Weekly Newsletter
Friday, 30 May, 2008
Property Search | Estate Agents | List your property

Edition 20 of 2008, Friday, 30 May 2008

Dear Reader

Come 12 June 2008 at we will see property owners sitting on the edge of their chairs after a warning by the Reserve Bank Governor, Tito Mboweni, that the monetary policy committee might raise interest rates by two percent. This warning overall had a negative feeling in the property industry.

This week we have seen an increase in negative factors dampening the residential property market. The biggest of these was the xenophobic attacks that have rocked Gauteng and spread to other provinces.

This weeks view points;

  • Top auctioneer Rael Levitt warned that another interest rate hike will be disastrous for the property market; Scary property stats: SA vs the world
  • The Lehman Brothers SA research team predicts that the discussion at the next Monetary Policy Committee will be between 50 basis points and 100 basis points hikes; Mboweni makes amends
  • "Property rates are going up and that is going to be a further shock for consumers, on top of the petrol price. We are really taxing our middle class and they are not given anything back. The rich can (emigrate) and then we will find out what poor really is," T-Sec economist Mike Schussler said; The worst is still to come, say economists
  • It's getting a lot more difficult for people to score property finance these days, with banks turning customers away in their droves and increasingly expecting deposits. And bank managers say your mortgage application is more likely to be approved if you put your own money into a deal in the form of a cash deposit. This by Jackie Cameron; Banks tighten mortgage screws

We received a call and also an email from one of our subscribers and if you are selling your property privately this warning is not too be missed; "Once here he opened the luggage, called me and then proceed to open a silver trunk with grand gesture, safety locks and all, gloves on his hands and some white powder flying around. To my surprise he pulled out R100 notes with a clear stamp of The United Nations on it". If this sounds unbelievable to you for sure you are not going to believe the rest of the letter; Letters to the editor Thank you Marina for this warning.

Many people reckon that the most important rooms for selling your home are the bathroom and the kitchen. Although the other rooms are important, these are the rooms that can make or break the potential sale; BetterBond's tips to home buyers and sellers

Don't forget to visit our CyberProp Blog for more property news and views.

The editor


>> Property news - Nationwide - UK house price falls accelerate in May

LONDON (May 29) - The pace of UK house price falls accelerated in May as more weak economic news added to the gathering momentum of negative sentiment about the housing market, according to Nationwide.

House prices fell by 2,5% during the month, the largest recorded monthly fall in the history of the Nationwide monthly index. At seven months, this is also the longest consecutive period of monthly falls since 1992...

>> Scary property stats: SA Vs the world

Another interest rate hike spells "disaster" for the property market - warning.

Top auctioneer Rael Levitt has warned that another interest rate hike will be disastrous for the property market.

Research from Levitt's Alliance Group suggests that more than 55 000 people will "suffer mortgage stress" this year, of which 15 000 will experience"severe stress" and 8 000 could lose their homes...

>> Mboweni makes amends

Once core inflation is on the way up, the only way to bring it down is by slowing growth below potential and hammering down inflation expectations. And it seems as though at least the central bank governor Tito Mboweni has understood the problem.

This is the view of global analysts Lehman Brothers, who were commenting on the speech given last night by Mboweni at the Gordon Institute of Business Science...

>> The worst is still to come, say economists

South Africans, already hard-hit by spiralling food and fuel prices, should brace themselves for further inflation as another interest rate hike and a record fuel price rise can be expected next month, economists have said.

And it was also time for the government to consider the high taxes for little return that the country's inflation-battered middle class was forking out, which was a contributing factor to emigration of the rich...

>> Banks tighten mortgage screws

What you can expect to score if you're buying for under R1m or over R4m. It's getting a lot more difficult for people to score property finance these days, with banks turning customers away in their droves and increasingly expecting deposits.

The country's largest mortgage originator, ooba, said on Monday that South Africa's biggest banks are declining home loan applications far more this year than last year...

>> Be a ‘rate tart’ and save on your bond

CAPE TOWN (May 29) - South African home owners might have to become ‘rate tarts’ – a term coined in the UK for consumers in those isles who constantly chase better deals from lenders – in order to limit the pinch of rising interest rates.

“As interest rates continue to inch up, home buyers will have to negotiate more aggressively with lenders. Given the current economic climate, South Africans need to develop a culture of bargaining and hunt for better deals...

>> Property owners being 'duped'

The City of Joburg has resorted to allegedly conning unsuspecting property owners into paying arrears run up by their tenants. In terms of the Municipal Systems Act, the city is entitled to claim only two years of arrears from property owners.

However, since November last year, the city unilaterally decided to start charging full arrears, refusing to issue clearance certificates in terms of the act...

>> Bringing sexy back?

As house sales cool, demand for accommodation continues to grow. As a result, people are turning to renting — pushing up returns in the process.

The rentals market is buoyant and is set to strengthen further. In some centres, rental properties are snapped up within weeks of being put on the market. Returns are at last moving higher as tenants are prepared to pay more — a situation exacerbated by a shortage of stock...

>> Buy now – while the market sleeps

RECENT reports that up to 15000 South African real estate agencies are expected to shut down because of the dip in the property market have posed a number of challenges.

The challenges are perhaps even more acute for those who had recently opened up real estate agencies with the hope of taking advantage of the boom in the property market...

>> Chas Everitt plans extreme makeover of children’s homes

Along the lines of the popular TV show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, property group Chas Everitt International is planning to transform two children’s homes into bright and stimulating environments.

The homes - one in the Cape Town region and one in Gauteng - will be given a total makeover by teams of experts over a weekend in October this year, while the children are treated to a mini-holiday...

>> Buyers and Sellers now more realistic, says Clarke

The more realistic attitude that real estate agents have for some time now been pleading for with both sellers and buyers is at last becoming evident, says Tony Clarke, MD of Rawson Properties.

Among buyers in particular, he said, despite “disheartening stories we read from time-to-time in the property and financial press”, it is now clear that the majority still end up being homeowners, in the process accepting that they can no longer afford what they had originally had in mind...

>> News from - Ikonic Real Estate

Property Registration in SA

A credible property register ensures that almost each piece of land can be identified.

This provides not only the creation of a register of who owns a piece of land or has rights thereto, but also provides this information for public knowledge...

>> Letters to the editor


Dear Sir

I advertised on your site and got this fantastic offer from a buyer in the United Kingdom to buy my property from me with cash.

Firstly I was contacted by a Mr George Makunda from Pretoria. This from a prepaid phone number:0767993573 and e-mail: georgemakunda@workmail.co.za - to inform me that a friend of his brother living in the United Kingdom wanted to buy a house in South Africa.

They claim to be of Sudanese origin, that the Government of Senegal has issued them with diplomatic passports to travel and that the people from the United Kingdom work for the United Nations.

This buyer in the UK ; Mr Kevin Adama will purchase the property in cash if he is satisfied with it. So Mr George Makunda came along and took photos that he could send to the UK, to Kevin Adama, for his approval. Kevin Adama called and then confirm that he will be flying to the RSA and will be staying with the Senegalese Embassy in their guest house.

He came to inspect the property and said that he will take it. I insisted that he sign an offer to purchase and that the funds be transferred to my bank account.

He then releases his luggage from the Embassy at a cost of R8000.00. Once here he opened the luggage, called me and then proceed to open a silver trunk with grand gesture, safety locks and all, gloves on his hands and some white powder flying around. To my surprise he pulled out R100 notes with a clear stamp of The United Nations on it. I told him that he must deposit the money into a bank account as I will not take any other form of payment than a bank transfer.

He then took out a red bottle of liquid and proceeded to wash these notes. The stamp came off. There was no more liquid in the bottle and he started to panic.

I asked what the problem was and he told me that he must get more of the liquid and that he needed to call the United Nations. He called a lady and I spoke to her, in Afrikaans. She told me he must bring in the consignment so that they can treat it for him. I told him to take the trunk and go to the UN as he only wanted to take the bottle. The women then told him it must stay overnight and it will cost him R4000.00 He asked if I could lend him the money but I said no.

The next day I took him to the UN and could not go in myself. When he came back he was very upset. The liquid would cost him then R75000.00. I told him I was selling my house not buying one and that he must take the trunk and do the transfer as I told him.

Then the brother from the UK A Buma Adama contacted me vie fax: 442030025672 and 448704798864 and email:adamabuma@yahoo.co.uk with this story that their father had a stroke and he was now in charge. That they were very upset with the Kevin Adama because he did not wait for Buma Adama to come to RSA to do the deal. If I could help and assist financially with the R75000.00 they would appreciate it. I said no.

Kevin Adama left the trunk and then called to say they would take R30 000.00 as an up front payment and that the rest could be paid later. I said no. Buma Adama offered to transfer the funds via a financial institution and I kept on asking which one. They say they will send you a conformation of the banking transfer. Till today I have not I received such notification.

Eventually I cancelled all negotiations.

Now if you have a silver trunk in your house, open it, don't be afraid. You will find R100 notes printed on the one side and the rest is all blank paper. The white powder is body talc powder.

I have reported these people nationally and internationally. Do not pay anything and if you get this guy close to that trunk, call the police!!!!!!!!!!!

I know that at present they are in Cape Town. If anyone in Cape Town have a private cash buyer from overseas, watch out, DO NOT GIVE ANY MONEY AND CALL THE POLICE

Marina Dreyer


>> Focus on Richards Bay, KwaZulu Natal, South Africa

The Bustling town of Richards Bay began as a makeshift harbour set up by a Commodore of the Cape, Sir Frederick Richards during the Anglo-Boer War of 1879, and settlement sprang up around a port now named after Richards.

The town is vibrant and fast becoming the north coast holiday destination, offering spectacular scenery and unspoilt beaches. It is one of the closest sea destinations from Gauteng and enjoys a summer climate all year round...

>> View Properties in Richards Bay
>> View Properties in KwaZulu Natal

>> Property of the week

KwaZulu Natal, Richards Bay

Bedrooms: 3
Bathrooms: 2

Something different! Unique thatched roof home with wooden flooring, thatched lapa, neat kitchen, 3 bedrooms plus 2 upstairs lofts...

Search for property in your area

Enter City/Suburb:
>> BetterBond's tips to home buyers and sellers

The keys to preparing a bathroom for a show house

Many people reckon that the most important rooms for selling your home are the bathroom and the kitchen. Although the other rooms are important, these are the rooms that can make or break the potential sale.

Clean. Bright. Luxurious. You don’t have to spend huge amounts on renovating your bathroom, as this is a very personal room and one that is most often renovated by the new owner. Here are a few tips for preparing your bathroom for a showhouse:

Remove all the clutter and personal items. Buyers don’t want to see your hair brush, tooth brush, tooth paste, razor, half-used shampoo bottles or, even worse, the kitty litter box. Make sure the laundry basket is empty on show day, and if it isn’t an attractive basket, put it in a cupboard for the day. It will create more space.

If the bathroom taps are outdated, consider replacing them with sleek and modern ones. It is not too costly and will be worth the investment. If you have dark cabinets, light or gold coloured handles will enhance them. If your cabinets are a light colour, you can give them a sleek look by using handles of the same colour or use darker handles that match the key colour in your bathroom. If any mirrors are cracked, consider replacing them.

You can avoid dated tiles by simply painting them – this is a low-cost alternative to replacing the tiles. First coat the tiles with a high-adhesion primer. Next, simply brush on a special ceramic epoxy covering.

Re-caulk the sides of the bath, shower and basin. The bathroom will immediately look a lot cleaner. If there is any surface mould in the shower or on the walls, try mixing one part water and one part bleach in a spray bottle, spray it on and clean it off. There are also products specifically for mildew that you can buy at your local supermarket. You can give the walls a fresh coat of paint in a nice neutral colour. If the shower door is grimy, instead of replacing it, try cleaning it with a solution of one part muriatic acid to about 10 parts water. Scrub it with steel wool and wipe it down. If you have an old and grubby shower curtain, replace it. They are really inexpensive. Make sure you scrub out the bath and basin – no one wants to see a ring of dirt around the bath when viewing a home! Polish your chrome taps and ensure the mirrors are spotless. Lastly, make sure the toilet is clean and close the seat cover.

Now, add pampering accessories. Get some bubble bath, a fancy hand wash at the basin, some scented soaps by the bath and some candles. Put clean, high-quality plush towels on the towel rack and make sure they match or compliment the bathroom’s colour scheme. And a nice touch in every room, including the bathroom, is a plant. This adds life to any area of your house.

Article by: Cheryl Marais – Direct Marketing Manager - Betterbond

>> 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 propert

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