Weekly Newsletter
Friday, 26 June, 2009
Property Search | Estate Agents | List your property

Edition 25 of 2009, Friday, 26 June 2009

Dear Reader

“So close and yet so far” This is what we can say today regarding Bafana Bafana’s soccer match last night against Brazil. This is also what we can say regarding another interest rate cut. But unfortunately this is not what we can say about the National Energy Regulator of SA’s grant of a 31.3 % interim tariff increase for Eskom to fund its operational costs. What will the impact of this decision be on the real estate industry? Send us your viewpoints to news@cyberprop.com

Barclays Wealth survey snapshot: The rich says they will allocate more money to real estate The report doesn't include South Africa as a country in its list of results; nevertheless in this era of globalization it gives a good snapshot about investment sentiment among the world's wealthiest people. And, the Barclays Wealth survey lends weight to recent reports that property sales are better-than-expected in some prime South African locations. Real Estate news – Rich investors vote for real estate

SA banks’ cutback credit from 1 June 2007 when the National Credit Act came into effect. This resulted in a down slide in the property industry. It does seems that the bank’s are easing down.

  • Hopes for an easier home loan climate
  • Easier bonds boost southern suburbs sales
  • Don’t rush into fixing your bond interest just yet, says Neethling

An article of interest; it is on a recent rare legislative concession that that will allow individuals to transfer their domestic residence out of a company or close-corporation, for a period of two years, tax-free. David Warneke, a tax expert at Cameron & Prentice, an accounting firm, explains that although similar relief was previously available, the current proposal is narrower than the previous relief in a number of respects. He also urges those affected by this to take advantage of this opportunity. Rare legislative concession gives tax relief on domestic residence

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The editors


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>> Looking for property in Cape Town
>> Real Estate news – Rich investors vote for real estate

Next we'll invest in prime property, say world's wealthiest in survey of high net worth individuals.

Demand is set to rise for prime real estate, as the world's high net worth individuals opt for safe havens.

That's the message contained in a report released by Barclays Wealth, a global wealth manager that offers its clients banking and investment products and is part of the Barclays Group...

>> London calling

A strong rand, weak sterling and plummeting UK property prices provide South Africans with opportunities and choice in London apartments…

The stronger rand has awakened sharp South African investors to the opportunities this presents in terms of externalising their foreign investment allowances — often with the intent of buying overseas property...

>> Bank's sudden credit cutback a serious blow

The SA banks’ sudden credit cutback, in one operation, from 1st June 2007 (when the National Credit Act came into force) impacted negatively on many sectors of the economy – and speeded up the drop in the GDP, says Shiraaz Hassan, Marketing Director for Asrin Property Developers...

>> Hopes for an easier home loan climate

Market indications are that the banks are adopting a more accommodating approach to approving home loans.

And such a change is long overdue in that the tight restrictions and unofficial moratoriums applied by banks to home loan applications have undoubtedly impacted on the property market, says Gerhard Kotzé, CEO of the ERA South Africa property group...

>> Easier bonds boost southern suburbs sales

Show house activity is up and sales numbers are improving in Cape Town’s southern suburbs following a bank decision to accept home loan applications not only from borrowers with cash deposits but also from those who can produce collateral security.

Denis Quayle, principal of leading Edgemead agency Harcourts Maynard Burgoyne, says there has been “a definite increase in demand” since Absa announced recently it would consider collateral such as stocks, bonds, merchandise and real estate as security for home loans...

>> Don't rush into fixing your bond interest just yet, says Neethling

As interest rates continue to charter a downward course, homebuyers – and existing homeowners – are once again asking themselves whether the time has come to try and fix their rates for a specified period and, if so, for how long.

“Whether or not to fix rates,” says Ivan Neethling, Chairman of the Western Cape Institute of Estate Agents, “is a question which we get asked almost daily. Hard-pressed homeowners who have struggled to maintain their bond repayments for 18 months are understandably tempted by the idea of securing a steady low rate for a specified period...

>> Debt collectors only!

Estate agents and sectional title managing agents must be registered as debt collectors before they can collect rental arrears, the council for debt collectors said on Wednesday.

"If they do so they are acting illegally and are contravening the Debt Collectors Act," chairman Jasper Noeth told a media briefing in Pretoria.

He said on 6 June, a council committee made a landmark ruling that estate agents and sectional title managing agents cannot collect arrears without being registered as debt collectors...

>> Look out now for the off-plan bargains

Investors and homebuyers who are on the lookout for real bargains should go shopping now for off-plan apartments, townhouses and clusters.

This is the advice of Keith Nash, sales director of leading residential developer Sable Homes, who notes: “Prices are very competitive at the moment and an off-plan purchase now means that shrewd buyers will probably be able to peg the cost of a home to be delivered in 2010 or 2011 at the 2008 price. This will give them a big head start when the market turns and prices begin to rise...

>> Homebuyers should keep an eye on the windows

Although a seemingly peripheral consideration, windows can play a surprisingly important role when buying a home and should be carefully inspected.

So says Harcourts Africa CEO Martin Schultheiss, who notes that older houses tend to have a few questionable window frames and latches in need of attention or even replacement due to weather or insect damage...

>> New commune proposals cause for concern

The newly published proposals for communes in the City of Johannesburg give cause for concern and could open the way to abuse if they are not properly policed.

So says Gerhard Kotzé, CEO of the ERA South Africa property group who points out that the proposals provide for an increase in the maximum number of individuals that may live in an approved commune, from the four allowed at present to 10...

>> Joining the Exciting World of Sale by Auction

As the murmur of voices grew into an intense hum, the auctioneer’s voice cut through the assembled crowd, calling the bids as the auction rose in intensity.

The bustling crowd began to bid furiously, raising and counter-raising, sparking an electric atmosphere in the room as the auctioneer’s voice began to race…

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

>> Beware of overpricing: it leads nowhere, says Rawson MD

Among home sellers says Tony Clarke, Managing Director of Rawson Properties, there will always be a tendency to think that the valuation given by the selling agent on the property is unrealistically low.

“Regrettably’” said Clarke, “there have been fly-by-nights in a few of the less reputable agencies who, in order to achieve a quick sale, have undervalued properties – but most of these are no longer in the industry...

>> Many dangers lie in wait for the hasty homeseller warns Institute Chairman

With the latest drop in the interest rates, the appetite amongst buyers for residential property has shown a marked increase – and many buyers are only too aware that as a result of what has happened in the property sector over the last 18 months, there are sellers “out there” who are “vulnerable” as they are desperate to sell fast.

This scenario, says Ivan Neethling, Chairman of the Western Cape Institute of Estate Agents, has led to some sellers being pressured to accept prices that are not market related, i.e. well below the 15 to 20% discounted rates now prevailing...

>> Rare legislative concession gives tax relief on domestic residences

The Draft 2009 Taxation Laws Amendments contain a proposal that, if enacted, will allow individuals to transfer their domestic residence out of a company or close-corporation, for a period of two years, tax-free. The motivation for the proposal was to allow such entities to avoid the payment of annual duties.

David Warneke, a tax specialist and partner at Cameron & Prentice Chartered Accountants, explains that although similar relief was previously available, where the residence had to be acquired out of the company or close corporation by 30 September 2002, the current proposal is narrower than the previous relief in a number of respects...

>> The Green Building Council receives great market support for its retail rating tool

Following the successful launch of the Green Star SA environmental rating system for office buildings last year, the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) recently began working on the 2nd in the suite of Green Star SA rating tools – for retail buildings/shopping centres.

The Green Star SA tools set standards and benchmarks to determine what comprises a “green building”. Developers and owners can use the tool to ensure they have considered all aspects related to green and ultimately have their building certified as a 4, 5 or 6-star Green Star building...

>> CENTURY 21 names Golden Opportunity winners

CENTURY 21 South Africa, the local arm of the world’s biggest property group, has announced the winners of its Golden Opportunity competition, who will each receive a 10-year CENTURY 21 franchise worth R200 000.

The winners include Graham Guthrie from Heartland Realty in Richards Bay and Harry Nicolaides from Deal Design in Boksburg...

>> To the editor

The following message was received on an article that was placed; Orman invests in SA

Dear editor,

Here we go gathering nuts again....
Just another dream that never becomes reality.
How many nuts can we take?
Orman on Oprah lists about eight things to cut down on,
EG: Eating at restaurants, petrol, having hairdos, etc...
How now brown cow...

I suppose once these boycotted businesses go down, she will write a book telling the poor losers how to re-coup from those who floored them. Does this not sound like Robin Hood who, while riding along, came across two peasants?

He tossed out his latest loot snatch and rode off. As one of the peasants reached out to grab it, the other hit his hand away.

"Don't touch it!, he shouted, "As soon as we are rich, he'll be back to rob us."

Not surprisingly, at the end of the Oprah show, a warning was displayed somewhat to the following lines;

"The advice herein may not suit everyone.

Please consult your financial advisor."

Have we not heard all that before somewhere?

Colin

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

>> News from Ieasa / How to sell a holiday home in winter

Homes are taking longer to sell – and holiday homes are luxuries that are currently low on many buyers’ priority lists.

What is more, winter is traditionally a time when it is rather difficult to entice prospective buyers to come and look at any show house, says Dr Willie Marais, national president of the Institute of Estate Agents (IEASA)...

>> In the area...

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

  • Mossel Bay
  • Bela Bela
  • Midrand
>> In the area 1 – Mossel Bay

Mossel Bay market looking up

Things are looking up for the property market in Mossel Bay on the Garden Route, with activity on the increase in all sectors.

That’s the news from Marlene Coertze, principal of the local Chas Everitt International franchise, who reckon the town is on track for a swift turnaround when the economy improves...

>> In the area 2 – Bela Bela

Bela Bela property market springs to life

The property market in Bela Bela, often referred to as the “gateway to the Limpopo”, is showing distinct signs of life.

Fred van Heerden, principal of top local agency CENTURY21 Bushveld Properties, is optimistic about prospects after having notched up sales amounting to some R16m in May. That figure includes security village residential properties and a game farm that typify the type of properties that proliferate in this region...

>> In the area 3 – Midrand

Investors pile in as Midrand rentals flourish

Midrand’s rental market is flourishing and investors who have spotted the gap are buying up two and three sectional title units at a time to let out.

That’s the news from Zakes Myeza, owner of the local Chas Everitt International franchise, who notes that both homebuying and new developments in the area have tapered off in line with current property market trends...

>> Focus on Plettenberg Bay, Garden Route, South Africa

A modern resort of perfect beaches in the centre of the Garden Route, surrounded by the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma Mountain Ranges and engulfed by indigenous forests. South Africa's premier coastal pleasure paradise.

Plettenberg Bay is a holidaymaker's paradise and the ecotourist's dream. Its eternal spring weather ensures days of warm comfort and lazy, pleasurable evenings seldom found anywhere else in South Africa...

>> View Properties in the Garden Route
>> View Properties in Plettenberg Bay

>> Property of the week

Western Cape, Plettenberg Bay

Seldom does a home of this caliber come on the market. This home has 1000m2 of floor space. Excellent usage of natural tones, glass, light and space...

Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 4
Garages: 3

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