Weekly Property News
16 September 2011

Dear Reader

Who's to Blame? Cooperative Governance Minister Sicelo Shiceka is to be blamed for the delays in the investigations into alleged misuse of funds. This according to the Public Protector Thuli Madonsela. As the housing and residential market languishes in the struggle I wonder who we can blame for the poor performing property market that we are currently experiencing.

Headlines: Though listed property has become more attractive as an asset class, the opposite is true for buy-to-let investments, says FNB property strategist John Loos. Factors now counting against an investment in buy-to-let include the possibility of rising interest rates, weak capital growth prospects, gross income yields that remain in a relatively pedestrian 7%-8% range, and rapidly rising operating costs. Says Loos: “The dramatic increase in municipal rates and tariffs could make buy-to-let investments even more unattractive over the next few years. In addition it’s still not certain how changes to the Municipal Rates Amendment Bill could influence assessment rates payable on residential properties used for financial gain.” Latest data from FNB underlines the extent to which buy-to-let has lost its lustre. Only 8% of all housing sales concluded in the second quarter of 2011 went to buy-to-let investors, down from around 25% in the 2006/2007 boom days. Property investment - At crossroads

Market news: Ratings agency Fitch expects flat to mildly rising nominal house prices in South Africa over the coming years. The agency is in the process of revising its mortgage loss criteria for SA, with the performance of the economy and a decrease in housing affordability ratios since 2007 being key factors.
The agency noted during a teleconference on Thursday that as of the first quarter of 2011, nominal house prices had dropped 4.5% from their first quarter 2010 peak. A list of around 9000 distressed property sales covering the period 2005 to mid-2010 for each participating lender was obtained, with a strong bias towards auctions and repossessions. Property to remain weak

Modern technology makes for a more convenient life, but it also makes it a lot easier for con artists to pull off their schemes. Take letting a flat. You go online, you find a flat you're interested in, you call the number, get given the viewing details, visit the flat, decide you want to rent it, and are told to fill in a form, supply a few personal document and pay your deposit, which you do, via an electronic funds transfer (EFT) on your computer. That's easy - too easy. Con artist preys on flat seekers

The editor

In This Issue
Featured Property

Western Cape, Franschhoek, Deltacrest
Bed: 5 | Bath: 5
Exclusive Franschhoek lifestyle development with stables and vineyards This upmarket property offers top quality finishe...

CyberProp Property Count: 16/09/2011

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Properties for Sale: 144,068
Properties to Rent: 10,482

Local News

Property investment - At crossroads

Does it still make sense to hang on to buy-to-let investments, given the poor prognosis for house price growth over the next three to five years?

Property to remain weak

Ratings agency Fitch expects flat to mildly rising nominal house prices in South Africa over the coming years...

Interest rate policy options facing SARB

Since Easter this year, thinking first shifted to neutral (policy to be unchanged for long), with recent months increasingly hearing the case for more interest rate easing...

No recession for SA

SA could grow only 0.8 percent in the third quarter and by 1.7 percent in the fourth quarter, implying that the country is not likely to enter into recession, Peter Attard Montalto, economic analyst at Nomura International forecasts...

News for SA homeowners

Two really good pieces of news for SA homeowners and homebuyers have come to light this month and should really help to bolster our nascent market recovery, despite the volatile state of the global economy...

Better days ahead for SA mortgage lenders

SA banks, hard hit by large numbers of home loan defaults during the recent recession, are set for a much better time in the next few years because of the quality lending “books” they are building now. And so are their customers..

Property - Affordable housing

Are SA banks pricing in too much risk when lending to lower-income earners? It appears so. New research commissioned by FinMark Trust, in association with credit consultants Eighty20, suggests that banks may well be overestimating the risk of default among households typically earning less than R8000/month...

'Take fresh advice on property values'

The Garden Route property market has traditionally lagged other markets, and has consequently been slower than many others to recover from the recession...

Residential property

It seems that political in fighting between the new and old guard s at the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB) is threatening to derail efforts to restore the credibility of SA’s beleaguered real estate industry...

Bigger deposits bring big benefits

Many people are irked by the fact that 100% home loans are no longer freely available, but on the other hand it must be said that the bigger the cash deposit that potential homebuyers can make, the more benefit they will derive, even when interest rates are low...

Con artist preys on flat seekers

Modern technology makes for a more convenient life, but it also makes it a lot easier for con artists to pull off their schemes...

Casting the retail small-town catchment net

Almost 80% of people who live in Elim, Limpopo, shop in other cities. Now this is set to change with Twin City Development’s retail strategy for the new Elim Mall...

Eskom adamant SA power tariffs are ‘still low’

DESPITE SA being the only developing country in the world’s top 15 states in terms of electricity pricing, Eskom customer services head Tsholofelo Molefe said yesterday the tariffs were still low...

Proposed Retirement Village in Plattekloof: Facts vs Myths

A Retirement village has the potential of turning the wheel in a community and enhancing it, not degrading it...

The Herschel

The ongoing transformation of Claremont’s central precinct, which was initiated by Cavendish Square some 30 years ago will be taken a significant step forward by the announcement Oof a new project from Berman Brothers and Sandak-Lewin Developments, who have formed a joint venture to redevelop a prime site on the corners of Herschel Road and Herschel Close...

Greenways Golf Estate property sales picking-up during the last 12 months

Property sales in Greenways Golf Estate in the Strand has been showing a steady increase during the first 7 months of 2011 – relative to the 18 registered sales achieved during both 2009 and 2010 (about 1,5 sales per month)...

Focus On

Franschhoek, Western Cape, South Africa

Given to fleeing Huguenots in 1688, it was found that the climate is very similar to that in France, the settlers planted vines and today these wines are consumed throughout the world. Various attractions and historical sites...

>> Properties in Franschhoek
>> Properties in the Western Cape

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In the Area

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

  • Midrand
  • Waterkloof
  • Cape Town
In the area 1 - Midrand

Demand is growing for properties in areas on the Midrand periphery, such as Clayville and Tembisa, thanks to a more lenient approach by banks...

In the area 2 - Waterkloof

Waterkloof, the grand old lady of Pretoria’s eastern suburbs, is finding favour among younger buyers who want an exclusive address...

In the area 3 - Cape Town

Cape Town Grand Prix 'will open doors for business'

The proposed Cape Town Grand Prix should be seen as a 10-day business opportunity and not as a three-day sports event, says veteran motorsport organiser Dave McGregor.

To the editor

Dear editor,

Firstly, thank you for a brilliant platform for us to view our comments.

The Bill as I see it, is one of the many positive things Government has posed, the Consumer Protection Act being one of them. Sometimes it difficult for us to see things from a view the Government does. Be it our lifestyles or our plain ignorance. Believe me you, i try to be as objective as possible to issues of this nature bearing in mind that I am a consumer, just as well an investor.

We may feed and over indulge the masses, however, from personal experience without a doubt, i agree that the Rates Bill passed will iron out discrepancies and clearly distinguish residential from business.

There are many owners of residential properties, with poor structure, unprofessional layout, advertised as B&B’s, pricing on market related tarrifs, (hotel rates), which is totally unfair to any consumer. Hotel rates should be clearly defined based on the stars they carry, their professional stance to business & to the level of service! It is by no means a ‘standard’ for any resident/business owner to price accommodation based on the industry ‘norm’, because customer experience matters!

Thank you
Sushilla Ramballi

Share your comments with us by sending it to news@cyberprop.com

Local news continue

National accolades for Chas Everitt agents

One of the most noticeable effects of the property slump in 2008/09 was the sharp decline in the number of registered estate agents – and the lack of opportunity for young people to build a permanent career enter the real estate industry...

GBCSA Convention and Exhibition launches the official provisional programme

GBCSA proudly announces the launch of the official provisional programme for our 4th Annual Convention and Exhibition to be held at the CTICC in Cape Town: 26 - 28 of October 2011...

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