18 Jan 2013
At no stage in the last 20 years have coastal and holiday properties been pitched at prices so much below the average.
This is according to Bill Rawson, Chairman of the Rawson Property Group, who says these are typically 30 to 50 percent under the previous boom era levels and could remain there for a few more months.
Emil Weiss, franchisee for Rawson Properties Langebaan, agrees and adds that buyer interest is once again on the increase.
He says judging by the responses to their advertising and the number of walk-in enquiries they are having, he is confident they will achieve 20 sales before the end of this month and there are many homes and stands for sale in Langebaan that can be had at a good price.
Weiss says his stock list has 300 vacant stands, the majority of which were bought by buyers when the economy was on a roll but which are now being offloaded. In some cases, stands bought at ± R300 000 have re-sold for R100 000 and his agency has a few where the asking price is R150 000. He says the majority of sales taking place are below R250 000, with the average sale now pitched at R180 000.
Weiss says there is good value on the stands in the well-protected Langebaan Golf Estate. Here, buyers can use one of the estates approved builders and build a new home priced one third lower than those of SA’s big city builders. This means that, observing the estate’s ruling that no home can be smaller than 175 square metres, it is possible to get a new two bedroom house for under R1 million.
Weiss says prices on the lagoon and beach fronting stands can still be high, but are also well off their previous peaks.
In the housing market, Weiss says buyers are showing an interest, with the vast majority expecting to buy in the R800 000 to R1.5 million bracket – where the bulk of Rawson Properties’ stock is.
Rawson Properties have several homes which fall into the criteria demanded by the discerning international market and these are priced at up to R9 million. "However, although I foresee the situation changing, at this stage interest in luxury properties is at a very low level,” he says.
Weiss explains that official government recognition has been given to the Saldanha Industrial Development Zone. This is now near Namakwa Sands and Saldanha Steel and this factor will increasingly push up property prices in the area. "Already R30 million in sales has been notched up and more sales are in the offing."
Also likely to boost prices is Namakwa Sands’ discovery of the world’s largest deposits of high value minerals (such as titanium) at Bitterfontein. These ores (and the beneficiated products derived from them) will be exported through the Saldanha harbour and this will add greatly to the area’s prosperity.
Although sales have only recently picked up, Weiss says the rental market has been ‘very satisfactory’ for years now. This means that buy-to-let investors should be placing this area high on their priority list, he says.
Homes valued at under R1 million are likely able to achieve 5 to 7 percent returns from the day of occupation and it has been shown that new arrivals, especially those moving for work in the steadily growing industries in the area, prefer to rent for the first six to 18 months before making a decision to buy.
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