Relief for senior citizens

The Anne Burger Old Age Home Anne in Crown Woods, south of the City, will see a reduction in monthly rentals for its elderly residents.
The Anne Burger Old Age Home Anne in Crown Woods, south of the City, will see a reduction in monthly rentals for its elderly residents.

 

The Old Age Villages Association has complained for years that they can’t afford the current rent which is R230 for a bachelor unit and R400 for A one bedroom unit per month. The amount excludes electricity, but includes water.

The elderly also complained that they have been living in poor conditions because the City does not perform proper maintenance. Most tenants depend on their State pension for survival which is their only source of income.

Department of Human Settlements MEC Jacob Mamabolo, on behalf of housing spokesperson Motsamai Motlhaolwa, said after hearing all the relevant evidence, the Gauteng Rental Housing Tribunal arrived at a decision to order the City to decrease the rental.

Motlhaolwa said pensions vary between R1 350 and R1 410 per month per person. He said, “The expenses varied from R2 022 and R3 850 per person or per couple. This meant that there is a shortfall of R772 and R1 240 per month when one considered that they still had to pay for other expenses such as food, transport and medicine.”

The elderly also wanted the rent to be reduced to R135 per month for a bachelor unit and R270 for a one bedroom unit as this would be equivalent to 10 percent of their pension income and that would be much more affordable to them.

Motlhaolwa said the matter was delicate as it impacts upon competing claims made by a vulnerable section of society on the other hand and the organ of State on the other. According to the ruling, the rent has been reduced to R180 per month for a bachelor unit and R360 for a one bedroom unit in all facilities owned and managed by the City. The rent is payable from September and this can be adjusted by the City when it’s due for rental reviews.

In the ruling it stated, “The tribunal ruling is deemed to be that of a magistrates’ court in terms of the Magistrates Court Act 44 ( Act No. 32 of 1944) and is enforced in terms of that act.”

Meanwhile, Motlhaolwa said, “There are 31 villages and about 6 000 elderly people who are impacted by this decision.”

Share your views on the rent review by tweeting @MidrandReporter

  AUTHOR
Aphiwe Boyce
Metro Reporter

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