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Homes to suit all property buyers

08 Dec 2011

While some residential markets may be struggling thanks to flat house price growth, others are experiencing a surge in increased buyer activity.

This 350 square metre L-shaped, single storey, five bedroom, four bathroom house in Bergvliet is on the market through Anne Porter Knight Frank at a price of R3.25 million.

Lanice Steward, managing director of Anne Porter Knight Frank (APKF), says even with unimpressive house price growth statistics, there are always pockets in a market that do well.  

Areas such as Lower Constantia and Bergvliet are good examples.

She says Bergvliet has in the two or three years become the flavour of the month and its image transformed from that of a precinct on the fringe of the better areas to one which is definitely an integral part of them.

This trend has been reinforced by an influx of young upwardly mobile couples who see Bergvliet as an acceptable alternative to Constantia. 

Buyers modernise and upgrade the homes they purchase, she says.

In Cape Town, Parklands is one of the most idyllic family suburbs in the Western Cape, according to Caron Leslie, broker/owner of RE/MAX Property Associates, which operates in Blouberg, Parklands, Table View and Sunningdale.

Leslie notes that Parklands properties are popular among first time buyers, young families and investors.

She says data from Lightstone indicates that close to 42 percent of recent buyers in Parklands were aged between 18 and 35 years old.

Parklands’ location allows for easy access to major highways, upmarket shopping centres, schools, medical practices and entertainment nodes that attract buyers.

New schools are being built in the area and the new BRT bus system that operates in the suburb makes it easy for those commuting to the Cape Town city centre, she says. 

RE/MAX Property Associates is selling a 288 square metre double-storey Tuscan-style home in Parklands for R1 595 000.

“Provided that homes are well maintained and the market trends are positive, Parklands buyers should enjoy good equity growth.”

She says buyers should plan on spending at least five or six years in the property before selling in order to achieve reasonable returns

Prices for family homes range from smaller starter homes with standard finishes priced at R750 000 up to larger, luxury homes with high-end finishes selling for R2.5 million.

Pam Golding Properties (PGP) reports that investors continue to buy homes in the Karoo area because of affordable property prices in the area.

According to Wayne Rubidge, PGP manager in the Karoo, for many buyers, the Karoo is becoming a must-have in the property portfolio.

Properties in the R350 000 price range are attracting significant interest and buyers are seeing the Karoo as a region that offers great long term value and an affordable lifestyle investment.

He explains that most affordable historic homes are found in the lesser known smaller Karoo towns such as Murraysburg, Aberdeen, Phillipstown, Steynsberg and Britstown to name a few.

“If one buys a historic home at the right price the intrinsic value of these homes seems to make them a good investment as there are a limited number of such properties.”

He says new versions of these homes offer a modern lifestyle but they cannot replicate the authentic historic value and character inherent in an original Karoo home.

Buying a Karoo home in one of the lesser known, generally smaller towns at the right price could take the form of an un-restored Karoo cottage, which can be acquired for under R300 000 or a restored larger home for upwards of R500 000, he says.

In the equally popular R500 000 price range in these lesser known towns the options revert to larger, grand restored homes often located on large erfs and generally situated in the older parts of these smaller Karoo towns.

For example, he says one of the oldest homes in Murraysburg in the Western Cape’s Karoo is currently on the market for R560 000.

Priced at R560 000 this property in Murraysburg is one of the oldest in the town of Karoo with two Victorian cottages, windmill and reservoir. This property is on the market through Pam Golding Properties.

The property includes two Victorian cottages on a large erf of 2 855 square metres with a windmill and reservoir and all the trimmings of a great Karoo home.

Rubidge says the Karoo provides great value, is an ideal investment for an affordable retreat, a second home, or as a first time property investment among other options.

In Murraysburg, it is possible to buy an un-restored Karoo-style home with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, wooden floors and windows, for R236 500.

With the right type of attention and restoration a property such as this will be a good investment in the medium term, he says.

Local residents in the Karoo form part of buyers active in the market.

The Karoo is also described as a first time buyers' dream because of affordability and the location’s enviable lifestyle and leisure destination, he says.

PGP Karoo has identified around 40 homes and properties in the R350 000 price range or below.

Vacant stands are priced between R20 000 and R50 000, some spacious, and could even include a windmill or reservoir, stone wall or other unique Karoo features.

He adds that 10 plots in Phillipstown in Upper Karoo in the Northern Cape are available for purchase, ranging in size from 800 square metres to 4 000 square metres.- Denise Mhlanga

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About the Author
Denise Mhlanga

Denise Mhlanga

Property journalist at

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