Property sales throughout 2013 at Yzerfontein, the attractive Cape West Coast village 87 km from Cape Town, were steady, says Marijanne van Nieuwenhoven, the Rawson Property Group’s Yzerfontein sales agent – the franchise is owned by David and Anne-Marie Evans.
Van Nieuwenhoven, who is said to be one of the top two sellers of housing and plots in the village (with 11 years as a resident, she is well-established and known in the area), had in early December, together with agent Heleen Plaskitt, sold 22 properties over the year and by early next week expect to add another two to their list.
“Although we did get a great many visitors during December,” she said, “we did not see a big upswing in sales at that time. This is true to the pattern we have observed previously in this town, with many of those who do visit coming back later to enquire about property.”
Yzerfontein’s warm dry winters (the rainfall here even in July is seldom above 80 mm for the month) make it the perfect escape place for Capetonians. This fact, said van Nieuwenhoven, helps to keep sales steady throughout the year. She has, in fact, for some time now managed an average of one and a half sales per month.
Some 40% of Yzerfontein’s residents, said van Nieuwenhoven, are retired people and as many as 60% of homes are owned by people who use them only for holiday and weekend visits.
Many of the home buyers coming to Yzerfontein, added van Nieuwenhoven, are looking for small cottages, preferably with uninterrupted sea views. However this type of home is hard to find in the village.
“Most of our homes are fairly substantial, with a large number being double storey buildings. They have between three and four bedrooms and they tend to sell in a price range of roughly R1,2 million to R4 million. The average sale price recently has not been that far off R2 million, while the plots which I have sold have averaged R400,000 and have usually been around 650 m2 in size. The lowest priced home currently available is priced at R1,195,000 while plots start at R320,000 — beach front plots start at R1,800,000.”
Those wishing to build for themselves will, said van Nieuwenhoven, find a good selection of plots to choose from and local building teams, with labourers and artisans drawn mainly from Darling with whom the town has close connections, are skilled, reliable and not too expensive. Construction prices of new homes are usually from R6,000 to R10,000 per square metre.
According to local estate agents, Yzerfontein felt the effect of the recession less than most Cape West Coast towns, which were some of the hardest hit in the whole of the Western Cape. Home prices, said van Nieuwenhoven, did, however drop by up to 10%, but they have now been stable for at least two years and the long awaited upturn will, she believes, take place from mid-2014 onwards. Now, therefore, is a good time to buy in this West Coast village.