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Laid-back barefoot living in Langebaan

27 Sep 2015

With almost half a billion rand in sales coming from a notable 50% increase in the number of units sold last year, it is clear that holiday buyers are returning to the Cape’s West Coast.

This three bedroom house in Laguna Sands, Langebaan, has an open-plan kitchen and patio with braai and private garden. It is selling for R1.295 million - click here to view.

This is according to Pierre Germishuys, managing director for Seeff’s West Coast operations, who says on any given Friday afternoon, a stream of cars can be seen making their way along the R27 West Coast Road from Cape Town towards Langebaan for the weekend.

Germishuys says judging by the amount of Capetonians who now own property in the village, it can almost be described as another suburb of the mother city.

Following the 2007/8 market downturn, sales in the village plummeted by about 60%. Over the last two years especially, though, activity has been nicely on track.

According to Lightstone, last year’s sales, for example, amount to about 673 units worth almost R500 million. This is about 50% more in both unit and value terms from five years prior when only about 426 units to the total value of just over R250 million was recorded for the village.

The average house price is also up by R500 000 from around R1 million three years ago to about R1.5 million now.

Germishuys says with only about an hour’s drive from the city, Langebaan is also no longer just appealing to weekend and holiday home buyers, but is fast becoming a popular commuter town.

Strong demand for this is coming from the Saldanha side where there has been a steady influx of people and contract workers over the last two years, many of whom are opting to live in Langebaan.

This five bedroom house in Myburgh Park, Langebaan, offers open-plan living areas, a dining room with fireplace, study, entertainment area, braai room and wine cellar. It is priced at R10.8 million - click here to view.

A further boost is coming from Capetonians, and even buyers from upcountry who are able to work remotely.

Buyers from up north, especially around the Johannesburg metro, have also made a welcome comeback to the market, some looking for holiday homes while others are looking to relocate on a semi- or even full retirement basis.

Germishuys says it is also not just the traditionally older buyers that are now investing in the village, there has been a notable shift to younger buyers over the last two years.

All of this activity has been an excellent boost for the property market, propping up sales, especially of vacant stands, but also of holiday homes that have sold since early last year at prices ranging from upwards of R1 million to about R5 million.

Langebaan is not called the ‘jewel of the West Coast’ for nothing, he says. “With its pristine white beaches set around the turquoise waters of the Langebaan lagoon, it is picture-pretty. It is quite reminiscent of a Greek island, and the Mykonos casino and residential development further adds to this ambiance.”

Although now a bustling little village with a permanent population of about 7 700, it is still much about "laid-back barefoot living", yet with excellent facilities on hand, says Germishuys.

Aside from the casino, there is the Laguna shopping mall, 18-hole golf course and club and popular restaurants such as ‘Friday Island’ and the famous Strandloper for the freshest seafood right on the beach. For everything else, there is West Coast Mall down the road.

This property in Langebaan has five bedrooms, an open-plan kitchen, TV room, study, bar and braai room. It is on the market for R6.955 million - click here to view.

Germishuys says for families there are a number of schools, including two new private schools, Curro and Longacres.

With almost year-round sunshine, Langebaan is the ultimate water sport mecca, offering windsurfing, kite-surfing, yachting and water skiing to kayaking, angling and, of course, sunbathing.

He says there is also plenty to do for eco-enthusiasts. The area includes Ramsar Site, internationally acclaimed for its importance as a wetland. There is also the nearby West Coast National Park with load of wildlife including buck such as Kudu and Springbok. Aside from nature walks and marvelling at the wild flowers of the West Coast, there is birdwatching.

Langebaan offers predominantly freehold houses, totalling over 4 400, as well as a further 2 200-plus houses located in estates including the now sought-after Langebaan golf estate where stands are selling fast. There are also about 634 sectional title properties on offer in the village.

Germishuys says there are still many vacant stands up for grabs, but most of the bargains are gone. Prices now tend to start at around R400 000. Apartments start at around R800 000, while houses start at around R1.2 million on average.

This three bedroom house in Calypso Beach, Langebaan, offers open-plan living areas, a TV room and built-in braai. It is on sale for R3.995 million - click here to view.

Luxury homes range from around R2 million to R8 million, but top-end homes can range to as much as R30 million for a beachfront location.

The village also has an active holiday rental market, and in recent years the development around the Saldanha area has boosted the demand for long-term rentals. Daily rates now range from around R760 to R1 500 per day, and monthly rates from around R2 500 for a small flat to as much as R27 000 per month for a luxury home with good sea views.

Investors in apartments at the Club Mykonos development can expect even higher daily rates with a top-end unit fetching about R2 200 per night mid-week and about R3 350 per night over weekends. Prices for flats range from around R800 000 to about R2 million for a prime, two bedroom unit with sea views, he says.

Germishuys says according to the FNB Holiday Towns House Price Index, prices in holiday towns grew at around 11.6% by end of last year, although this has now slowed to about 10%. While price growth this year is expected to remain on the conservative side, it is still a good time to get into the market in this area, he says.
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