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Cooling Off

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There are potentially three types of cooling off applicable to the purchase of land

1. Purchaser price of R250 000 or less

Section 29A of the Alienation of Land Act provides that if someone purchases a property valued at R250 000 or less they are entitled to a cool off period. Although the Act does not stipulate that the "cooling off" must be stated in the Agreement of Sale itself, in the case of Sayers v Kahn it was ruled that failure to make reference to the "cooling off clause" rendered the Agreement of Sale null and void. In this case the buyer was not liable for any payment to the seller or agent because both parties neglected to make the buyer aware of the "cooling off period".

As a result of the above ruling back in the early 2000's it became common practice for many standard sale agreements to contain a reference to the above cooling off provision. However since then and countless revisions of standard sale agreements the impact of the above ruling has been forgotten and dropped from many agreements.


2. Transaction resulted from Direct Marketing

There is also a cooling off provision in terms of the Consumer Protection Act. Section 16 of the CPA provides for a cooling-off period of five business days, in instances where transactions were concluded as a result of direct marketing.


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