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15 Apr 2013

The discovery of gold transformed Welkom from a humble farm into the second largest city in the Free State province, at a growth rate compared only to the metropolitan Johannesburg.

This three bedroom, two bathroom home has a modern kitchen and the bedrooms have sliding doors leading to the large garden. The property has a built-in bar, covered entertainment area and a swimming pool and it is on the market for R1.4 million - click here to view.

Another aspect that the city is known for is the efficiency of road traffic due to the use of traffic circles. With minimum use of stop signs and no traffic lights, the design of the roads has encouraged flow and has become an effective method of avoiding traffic jams.

Adrian Goslett, CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, says that property in the city central consists mainly of sectional title units at 87.97 percent and around 12 percent freestanding homes. He notes that for this reason, sectional title units consistently outperformed freestanding homes, sometimes by as many as ten to one sales transactions.

According to Goslett, while the total number of sales transactions dropped in the area from 2008 to 2009, the property market has seen growth and the number of sales has again seen an increase. However, no freestanding homes were sold in Welkom central during 2011.

This three bedroom, one bathroom home has a cosy kitchen, open living spaces and a loft. The property has secure parking, a garden and it is on the market for R550 000 - click here to view.

He says that while the average price of a sectional title unit has performed well from 2004 to this year, the average price of a freestanding home has been erratic. In 2006 the average price of a freestanding home dropped to R528 000 from R1 million seen the previous year, it then shot up to R2.202 million in 2007. The price dropped in 2008, only to reach a record high of R2.279 million in 2009. In 2012 the average price of a freestanding home was R650 000.

According to Lightstone, nearly half of the recent buyers in the area are between 50 to 64 years old, accounting for the largest percentage of existing homeowners in the area, along with 33.33 percent of the recent sellers. While those between 18 and 35 years old only account for 18.22 percent of the homeowners, they also made up 33.3 percent of the recent sellers. Unlike many other regions, only 5.88 percent of recent buying activity can be attributed to buyers between the ages of 36 and 49 years old.

Goslett says the most sought-after real estate is property that falls below the R400 000 mark. Homes sold for under R400 000, account for almost 73 percent of all properties sold from March 2012 to February 2013. The other homes sold during the same period were those priced between R400 000 and R800 000.

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