29 Nov 2012
The Cape coastal and holiday property market is starting to show signs of recovery.
This is according to Leon and Hanli Pretorius, Rawson Properties’ franchisees for Witsand, who say they have seen renewed interest from both Cape and upcountry buyers this summer – something not experienced for two to three years.
Witsand, a small fishing village 300km from Cape Town, situated both on the coast and on the Breede River, is famous for its fishing and for the large whale population that migrates to the nearby San Sebastian Bay each year.
With a total population of approximately 300 people, Witsand has long attracted the more discerning Cape holidaymakers, some of whom have had homes for four or five generations. Its appeal, says Leon Pretorius, relies largely on the fact that it is unspoilt and peaceful.
He says although the area has more expensive homes, the demand is almost exclusively for houses priced from R800 000 to R2.5 million. Homes priced above that level, he says, tend to stick on the market.
“The big difference between the conditions now and those of 18 to 24 months ago is that sellers are at last accepting our estimates and pricing what the market will pay.”
Also attracting interest at the moment, says Hanli Pretorius, are the suites and rooms available for sale from developer Roelf Loubser and other private owners at the three star Breede River Lodge. These can be priced as low as R220 000 for a bachelor unit, but can also have price tags as high as R2.3 million for a unit with four en suite bedrooms.
The suites at Breede River Lodge usually come fully furnished and buyers are required to pay a R14 per square metre levy per month. This, however, can be partially or wholly recouped by putting units into a rental pool. Leon says they manage the rental pool, which has achieved 120 to 500 bed nights per month for the last six months.
Good buys available include a three bedroom home in Witsand, which is located in a boomed area and offers a river view. This property is priced at R1.3 million.
A second home on the market offers six bedrooms, five bathrooms with three lower level garages, a gourmet kitchen with granite countertops and a braai room. It is on the market for R3.2 million.
One of the best buys available at the Breede River Lodge is a three bedroom (all en suite) unit with unimpeded views of the river. It is selling at R 1.75 million.
Hanli says, with demand increasing, now would be a good time to buy because today’s prices will begin to rise steadily from here on.
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