Tough economy creates property opportunities

The tough property market has created good opportunities for investors who act on their conviction that better times are ahead.

This is the view of Paul Matthews, principal of the RealNet office in Gordon’s Bay, who says many buyers have recognised the opportunities in the market, with a number of smaller investors returning to the market. “They are capitalising on softening prices to upgrade or to re-invest,” he says.

“Moreover, for the first time in a long time, it is not all doom and gloom. There are indications that the tide is starting to turn - petrol prices are coming down and top economists are starting to show optimism that interest rates could soon follow suit - and that would be good news for the market as well as investors who act soon.”

Matthews adds that his team has weathered the storm. “While many estate agents in our area of operation in the Helderberg basin left the industry when the market tightened and interest rates spiked, we remained focused and continued to gain momentum.”

And the agency’s sterling performance recently netted it three performance awards from the RealNet group. Agent Linky Louw was named top agent for most units sold, highest commission earned and highest turnover, while Nick Winn was named as top negotiator. Matthews himself was awarded the coveted Chairperson’s Award for leadership, performance and contribution to the group.

He adds that sellers may be reluctant to sell in what everyone perceives to be a “down” market. “But the reality is that even if you realise less for your property than you might have liked, the chances are that you will regain that amount and more when you return to the market to buy again.

“There are strong indications that the market could be turning – so if you have equity in your property, or are contemplating a change, now might be a very good time to act,” he advises.

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