Weekly Newsletter
Friday, 17 October, 2008
Property Search | Estate Agents | List your property

Edition 40 of 2008, Friday, 17 October 2008

Dear Reader

The AA (Automobile Association of South Africa) said this week that it is unlikely for the fuel price to go down. What about the interest rate? Will we ever know? We will have to wait and see.

Tony Clark, MD of Rawson Properties predicts that a drop in the interest rate could take place as early as December 2008. Clarke predicts drop in interest rates soon

Then on the other hand with the rand weakening and above target inflation rates Moody's Economy.com says it is unlikely that interest rates will come down well into next year.

All this leaves the consumer with the question should I buy property or should I rent?

Sometimes rent is dead money and sometimes it is not. If house prices are rising and interest rates are looking good it is always a good time to buy property. If house prices are falling and interest rates are high it is not always a good time to buy. It might be to your interest to rather rent and put away what you save for a deposit for when the market has recovered and the time is right to buy. The best advice is to look at your financial situation and if you are in your comfort zone to buy a property then do it and if not, rather rent.

Donald Trump, American business magnate, real estate developer, socialite, television personality and author has signed a 10 year agreement with a South African businessman to develop property in South Africa. Real Estate news - Trump to Open South Africa Property

With interest rates so high it is important to look at the bonds on your property and get the best rate possible. The "standard rate" is the amount of interest that you would pay if you got no discount. This according to valuer and estate agent Mike Spencer, Are you getting the cheapest bond? According to him discounts are given for the following reasons:

  • Good credit record;
  • High value bond;
  • High deposit, low percentage bond against purchase price/value;
  • Multiple bonds;
  • Use of numerous services at the lending bank; and
  • If you are a high income client

Go West! This is the message we get this week. From spring wildflowers to whale-watching, surfing, fishing or simply long walks on the beach, the Cape West Coast has much to offer those in search of a beachside holiday home or a permanent retreat from the rat race. The area is growing in popularity as a full-time residential alternative, while at the same time maintaining its reputation as a highly sought-after holiday destination. In the area...

The editor


>> Real Estate news - Trump to Open South Africa Property

Donald Trump recently announced that his real estate company will move into South Africa in a joint venture with local businessman Neill Bernstein. The two real estate moguls will work on a variety of properties, including golfing, hotel and residential developments. They have signed a 10 year agreement, and the next few years are expected to produce a myriad of new properties for sale...

>> SA homeowners not alone in facing tough times

Hard-pressed South African homeowners at least have the consolation of knowing that they are not alone in battling with a poor property market and that inevitably conditions will improve.

That’s the view of top property man Mark Friend, vice president of Realogy Holdings, the holding company for a number of leading real estate organisations including ERA...

>> Clarke predicts drop in interest rates soon

The Rawson Property Group's sales in September were the best they have achieved in the last eleven months. This, says Tony Clarke, the MD, indicates that the South African residential property market is at last on a path to recovery.

After last week's welcome South African Reserve Bank decision to leave the interest rates as they are, Clarke predicts that the first long-awaited drop in the rates could take place as early as this coming December...

>> Surviving the crash of 2008

Strap yourself in; clean up your financial act. Things set to look worse before they get better.

Although the world was awash with news about plummeting stock markets, troubled financial systems and expectations of global recession this week, some local estate agency bosses were quite cheerful about the state of the local market...

>> Are you getting the cheapest bond?

Valuer and estate agent Mike Spencer of Platinum Global, Bloemfontein, offers tips to Realestateweb visitors on how to pay less for your home loan.

With interest rates so high it is important to look at the bonds on your property and get the best rate possible. The "standard rate" is the amount of interest that you would pay if you got no discount. Discounts are given for the following reasons...

>> Property industry sheds agents

Large numbers of estate agents have been forced out of business by the severe slump in the property market, those in the industry say.

Lew Geffen Sotheby's International Realty estimates that 30 percent to 40 percent of agents have left the industry since the end of the boom about a year ago...

>> Keeping it in the family

With the worsening economic situation causing many people to lose their jobs, families are being forced to tighten their belts. For many, one ideal way to save money is to combine living expenses by moving in with other family members.

"This is leading to an increased demand for properties that can accommodate extended families," says Mike Bester, CEO of Realty 1 International Property Group. "It’s common practice in some cultures and with the western model of the nuclear family no longer always practical in today’s economic environment, substantial savings can be achieved if families are prepared to share accommodation."

>> How to unlock value in your commercial property investment

Sky rocketing interest rates have impacted the property industry globally. And the impact it’s had on the local market is already showing. The demand for space in the commercial office market is still holding its own, but in time we’ll most probably see higher vacancies in industrial property.

Although we are witnessing a shift in demand, it’s not something completely unique. Even in a market down turn it’s possible to maximise your property investment and unlock value in your property. Here are some tips...

>> Tax incentives for employers who transfer low-cost residential units to employees

Included in the draft Revenue Laws Amendment Bill is a provision (section 13sept) aimed at encouraging employers to transfer ownership in low-cost houses or apartments to employees. Tax Partner at Cameron & Prentice Chartered Accountant, David Warneke, explains, that while this provision may appear to be aimed predominantly at farmers, the wording of the provision certainly does not restrict it only to these taxpayers...

>> Downscaling leads to a strong demand for “cute” cottages

Lanice Steward, MD of Anne Porter Knight Frank, who has regularly identified trends in the property industry, told her agents this week that they must capitalise on a new trend – downscaling.

“With the realities of the property market at last accepted far more widely,” she said, “we are seeing a far greater willingness to move into smaller homes – especially if they are well finished and have charm.”

>> To the editor

To the editor:


Erik here. I would love to know what will happen with property in the West coast area, Langebaan, Saldanha, Vredenburg, Veldrift etc. I am in Ireland at the moment, has been for the last 3.5 years, working as a quantity surveyor for a developer/builder. I would love to move back to SA and maybe look at property development in the mentioned area. I would canvas for investment from my current employer. I was wondering whether there are still opportunity for development in mentioned area. I heard rumours of a gas plant. Would there be a influx of people who work in the area?

More info would help a lot or possible links where I can get info for a feasibility and maybe investment presentation.

Thank you,

From the editor:

If you can answer Erik on his questions send your answers to news@cyberprop.com

>> News from - Chas Everitt - Kids Haven gets complete Home Makeover

Celebrities and hundreds of kind-hearted volunteers rolled up their sleeves recently to transform Kids Haven, a children’s shelter in Benoni on the East Rand, in the first Chas Everitt International Home Makeover project.

This was run along the lines of the popular TV show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, with the children being treated to an exciting holiday while their home was totally renovated and transformed into a warm, homely and welcoming environment...

>> In the area...

Go West!

From spring wildflowers to whale-watching, surfing, fishing or simply long walks on the beach, the Cape West Coast has much to offer those in search of a beachside holiday home or a permanent retreat from the rat race. The area is growing in popularity as a full-time residential alternative, while at the same time maintaining its reputation as a highly sought-after holiday destination.

Properties on the market in the West Coast encompass everything from one-bedroom apartments to luxury mansions, Bed and Breakfasts and vacant land. Pam Golding Properties area manager Stephanie Wynne Cole says the appeal of the West Coast region is not only its enviable laid-back lifestyle — be it beachfront or countryside...

We also take a closer look at the following areas;

  • Tshwane
  • Onrus
  • Southfield
>> In the area 1 - Tshwane

Young buyers snap up Tshwane homes

Affordable homes in the former township areas of Eersterust and Mamelodi to the east of central Pretoria are selling like hotcakes to buyers in their 20s and 30s.

Olga Molepo, RealNet’s area specialist for Eersterust, says there is tremendous demand for new properties under the R500 000 mark. “Anything up to this price is selling briskly – for instance, we recently fielded more than 20 calls for a property listed at R350 000 and it sold overnight – but buyers show resistance when prices rise above R500 000...

>> In the area 2 - Onrus

Confidence rising in Onrus property market

The property market in the Western Cape coastal town of Onrus is showing signs of picking up steam.

Deon Esterhuyse of the local Aida franchise says the first indications became evident in July. “We have noticed increased demand from buyers who are planning to relocate – the so-called semigration buyers – because of the quieter lifestyle...

>> In the area 3 - Southfield

Southfield and similar areas offer excellent investment opportunities

With estate agents throughout the Greater Cape Town area often saying their area has bucked the trend and resisted price falls better than most, who is an investor to believe and where might he get a rental covering 50 to 60% of his bond?

Asked this question recently, Lanice Steward, MD of Anne Porter Knight Frank, said that for “real action”, investors are still looking to the lower priced properties and, she added, these have generally resisted price falls better than higher priced properties...

Focus on Onrus, Western Cape, South Africa

The coastal village of Onrus, about 120km outside of Cape Town, lies on a narrow coastal strip, sandwiched between majestic mountains and the sea, surrounded by fynbos. The area around Onrus is legendary for its ‘champagne’ air and Southern Right whales can be spotted near the Onrus beach in season.

Onrus is great for crayfish diving. The beach is well-known to surfers and a fresh water lagoon and nearby pool offer safe swimming. Rock pools with abundant marine flora and fauna are popular for snorkelling.

The area around Onrus is teeming with bird life such as the Black Oystercatcher and various species of Terns. The nearby Vermont Nature Reserve has a hiking trail that covers an area stretching from Brêkfis Bay to the Hawston harbour.

Hermanus, just five kilometres away, has the best land based whale watching site in the world and is home to the Fernkloof Nature Reserve showcasing ericas, proteas, and other fynbos species.

  • Onrus Nearby Attractions
  • Walker Bay Nature Reserve
  • Kogelberg Nature Reserve
  • Monkey Town
  • Hottentots Holland Nature Reserv

>> View Properties in Onrus
>> View Properties in the Western Cape

From: www.wheretostay.co.za

>> Property of the week

Western Cape, Hermanus, Onrus River

Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 2
Garages: 1

This rare arty gem is nestled between established trees and fairytale garden. Exterior handpainted with tiles and plates, painted kilim carpets in garden pathways...

Search for property in your area

Enter City/Suburb:
>> Bathroom the new health spa

Bathrooms have lost their plain utility status – and are fast becoming a deal maker or breaker in real estate sales.

The reasons are not hard to find, says Martin Schultheiss, CEO of the giant Homenet estate agency group. “It all started with the retreat of homeowners into their private space – a trend known as ‘cocooning’ in the lifestyle industry...

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