office in Mbare.
A cession document is finalised and authenticated by the approval of the Director of Housing and Community services.
Married couples are jointly advised to purchase properties, as this will curb inheritance disputes in the event of death of either spouse.
Where one intends to buy directly from the council residential stands, this is done through the Director of Housing and Community Services.
The individual should be on the housing waiting list to qualify. The applicant will go through allocation processes, which if successfully completed must result in an agreement of sale being entered between Council and the allottee.
Council does not sanction sales of undeveloped stands acquired through its systems. It is deemed speculative and therefore does not encourage the sale of unserviced/undeveloped land. If buying such property, thorough investigations must be made with the deeds office and or council, before one parts with their money.
They are instances where forged documents are presented in the form of personal identities, title deeds, death certificates, and letters of administration in cases of deceases estates. It is important to verify these documents if one is not familiar with such documentation.
Some people are defrauding home seekers through bogus property developers, housing trusts and housing co-operatives.
High promises are made at very friendly terms making the whole scheme very attractive. Home seekers need to be stringent in verification processes to secure their hard-earned money.
Some information on this article was extracted from the presentation done by the Director of Housing and Community Services of the City of Harare at a seminar entitled Beware of Bogus Sellers and Agents”.
- Vengai Madzima is a property consultant and analyst with Wisdom Properties. He can be contacted on 0772 468093 email: [email protected]