South Africa’s residential property market is showing signs of improvement, as evidenced by increased enquiries from prospective buyers, improved show house attendance and stock shortages in a growing number of areas.
That’s the word from Richard Gray, CEO of Harcourts Real Estate SA, following the release of FNB’s April 2013 House Price Index, which reports “mildly positive growth” during the first quarter of 2013, with the likelihood of further value gains in the second quarter.
“As a group, we’re seeing a widespread uptick in terms of buyer interest. From being in the doldrums for the last few years, the market appears to be on the road to recovery, with house price growth in popular suburbs on track to exceed inflation in real terms for the first time since 2008,” he says.
However, he warns, the positive spinoffs of an improving market are likely to be experienced by only…
Boksburg, described by mining commissioner Montague White in 1888 as one of the most uninviting spots he’d ever seen, is today one of Gauteng’s more attractive and sought-after cities as evidenced by its growing population: according to the results of the last Census, it has grown from 158 600 residents in 2001 to more than 445 000 in 2012.
That’s the assertion of Brian Dugmore, principal of Harcourts Anchor in Boksburg, who says the area bears no resemblance to the dry, tree-less expanse of the late 1800s. “Boksburg has literally turned into an oasis, not only with regard to its environmentally attractive setting and thriving industrial and retail sectors but also because of its wide range of property offerings in all price ranges” says Dugmore.
Less than 20km to the centre of Johannesburg and with its own thriving industrial zone in the form of Jet Park, it’s…
Home buyers with serious spending power in KwaZulu-Natal’s Upper Highway area had only one suburb in their sights until a few years ago: Kloof.
However, the lush residential suburb that grew out of a weekend and holiday retreat for wealthy Durban residents can no longer lay claim to being the only top-of-the-hill destination, avers Murray Aberdein, principal of Harcourts Suburban Spaces.
Aberdein, whose company recently joined the giant Harcourts group after five years of successful operation as an independent, explains: “Hillcrest, long its countrified neighbour, has superseded Kloof as the economic hub of the Upper Highway on the back of intense and large-scale commercial, retail and residential development. The centre of Hillcrest today bears no resemblance to the little village of ten years ago, and the smallholdings and sugar cane fields that characterised the area have now made way for acres of prime secure estates such as…
Property prices in Cape Town’s northern suburbs are finally showing positive capital growth – the first time since 2008.
Labuschagne, who heads up a team of 20 qualified “cherry picked” estate agents, says house prices in his area of operation, which comprises Bellville, Durbanville, Brackenfell, Kuils River, Parow and Kraaifontein amongst others, are showing growth of around 5% year-on-year. This he attributes to a number of factors, not least of all that the recession is receding, a belief supported by his company’s record turnover last year, after doubling its 2011 sales volumes.
However, he points out, buyers are still extremely price conscious and affordability therefore remains fundamental to continued market momentum. This is one of the reasons for the growing popularity of the area, which he says offers better brick-and-mortar…
House prices on the West Rand are “realistic”, one of the reasons behind a growing influx of home buyers to the area who are willing to add extended travelling times to their daily workplace commute in exchange for good brick-and-mortar value for money.
Calling the West Rand “the undiscovered jewel in the Gauteng crown”, Barbosa says people venturing out west for the first time are invariably impressed at the area’s facilities, scenic countryside setting and the competitive pricing of its housing stock. This, along with its proximity to excellent highways, which soften the distance between the Johannesburg city centre and home, is behind a growing number of buyers’ decisions to cancel their searches in other closer, though more expensive, locales, maintains Barbosa, a 25 year veteran of the West Rand…
South Africa’s beleaguered real estate industry has entered a new era with the signing of a memorandum of understanding by its two biggest self-governing bodies.
That’s the word from Jeanne Van Jaarsveldt, general manager of Harcourts SA and vice president of the Institute of Estate Agents of South Africa (IEASA), who regards the partnership between the long-established Institute and newly formed Real Estate Business Owners of South Africa (REBOSA) as a major step towards professionalising the sector.
“Collectively, the IEASA and REBOSA represent an overwhelming portion of the real estate industry,” he says. “Together, they intend to carve a new road into the country’s property landscape in the interests of the public as well as business owners and estate agents.”
Van Jaarsveldt believes that the partnership is another welcome and positive step towards professionalising the sector, following the transfer of the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB) from the Department…
The number of properties sold in the Helderberg Basin in 2012 by Harcourts Platinum shot up by an astronomical 80 percent compared with 2011.
Attributing the results – all the more impressive on the back of a generally sluggish national market – to a combination of “right” pricing and growing demand for turnkey housing, he says development sales in particular had increased “significantly” for his office over the past 12 months.
“We have encouraged and worked with developers to build completed or “Turnkey” homes, which buyers only pay for and take transfer of once the property is completed,” he explained. “Not only do these homes offer excellent value for money but the banks are more comfortable with financing them than “plot-and-plan” options. Buyers are aware of this and…
If you’re not sure whether to sell your current home or stay put, draw up a “Ben Franklin” list.
That’s the advice of Richard Gray, CEO of Harcourts Real Estate SA, who says business leaders, politicians and ordinary people throughout the world rely on Ben Franklin lists to help them make difficult decisions.
“A Ben Franklin list, named for Benjamin Franklin who was one of the founding fathers of United States, facilitates the decision-making process by not only listing but also weighting the pros and cons,” he explains. “It’s therefore an excellent guide for undecided sellers who are nervous about making the wrong decision. Moving home is a major life event for most people, hence the importance of ensuring that your reasons for selling are sound. If you have any doubts, draw up a list with the pros on one side and the cons on the other. Then…
Thousands of runners are expected to participate in one of the country’s premier 32km road races this year: the newly rebranded Harcourts Alan Robb 32km.
The race is run in honour of and named after four times Comrades winner Alan Robb, the popular road race is hosted by the Germiston Callies Harriers Club.
“While other sporting events are being cancelled or losing their sponsors as a result of the economic downturn, The Harcourts real estate group has stepped up to the plate with the signing of a three year deal with our club,” said Les Black, chairman of Germiston Callies Harriers Club. “The Alan Robb is our flagship 32km road race and we are delighted that its future has been secured.”