Home loans, prices and houses to buy

18 Dec 2012

Mortgage originator ooba report a moderate house price growth of 4.8 percent year-on-year to R880 475 in November.

Seeff Sandton is currently selling a Johan Slee designed home measuring 2 600 square metres and set on a stand size of 7 533 square metres in Sandhurst for R45 million.

In the same month, price growth of 3.0 percent on October’s figures was recorded.

Saul Geffen, ooba chief executive officer, says home loan approvals also increased in November 2012, up 30 percent on November 2011, while October was up 47 percent on the prior year.

For the 11-month period January to November 2012, ooba’s approvals were up 147 percent over the same period in 2009, and up 42 percent on 2011.

Geffen says house prices for first-time buyers grew 4.3 percent y/y to R666 317 and the percentage of first-time buyers among ooba’s total applications decreased 0.8 percent y/y to 51.7 percent.

He points out that ooba has also recorded an increase in buy-to-let applications, which in November accounted for almost 5 percent of the bond originator’s applications.

While this is nowhere near the peak buy-to-let application volumes of 14.3 percent, it is a jump on the previous month’s 3.8 percent, and could be influenced by the increasing rental yields recently reported by Tenant Profile Network Credit Bureau and investors’ improved perception of future property price growth.

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However, he says the average home loan deposit was down y/y by 1.2 percent to 16.6 percent of the purchase price but increased 23.0 percent month on month from 13.5 percent of the purchase price in October.

The average approved bond size increased 5.0 percent to R734 180 in October this year from R698 959 in October 2011.

The average initial decline ratio decreased 3.2 percent y/y to 46.0 percent in November and the percentage of applications that were declined by one bank but approved by another improved by 0.2 percent to 24.4 percent.

Saul Geffen, ooba chief executive officer, says home loan approvals also increased in November 2012, up 30 percent on November 2011, while October was up 47 percent on the prior year.

He says ooba’s approval rate which is the overall percentage of loans approved once ooba has shopped around to all banks was 65.2 percent in November approval rate, which takes into account loans approved after month-end, is currently 71.1 percent.

Geffen says market conditions are supported by a low interest rate environment coupled with subdued property price inflation and improved lending policies, and this is expected to continue into 2013.

For those looking to buy now, Western Cape homes offer value for money, says Lanice Steward, managing director of Knight Frank Anne Porter.

Steward says according to John Loos, FNB economist and property strategist, the average selling price of property in the Western Cape is R978 945, the highest average in the country.

Buyers tend to stay in the province while only 5.7 percent relocate to other parts of the country compared to 10 percent relocating from Port Elizabeth and 8.5 percent from Gauteng, according to the FNB report.

Steward points out that they are seeing a lot more activity in the market with many would-be buyers attending show houses of well priced homes.  

In some areas, she notes there are stock shortages and this is likely to get worse as sales start picking up.

Cape Town, she says is a city of choice for many buyers with 5 percent of sales comprising of foreign buyers compared to 2.1 percent of Gauteng buyers.

According to Seeff Properties, 2012 has been a better year than 2011 with 20 homes sold in the R20 million and above price bracket in the Western Cape.

Cape Town, she says is a city of choice for many buyers with 5 percent of sales comprising of foreign buyers compared to 2.1 percent of Gauteng buyers.

Samuel Seeff  says these homes were all on the Atlantic Seaboard, in Fresnaye, Clifton and Bantry Bay – with highest prices ranging from R30 to R50 million and two homes priced above R20 million have been sold in the Johannesburg area, both in Hyde Park, with R22 million being the highest price paid.

Seeff Sandton is currently selling a Johan Slee designed home measuring 2 600 square metres and set on a stand size of 7 533 square metres in Sandhurst for R45 million.

The home that features exquisite art works inside out is a buyer’s dream with all interiors befitting to the suburb’s most sought-after homes.

Among other things, it offers a spacious, gourmet kitchen, dining area, study, covered patio with skylights and a shallow reflecting pool looks onto the rim-flow swimming pool, and includes sauna and steam rooms, serving area with prep bowl, gas braai, pizza oven, cloakroom with toilet and basin, shower area with three showers, plus storage rooms, and ample space for dining/lounge suites, art gallery area as well as an entertainment area.

The garden above the gallery area has views over Sandton and Randburg.

Upstairs the spacious master suite has an enormous bedroom with gas fireplace and mantelpiece and huge sliders on two sides of the room, a second bedroom suite has a walk-in dressing room, bathroom en suite with bath, shower and basin.

It also has two downstairs bedrooms with bathrooms en suite, fitted desks and shelving and walk-in cupboards, which open onto the garden.

Other home features include 4 metre high ceilings throughout, flooring of natural sandstone, underfloor heating, air-conditioning in the entertainment basement, speakers in all of the rooms, and10 geysers. – Denise Mhlanga

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