oa De Rebus - Cracks in the wall - what recourse does a subsequent purchaser have? : feature
The scenario should be all too familiar: A client purchased a house and it transpires that the foundations are riddled with structural defects caused by negligent building. In the deed of sale is the usual voetstoots clause, barring any recourse on the basis of latent defects, and, being a private sale, the Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008 is of no refuge. It would seem that the only avenue for redress is attempting to overcome the voetstoots clause by showing deliberate concealment of the defects, a formidable hurdle. The client will no doubt ask whether the architect, structural engineer, or contractor involved in the construction may be sued for negligence. In terms of the common law, this possibility is instinctively rejected out of hand.
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