Residential property market along the Atlantic Seaboard is increasingly becoming a buyer’s market

THE residential property market along the Atlantic Seaboard is increasingly becoming a buyer’s market, with the sales of apartments dropping 21% in October from a year earlier.

Steven Delit of RE/MAX Living Atlantic, says this reflects a trend that emerged in February this year, with sales for every month of this year lower than the year-earlier month. Delit says only in January were sales higher than in the comparative month last year.

He says October was the worst month this year in terms of sales on the Atlantic Seaboard.

The Atlantic Seaboard is the “metronome” that sets the pace for the rest of the residential property market in Cape Town, he says, and indications are that the general residential market in Cape Town has slowed down.

“There are fewer buyers around and people are more cautious,” says Delit.

Many people are experiencing “cash-flow problems” because their investments in apartments are not delivering the rentals they had been expecting.

But Delit is still optimistic about Cape residential property and says agents now have to “work harder and smarter”. As long as the economy remains stable, the residential market will remain strong, he says.

Sotheby’s International Realty executive director Barak Geffen says he would not go as far as to say the residential market is a “buyers’ market” as this implies there is still another boom on the horizon.

“While I believe there is sustainable growth in the long and the medium term, in the short term the property market is consolidating. Sales volumes are down and prices are rising at a much slower rate. The drop in volumes could indicate a slump in demand and this can last up to three years.”

Geffen says it may be a while before SA’s residential market sees another dramatic uptick.

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