The Western Cape Government offers a free service to both tenants and landlords of the Western Cape in order to deal with rental related disputes. The service is offered through the Rental Housing Tribunal which is a statutory body established in terms of section 7 of the Rental Housing Act 50 of 1999 (as amended).
Besides investigating and mediating rental disputes for residential properties, the Tribunal also informs rental tenants and landlords of their rights and responsibilities as well as making recommendations to relevant stakeholders on issues to be addressed in the rental housing sector.
Complaints may be lodged with the tribunal by rental tenants, landlords or an interested group. Common rental related complaints are
- Failure to Refund Deposit
- Unlawful Notice to Vacate
- Exorbitant Increase in Rental
- Failure to Accept Notice
- Failure to Provide Municipal Service
- Failure to Pay Rental/Municipal Service/Other Liabilities
- Failure to do maintenance
- Unlawful Eviction / Illegal lockout
- Unilateral Changes to Agreement
- Unlawful Entry
- Unlawful Seizure of Possessions
- Failure to Furnish Receipt for Payment
- Failure to Reduce Lease in Writing
- Claim for Remission on Rental.
A complaint can be lodged by completing the relevant forms which can be obtained from our website (https://www.westerncape.gov.za/dept/human-settlements/public_entities ) or from any of our offices. The forms, once completed, can then be forwarded to the Tribunal in any of the following ways:
- By mail
- By fax
- By email
Once the complaint is lodged, it may take up to 14 days to register and process and all relevant parties will then receive letters via post with a reference number. The following actions will then be taken.
- A preliminary investigation may be conducted to determine whether the complaint relates to a dispute in respect of a matter which may constitute an unfair practice.
- The complaint/investigation may take up to 90 days to be finalized as prescribed in the Rental Housing Act 50/1999.
- If the Tribunal is of the view that there is a dispute, such dispute may be resolved through mediation. If it cannot be resolved through mediation or there is no prospect of a successful mediation, the matter will be resolved through a hearing.
- In terms of section 13(13) of the Rental Housing Act 50 of 1999 (the “Act”) a ruling of the Tribunal is deemed to be an order of a Magistrate’s Court in terms of the Magistrate’s Court Act, 1994.
The Tribunal primary can be found at the Head Office in Cape Town, 27 Wale Street and also has a satellite office at the 2nd Floor, York Park Building, C/o of Progress & York Street, George. The Tribunal is open from Monday to Friday from 07h30 – 15h30 and the services of the Tribunal are freely available to all members of the public. Contact details for enquiries are
- Contact Centre: 0860 106 166
Please Call Me: 079 769 1207
SMS: Help to 31022
Telephone: 021 483 5020 / 0645 / 2396
Fax: 021 483 3313