Can my sister, who waited ten years for a house, be rejected from getting one because she has since got married?

The short answer

Marriage does not disqualify her from getting an RDP house, unless her husband’s income is above R3,500 a month.

The whole question

My sister applied for a house ten years ago. She has been on a waiting list since. This year she was called to sign papers as the beneficiary of a house in a new housing project. Two weeks later, instead of receiving the keys, she was told that she no longer qualifies because when she applied she was unmarried, but now she is.

I can't understand this reason. My sister is unemployed and struggles. Can she be rejected for a house because she has got married?

The long answer

Thank you for your email about your sister being told she would not get a house in a new housing project in Cape Town because she got married in the ten years she has been on a housing waiting list.

Being married is not a reason for being refused a house, even if she was single when she first registered for a house. If she is unemployed, perhaps her husband’s income is above R3,500 a month? This would mean that she would not qualify for an RDP house.

Being on a housing list is a complicated business as there isn’t just one list and it’s often not clear how beneficiaries are selected.

This article gives the following categories of government housing:

(1) Government subsidy housing

(2) Community Residential Units

(3) Upgrading of Informal Settlements Programme

(4) Emergency Housing Programme

(6) Finance Linked Individual Subsidy Programme.

(5) Social Housing

Your sister should contact your MEC of Human Settlements for help with this. The MEC can review any application that has been rejected.

Here are the contact numbers: 021 483 6488 / 3112 / 0623 / 0611


There is also the Housing Enquiries Hotline: 0800 146 873

Western Cape: 079 769 1207 (You can send a "Please Call Me")


Answered on March 27, 2019, 11:20 a.m.

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