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PROPERTY: Cape Town’s Southern Suburbs Homes

 



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When it comes to investing in property, Cape Town’s Southern Suburbs, a large residential belt that lies on the southern slopes of Table Mountain between and around the M5 and M3, remains one of the busiest in the city.

This is according to Seeff’s manager for the area, Debbie Fannin, who says the area includes a number of the city and country’s top ranked suburbs, and stretches roughly from Mowbray, past Bishopscourt, Rondebosch, Newlands, Claremont, Kenilworth, Constantia and Tokai to Westlake.

Last year, the area clocked up real estate sales of almost R5.8 billion, about R1 billion more than in 2013, showing an increase of 21%.

Fannin says Seeff’s sales of almost R1.1 billion are a record and it was by and large a bumper year for the whole area, with buoyant demand, an abundance of buyers and properties selling almost as fast as agents could list them.

Offers were coming in at anywhere from within 5% and 10% to full asking price and in some cases at upwards of 10% more than the asking price.

While the average selling price of sectional title property increased by only 8% to around R1.3 million, she says freehold homes now sell for around R4 million on average, a phenomenal 25% more than in 2013.

Part of the attraction of the area is that it offers anything from starter and student flats priced below the R1.2 million mark to lovely family homes at upwards of R2.5 million along with luxury freehold and estate houses that sell for upwards of R9 million to well over R20 million at the top-end of the market.

Fannin says the sectional title sector, although accounting for only about 30% of all activity, has seen a particularly good year. She says their agents, Sean Guy and Belinda Keys, alone for example, sold a flat a week last year.

In general, the sub-R8 million price band has been the busiest, with over 90% of all sales. Notably though, last year saw the highest number of R20 million plus trophy home sales since pre-2007/8, with 11 sales ranging in price to around R23.5 million in Constantia and as much as R49 million and R69 million in Bishopscourt.

The rental market too remains buoyant, from young job entrants, professionals and student apartments around the R6 000 to R8 000 per month mark to family homes ranging from R18 000 to R60 000 per month for a top-end home in Constantia and Bishopscourt.

Fannin says Seeff, for example, concluded rental contracts worth some R46 million last year with agents Jacqui Wheeler and Sonya Garisch, concluding 37 new lease agreements in November and December alone.


With Table Mountain on the one side, the Atlantic Ocean to the other and the Cape winelands to the north-east, including the area’s own wine region, the oldest in the country, the Constantia Wine Valley, the location is prime.

Fannin says part of the attraction is the excellent infrastructure, amenities and access to top class education, from pre-school to post graduate. The area is home to around 160 schools, the highest concentration of schools per square kilometre in the country, along with UCT, one of the top universities in Southern Africa and several other tertiary educational institutions.

For the sport enthusiast, there is Newlands cricket and rugby, the nearby Athlone football stadium and a host of sport clubs and golf courses.

Aside from many neighbourhood convenience stores, Cavendish Square is ranked as one of the best shopping malls in the country and Cape. Main Road, which winds almost centrally through the entire Southern Suburbs, bustles with business nodes, shops and boutiques, coffee shops, restaurants and bars.

Also in the area, is the world-renowned Kirstenbosch gardens, the Tokai forest and other green belt and communal areas for walking, hiking and cycling.

While top class infrastructure is right on hand, the Southern Suburbs still offer the best of suburban living, says Fannin.

It gets more rain than other areas in the metro and is green, almost year-round with trees, often old Oaks lining the roads. Although not entirely free of the south-easter, many areas are quite wind-sheltered.

On the Constantia, Bergvliet and Tokai side, it gets more rural with the lovely vineyards of the wine valley, equestrian trails and sprawling estates.

The Southern Suburbs have not only weathered the economic downturn well, but have also shed much of the recession hangover. This is one of the top performing real estate belts in the country with proven investment value and strong capital growth.

Even at the height of the recession, the area retained its value despite the drop in demand, says Fannin. Over the last five years, the area has generally seen its sales values more than double.

Indications are that we head into 2015 on solid ground, says Fannin. “While many of the agents are still struggling with tight inventory levels, the buoyant activity has seen most of the old stock being sold, paving the way for some exciting new listings to come onto the market,” she says.


 
 
 
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