Human Settlements urges residents to be aware of fraudulent housing scams | Western Cape Government


Human Settlements urges residents to be aware of fraudulent housing scams

29 March 2022

The Western Cape Department of Human Settlements urges residents to be aware of fraudulent housing scams that requests you to pay for government housing assistance. Fraudulent scams have increasingly been reported and appears on different platforms, particularly online, requesting citizens to either: pay a deposit or holding fee for a government house; to pay to be approved for a government housing opportunity; or to pay for the processing of an application for example. Residents should be aware that no payment is required to be placed on the housing demand database (ie. waiting list), to apply for a housing subsidy, or any related government housing service.

The Department has been alerted to increasing scams requiring Western Cape residents to pay for government housing assistance. Growing complaints of fraudulent sales of government subsidised houses are also received.

With regard to the sale of any house, it is important to note and request a copy of the title deed from the seller, or some form of proof that the house up for sale is in fact legally owned by the seller. Without such proof, it is not advisable to exchange any money or proceed with any sale.

“In many instances, vulnerable residents fall prey to these scams in the hope of being assisted, or bumped up on the waiting list, for a government housing opportunity. In most cases, money exchanged due to fraudulent scams is not recovered”, commented Ms Phila Mayisela, Acting Head of Department.

To be considered for a government housing opportunity, citizens need to be registered on the housing database at their local municipality. To register, residents can either visit their nearest municipal housing office, or apply online via the Western Cape Government APP,  found on the PlayStore or iStore. 

To qualify for a government subsidised house, residents need to:

  • Be registered on the housing demand database at your nearest municipality.
  • Be a South African citizen or have a permanent residency permit.
  • 18 years or older.
  • Be married or living with a partner.
  • Be single or divorced and have proven financial dependents permanently living with you.
  • Earn a household income of R3 500 or less, before deductions.
  • Not be current or previous property owners.
  • Not have received a housing subsidy from the government before.

The Department also has various subsidies available to assist residents earning between R3,500 and R22,000 gross monthly household income. Enquiries can be made at any municipal housing office. 

The Department urges residents to be alert to requests for money involving government housing and know that: 

  • No exchange of money is needed to get approval for a government subsidised house.
  • You do not have to pay to be on the housing database.
  • Proof of ownership should be requested before proceeding with the sale of any house.

To report any fraudulent scams, residents can contact the National Anti-Corruption Hotline on 0800 701 701.

Media Enquiries: 

Marcellino Martin
Spokesperson for Minister Tertuis Simmers
Tel: 021 483 3397
Mobile: 082 721 3362


Nathan Adriaanse
Director Communication & Stakeholder Relations
Tell: 021 483 2868
Mobile: 083 263 1720