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Why millennials love renting in Joburg’s Soweto

21 Oct 2019

Soweto is home to around 40% of the total Johannesburg population and this coupled with the fact that not many people are able to afford to buy property in the current economic climate is fuelling Soweto’s rental market.

This three bedroom home in Dobsonville, Soweto, has open-plan living areas and a paved yard. It is selling for R700 000 - click here to view

Other reasons contributing to the big rental demand are the many developments like the Lufhereng Development, Elephant Eye and Retlosebetsa currently taking place in the area, say Khosi Sibiya and Phindi Mphahlele, owners of Seeff’s Branch in Soweto.

The area is also a big tourist attraction, bringing many visitors and entrepreneurs to the area and the easy access that Soweto offers to the Johannesburg city centre makes it a desirable place to reside.

The rental market here is continuously growing. This is illustrated by many queries they have recently received from either landlords looking to let their properties or tenants searching for rental accommodation, say Sibiya and Mphahlele.

This four bedroom, two bathroom home in Dhlamini, Soweto, is close to schools and amenities. It is available to rent at R7 000 per month - click here to view.

Areas such as Pimville, Diepkloof and Orlando are especially in high demand because of their proximity to amenities and workplaces, say the agents.

While areas such as Protea Glen and Mndeni, for instance, are not as popular due to the fact that they are a bit further away from everything, but reasonable rental rates are the norm here.

The greatest rental demand is definitely for property priced between R4 000 and R5 000 per month. Tenants prefer to be on the ground floor with easy access to a small garden, or outside space, as the demand for upstairs townhouse units is low.

Sibiya and Mphahlele say millennials are the largest generation residing in Soweto at the moment and they are also the group who rent the most.

This three bedroom, two bathroom home in Protea Glen, Soweto, is on the market for R660 000 - click here to view.

“Millennials are moving out of their parents’ homes and forming their own independent households, and like the generations before them, they prefer to rent before they buy,” say the agents.

Many middle-aged buyers who started off living in Soweto have also since left the area to buy property elsewhere, but Seeff is seeing the trend of many of them returning to the property market here - often deciding or only being able to afford to rent.

Sibiya and Mphahlele say the property values in Soweto’s 37 suburbs are continuously on the rise and because of this the area is increasingly appealing to a middle-class market.

This three bedroom home in Protea Glen, Soweto, is close to the mall. It is available to rent at R4 000 per month - click here to view.

Completed developments, the upgraded road infrastructure, the Rea Vaya bus system and commercial infrastructures have all added to making Soweto a place people want to invest and live in, which was not necessarily the case two decades ago.

Rental rates in Soweto at the moment are around R2 500 per month for a one bedroom apartment, R4 000 per month for a two bedroom apartment, R4 500 per month for small homes and R7 000 per month for large homes with two garages and possibly a swimming pool as well.

Areas in Soweto with the most affordable rental rates include Protea Glen, Bram Fischerville and Lufhereng and the most expensive rentals can be found in Diepkoof, Pimville and Dhlamini.

There is also a demand for student rentals in Pimville as it is close to the Soweto campus of University of Johannesburg. Prices for student rentals here range between R2 500 and R3 000 per month.

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