Obtaining Rates Clearance Certificates from the Municipality
When selling your property, a rates clearance certificate is one of the documents needed by the conveyancing attorney to lodge the transfer at the Deeds Office.
Applications for rates clearance certificates are handled by a conveyancer (attorney) and never by the seller.
Overstrand Municipality processes up to 350 clearance certificates in any given month. It could take up to 10 days from the time the Municipality receives your application, for the outstanding figures to be issued. If the outstanding monies are paid immediately, the clearance certificate could be issued within the next following 10 days.
The clearance process:
The seller is responsible for making sure that all outstanding amounts owed to the Municipality, is settled. Overstrand Municipality will only issue a clearance certificate once it has received a completed prescribed application form, together with all required documentation from the conveyancer (attorney).
Rates clearance applications for properties without any improvements (vacant erven) require an initial inspection by the Fire Department before the conveyancer is notified of any outstanding amounts payable. Should the vacant stand be declared a fire hazard, a plot-clearing deposit will be added to the advance collections, unless the property is cleared, re-inspected and declared fire-hazard free by the Fire Department. The inspection fee is R233 and the plot-clearing administration fee is R1 345.73 VAT incl. till 30 June 2022 (plus the actual cost of clearing the plot).
The cost for electronic applications via Ratesclearance.com or L@W amounts to R186. Make sure your attorney has access to either of these electronic systems as it is much cheaper to do it electronically. Manual applications via e-mail amounts to R588. Amounts include VAT and will be applicable for the period up to 30 June 2022.
On the sale of any property within Overstrand’s jurisdiction, the Municipality will delay the transfer of a property by withholding a clearance certificate until such time as all rates, service and sundry charges and any estimated amounts payable on the property for the duration of the validity of the certificate, are settled in full.
The validity period of a rates clearance certificate is 60 days and the amount due for payment will include three months’ advance collections plus all current outstanding debt on the property.
Upon receipt of the completed rates clearance application form, the Municipality has 10(ten) working days to forward the amount due for payment and a further 10(ten) working days to produce the rates clearance certificate once proof of payment has been established.
Where a debtor has entered into an arrangement with the Municipality in respect of the arrears on a property, the prescribed certificate as referred to in Section 118 of the Systems Act, will not be issued until such time as the full outstanding amount has been settled.
Sellers are also reminded to ensure that disconnection forms are duly completed where properties are equipped with water and/or electricity meters, so that these can be transferred to the new owner (the buyer).
Similarly, buyers of properties that are equipped with water and/or electricity meters, are reminded to complete connection forms. These forms are available on our website. Go to www.overstrand.gov.za, click on Documents, click on Forms, click on Revenue Application Forms.
For queries, phone the Municipality on 028 313 8000 and ask for the Rates and Data Control Office. Alternatively send an email to email@example.com.