Woman claims estate agent deceived her

SPACE INVADER: The home that Tamara Jenethwa bought from infact Home but cannot occupy. She and her children have to rent back room. Pic. Thobeka Zazi Ndabula. 28/05/2007. © Sowetan.
SPACE INVADER: The home that Tamara Jenethwa bought from infact Home but cannot occupy. She and her children have to rent back room. Pic. Thobeka Zazi Ndabula. 28/05/2007. © Sowetan.

A Protea Glen woman is up in arms about an estate agent who allegedly cheated her into buying a house that had already been sold.

A Protea Glen woman is up in arms about an estate agent who allegedly cheated her into buying a house that had already been sold.

Tamara Jenethwa, who has lost her job, claimed she paid Mannie Steel of Infact Homes R130000 for an incompletely built house on condition that it would be completed.

But she did not move in when she discovered that the house had already been sold to another family.

Jenethwa said she had decided to sell her house to enable her to offset her bond and use the balance to buy another house.

She said Steel convinced her to buy the incomplete house by promising to have it completed within three months.

This has forced Jenethwa to rent a back room in Ennerdale, where she now lives with her two children.

"I decided to cancel the deal. Steel gave me a cheque, but it bounced because there were no funds in his account," said Jenethwa.

She said he gave her a refund of R20000, but this was not enough.

"It is traumatic for my son because there are times when I have to undress and take a bath in his presence - something he is not used to," said Jenethwa.

"I am frustrated and want to restore normality to our lives."

She said living in a back room had affected her son's performance at school.

She said their rented room is an all-in-one: a kitchen, bathroom, dining-room, TV and study room, and a bedroom.

She said she had reported Steel to the police's commercial crime unit and, after its intervention, Steel offered to pay her rent. He did so on three occasions.

She said she wondered if Steel really owned the house, which is now complete and is occupied by another family.

Though he had offered to refund Jenethwa on a monthly basis, Steel said he would seek legal advise.

"When I proposed to pay my money into his attorney's trust account, he said he did not want to deal with my lawyers, so why must I deal with his lawyers now?" said Jenethwa.

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