2009: Market ‘set to improve’

Property owners under pressure to sell should do all in their power to hang on a little longer.

This is the advice of Young Carr, CEO of Aida National Franchises, who confidently expects that the market will turn for the better towards the middle of next year.

“The realistic view is that economic pressure will ease shortly: Interest rates are set to come down, the latest economic figures point to lower inflation, and fuel prices are also heading south. Not only will this put extra money in consumers’ pockets, but it will also strengthen consumer confidence, which will impact greatly on the property market.”

Carr adds, however, that the next few months offer great opportunities for investors. “There is very good value out there right now, and price growth is likely to escalate once the cycle turns.”

He says market conditions during the past year were indeed tough. “The upside for property consumers is that there was renewed focus on basics, which will ensure improved service levels in the property industry.

“At Aida we refocused on training and redirected capital expenditure for this purpose. Each and every Aida agent has benefited from refresher courses on basics and we have made bursaries to the tune of R9000 each available to all our agents to attain the professional qualifications now required by law.

“We have also strengthened our franchise network with resales in key areas and a notable development is interest from international franchisees, who see lucrative opportunities in the local market. We are also in the process of forging ties with international companies who want to establish a greater presence in the local market.”

Young says much of this interest stems from the prospects for the local property market that will flow from the country’s hosting of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. “We have seen increased interest from European buyers and investors who are coming to scout for property opportunities.

“All these factors combine to set the stage for a recovery. We at Aida have been hard at work during the past year to make sure that we will be first out of the starting blocks when the cycle turns. To this end we will launch a property club early next year that will offer added value to property buyers and investors.”

Article by: www.aida.co.za