Consistently experiencing steady demand, the residential property market in Pietermaritzburg
continues to sustain steady sales despite the current slowdown experienced in many other areas of the country, reports Barbara Becker, area principal for Pam Golding Properties
"Once Pietermaritzburg attains metro status it will open doors for increased investment, boost infrastructural development and as a result this will have positive spin-offs for the property market," she says. "Liberty Midlands
Mall, which has proven hugely successful, has more than doubled in size and is a major drawcard for the area.
"Being the capital Pietermaritzburg has a sound existing infrastructure and is ideally centrally situated within easy reach of Durban
and the coast, the nearby scenic Drakensberg, and is en route to Johannesburg
. Leisure attractions including game reserves are just two hours away and the world renowned Midlands Meander is within easy reach. This city has retained its character and charm, and there remains a strong sense of sound family values, good quality of life – with a countrified atmosphere and along with that a more secure lifestyle.
"The fact that there's good value for money in our residential property market makes Pietermaritzburg very appealing for young and first time buyers. Two bedroom flats are still available for under R500 000 while brand new homes in residential developments can be had for prices ranging between R500 000 and R800 000. At Mkamba Gardens
, a 150 unit development with its own crèche and with 40 homes already completed and 50 sales to date, two bedroom homes are selling off-plan from R489 000 and three bedroom units from R596 000 to R728 000. At the secure development, Rivers End, set on 9.687ha within a green belt and in walking distance of the Liberty Midlands Mall only 47 sectional title apartments remain in phases one and two, priced from R490 000 with a R10 000 deposit required. The balance of the estate remains open parkland and wooded areas.
"In the middle market you can purchase a three bedroom, two bathroom home with double garage and swimming pool for under R800 000 and up to around the R1 million mark. For a spacious, upmarket four bedroom family home you'd pay between R2.5 million and R4 million. At the very top end of the market, luxurious homes in Wembley
sell for approximately R5 million, while in the prestigious Victoria Country Club
Estate magnificent homes of around 600sqm are being built at a total capital investment of R4-R6 million – capital outlays that reflect the strong confidence in the residential property market in the area," says Becker.
She says there's an ongoing demand from new buyers moving in to areas such as Scottsville
, drawn by the excellent schooling available in the Pietermaritzburg area, namely Cordwalles Preparatory School, Epworth
College, Maritzburg College, St Charles College, St Nicholas Diocesan School, St John's Diocesan School for Girls, St Anne's Diocesan College, The Wykeham Collegiate and Cowan House Preparatory School. "Other purchasers are those who prefer to live here and commute to work in Durban, which is really a 40-45 minute drive with the freeway easily accessible.
For the more upwardly mobile areas such as Muswell Hill
, Wembley, Chase Valley Heights
have strong appeal. For those seeking a character home, Pietermaritzburg is renowned for its quaint, restored Victorian homes – with their red brick and Broekie lace – with several currently marketed by PGP – are usually either situated in the central area, with others dotted around in the suburbs. Those in town are generally priced under R500 000 while others in areas such as Wembley are very spacious and priced up to the R2 million mark.
Other exceptional properties currently on the market through PGP include a six bedroom, five bathroom Victorian style home with 'castle' features, pressed ceilings, wooden floors and wrap around verandah and situated in Boughton
, priced at R4.5 million and a stately three bedroom home in Winterskloof
for R4.9 million. Photos:
1. This striking six bedroom, five bathroom home in Boughton has been beautifully restored and includes a spacious, terraced garden and separate two bedroom flatlet. Set on 6752sqm with a building area of 600sqm, this property would be ideal for a boutique hotel, professional offices or a B&B.
2. This quaint three bedroom home in Pietermaritzburg has Oregon floors and high ceilings and is centrally situated near schools. It is priced at R560 000.
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