Level 5 limits a challenge for sectional titles
ENFORCING the new Level 5 water restrictions imposed by the City of Cape Town is of “utmost importance” for sectional title body corporates, but is difficult to do without sub-water or prepaid water meters.
Trustees need to establish other ways of monitoring residents’ usage – or face huge fines if units go over the 20 000 litre monthly household allowance, says Michael Bauer, general manager of property management company IHFM.
The city says it will impose fines from R5 000 to R10 000 a month if water use exceeds the allocated amount, and these fines could financially cripple body corporates.
The sliding scale on which water is billed should be enough of a deterrent to over-usage, and unit owners or tenants are urged to implement water saving practices, Bauer says. He offers these tips:
Repurpose grey water from showers and basins into toilet cisterns for flushing.
Water plants with water used to cook vegetables.
Shower for only two to four minutes.
Only wash clothes when worn more than once.
Bauer says multi-storey buildings that do not use pumps and overhead tanks – as required by the city’s building regulations – may experience supply problems due to the reduction in water pressure. Residents are encouraged to approach their body corporates or managing agents to ensure these systems are in place and operational.
Bauer says residents of multiunit buildings are also advised to always have two to five litres of emergency water on hand.
“We all need to pull together to stick to the 87 litre allocation per person per day, or face dire consequences later in the season. A handy calculator at http://mycapetownneeds.co.za/thinkwater/calculator.html can be used to help people calculate what they are using daily,” Bauer says.