Weekly Newsletter
Friday, 14 August, 2009
Property Search | Estate Agents | List your property

Edition 32 of 2009, Friday, 14 August 2009

Dear Reader

The Reserve Bank took markets and analysts by surprise yesterday, cutting lending rates despite stubborn price pressures in a bid to help jolt the economy out of recession. SA appeared to be “lagging” a global recovery and “adverse economic conditions” had tilted risks to the inflation outlook downwards, governor Tito Mboweni said. That was the reason given for the unexpected decision of the Bank’s monetary policy committee (MPC) to cut its key repo rate half a percentage point to 7% — its lowest in more than three years. (Business Day)

What does it mean for you the homeowner or how does it help your current situation? To put it simply, when the Reserve bank cut the repo rate the financial institutions follows by cutting the interest rate. It reduces what it cost to borrow money from the banks. This encourage businesses and consumers to spend. Well, if you are a homeowners with an adjustable-rate mortgages, you like it. If you have an adjustable rate home equity loan, you like it. If you are a homeowners with a good credit rating and can refinance at lower rates, you like it. If you are a potential homeowner looking for that first home, you like it. Do you think that as a homeowner that the time is right to fix your interest rate on your mortgage or should you wait a little longer? Send your viewpoints to news@cyberprop.com

Are you thinking of upgrading your property or even looking at building that dream home? Advice from Bill Rawson, Chairman of the Rawson Properties group and Gerhard Kotzé, CEO of the ERA South Africa property group;

  • Now is a good time to undertake building upgrades, but the cost of truly skilled work can be prohibitively high, says Rawson
  • Don’t hire a builder before you know all about him

Centre of the Klein Karoo and 'ostrich-feather capital' of the world, as well as having the famous Cango Caves. A lush oasis catering for adventure, cultural and geological tourists and one of the most-visited towns in the country. Focus on, Oudtshoorn, Garden Route, South Africa

The editors


>> Real Estate news - Global credit crunch and prospects for Africa

It is common knowledge nowadays that we are in a global recession. This article will attempt to address why we are in a global recession and how it will affect Africa.

Why are we in a global recession?

In an attempt to end the recession caused by the dot com bust the Federal Reserve, in 2003, kept interest rates unreasonably low (at 1%) for one year...

>> Let the rates roll!

The Monetary Policy Committee of the South African Reserve Bank decided to reduce the central bank's repo rate by 50 basis points to 7.0 percent, Governor Tito Mboweni announced on Thursday.

Economists react to the rates decision...

>> Mboweni boosts your bank balance - for now

Last interest rate cut? Some economists think so.

Your home loan and other debts have just got cheaper and the economy has just received a welcome fillip in the form of SA Reserve Bank Governor Tito Mboweni's latest repo rate cut of 0.5%, bringing the rate to 7%. Commercial banks are expected to follow suit in cutting the prime interest rate they give their customers to 10,5% following Thursday's announcement.

Absa was first to announce it would lower its prime interest rate, from Friday 14 August, issuing its statement minutes after Mboweni had delivered his...

>> The big question: what sort of property to buy?

The uncertain economic climate has prospective homebuyers and investors queuing for advice about the best investment opportunities.

“The biggest question on buyers and investors’ minds today is what sort of property they should buy,” says Martin Schultheiss, CEO of the Harcourts Africa property group...

>> New, existing home prices: Gap widens

The price difference between new and existing houses was the largest in six years during second quarter 2009.

This means that a potential buyer looking to buy an average new house will be paying R288,400 more than he would for an average existing house.

This big difference can be ascribed to the fact that prices of existing houses have been falling while the price of new ones are still growing, even though the increase in building costs decelerated recently...

>> Mortgage stress surging

South African mortgage distress jumped to a record high in the first half of the year as falling home prices battered homeowners. According to results released from Alliance Group’s Distressed Asset Index, which tracks various distressed asset classes, the residential property market is still in a recession and despite increased sales activity and lower interest rates, property distress is growing.

According to Alliance Group Chief Executive, Rael Levitt, the residential...

>> Property increasingly part of middle class investors' retirement portfolio

While some investors are holding back on property, many increasingly accept that two, three or more properties should form part of their retirement investment portfolio and that now is a good time to buy, says Bill Rawson, Chairman of Rawson Properties.

“Previously, investment of this kind was confined largely to people in the industry – estate agents, developers and builders – but now we find people from all walks of life investing steadily in property...

>> Existing stock will increase in value as new stock shortages impact on the market

There have been very few residential property developments in South Africa for some 24 months now – bank restrictions on development and bond lending have almost closed down this type of initiative, says Bill Rawson, Chairman of Rawson Properties.

“Only exceptional projects with absolutely assured sales have been able to attract funding,” said Rawson, “but, although this is regrettable, the lack of new stock will inevitably make existing stock far more valuable. In all our franchises we can see a situation arising in which the pent-up demands for homes will lead to price rises in the next twelve months...

>> Demanding property sellers still refusing to recognise the market conditions

The recession is still biting severely - but some property sellers persist in not accepting this reality.

“Every major estate agency at the Cape has in the last few months warned against over-pricing,” said Anton du Plessis, CEO of Vineyard Estates, recently, “but we still come across clients who rigidly refuse to accept a valid valuation. In some cases they have even suspected us of bringing down the price in order to get a fast sale. No matter how much accurate market information we produce to substantiate our valuations, they just will not accept reality...

>> Leases: what tenants should know

Before signing the rental lease, know what's expected of you - expert.

So often we hear of tenants who refuse to pay rent because something is wrong with the property they are living in and the landlord has failed to fix it.

Realestateweb.co.za spoke to Karien Hunter, attorney from AMC Hunter Inc in Durban, on what one needs to know about a lease...

>> Chas Everitt Home MakeOver - A Home Makeover with a Difference!

>> Now is a good time to undertake building upgrades, but the cost of truly skilled work can be prohibitively high, says Rawson

In a recent statement Bill Rawson, Chairman of the Rawson Properties group, went on record as saying that, with building costs up 55% in three years and, although likely to level off, showing absolutely no signs of returning to previous levels, the sooner those contemplating improvements to their homes or investment properties get them started, the better....

>> Don’t hire a builder before you know all about him

As the economic downturn takes its toll and company liquidations increase it becomes more important than ever to check the track record of any builder you consider hiring to work on your home.

Gerhard Kotzé, CEO of the ERA South Africa property group, has sounded the alarm bells in this respect, pointing out that the instance of defaulting contractors and dubious business practices appears to be rising in the current market...

>> Aida goes to the rescue of abandoned development

An abandoned housing development that was fast becoming a blot on the landscape now has a new lease on life thanks to the intervention of a civic-minded Western Cape estate agent.

Skippers Cove in Saldanha Bay was abandoned about two years ago when the developers ran into financial trouble. Partially finished homes that were sold off-plan were abandoned and vandals moved in and started stripping the structures.

>> The process of raising general levies in sectional title schemes

1) Before every annual general meeting (AGM) the trustees are obliged to prepare an itemised estimate of anticipated income and expenses (a budget) of the body corporate for the following financial year.

2) Copies of this budget must be sent out to all persons entitled to attend the AGM with the notice calling the AGM. Notice of the AGM must be given at least 14 days before the date of the AGM if no special or unanimous resolutions are to be considered...

>> News from Realestateweb

Commercial Shopping mall robbery shocker – Sapa

Police promise action to curb one-a-day mall robberies.

Police will be given more firepower and more visibility after a spate of robberies at shopping malls, the Gauteng Department of Community Safety said on Wednesday...

>> In the area...

The areas we are going to take a closer look at this week are;

  • Richards Bay
  • Krugersdorp
  • Hout Bay
  • Mafikeng
>> In the area 1 – Richards Bay

Richards Bay property on track to boom again

A flurry of development in Richards Bay is setting the Eighties boom-town up to emerge again as a serious contender for costal property investment.

So says Lionel Foster, principal of leading local agency Harcourts Richards Bay who notes that a number of major developments are poised to change the image of Richards Bay...

>> In the area 2 – Krugersdorp

New Krugersdorp estate already selling

Although the new Silver Valley estate near Krugersdorp has only just been launched, some 20 stands have already been sold to eager buyers.

So says Estelle Marais, sales manager of the Chas Everitt International West Rand franchise, which has the mandate to market the development. “The stands and homes on this estate are well-priced and offer good value for money...

>> In the area 3 - Hout Bay


Demand has been held back by recession but is now pent-up, says Mercer.

Hout Bay, where Anne Porter Knight Frank now have a branch following their purchase of Matt Mercer’s agency, is “taking off as a residential area”, says Lanice Steward, MD of Anne Porter Knight Frank...

>> In the area 4 - Mafikeng

Mining a boon to Mafikeng

There is a “quiet boom” going on the little Northwest town of Mafikeng, thanks to increased platinum mining in the area, and both house prices and rentals here are still climbing...

>> Focus on Oudtshoorn, Garden Route, South Africa

World-renowned for the Cango Caves and as the Ostrich Capital, but there's much more to Oudtshoorn than just that!

Surrounded by natural beauty, Oudtshoorn is situated at the foot of the majestic Swartberg Mountain range. Numerous rivers, streams and falls have their origins in the Swartberg, Outeniqua and Kamanassie ranges around the town...

>> View Properties in the Garden Route
>> View Properties in Oudtshoorn

>> Property of the week

Garden Route, Oudtshoorn

Set on 56ha and made up of 3 different titles, it has an agricultural component(currently lucern and horse breeding), the main home and a guest farm component consisting of 3 upper 4 star guest cottages...

Search for property in your area

Enter City/Suburb:
>> Green Star SA Rating System well on its way in SA

The race is on - which will be the first Green Star SA rated building in South Africa?

The Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA), after launching the first tool in the Green Star SA green building rating system toolset, Green Star SA Office v1, in November of last year, has had registrations from several buildings thus far...

>> Software at its best!

Cell Phone enquiries from the public

Buyers driving past your advertising boards will be able to see an unique Internet Number allocated to the specific property. They will then SMS that number to 35476 and will receive an SMS back with all the details of the property. At the same time the agent / agency will also be informed of a potential buyer. How's that for technology working for you! The cost - mahala! Free to all CyberAgent subscribers.

Here's a diagram on the way this process will work...

  1. Agent captures the details of the property and pictures into CyberAgent
  2. Agent updates the property to the Internet
  3. The Internet server sends back a unique number for that property
  4. Agent puts up his "For Sale" board together with our SMS board
  5. Potential buyer sees the "SMS" board and SMS's the unique number to the Internet server
  6. The Internet server sends back an SMS with all the property details and a link to the website where he/she can view pictures on the property

If you would like to know more about the above features and benefits that CyberAgent offer, visit: www.cyberagent.co.za or email: sales@cyberprop.com

For Sale Property:
Eastern Cape Freestate Gauteng Kwazulu Natal Mpumalanga North West Northern Cape Limpopo
Western Cape

To Rent Property:
Eastern Cape
Gauteng Kwazulu Natal North West Western Cape