Towards the end of 2012 Andre Swart, franchise principal for the Rawson Property Group’s Brackenfell Roslyn franchise, and his second-in-command, Rowan Alexander, predicted that probably no residential area in South Africa would experience such phenomenal development and price appreciation as Brackenfell.
This confident statement was based on two facts. The first was that this franchise, which has regularly been a top performer amongst all of the franchises in the Rawson Property Group on several occasions, was generating record sales (± 25 per month) in the existing second hand home market.
Secondly, when this statement was made they had just secured the sole marketing and sales mandate for a consortium of six property developers led by the company Brick and Board which had been given the go-ahead by the City Council on the new Burgundy development sited within five minutes of Brackenfell’s centre. Units here are being marketed on a plot and plan basis in a fairly wide price range but the biggest demand is in the R1,650,000 to R1,700,000 bracket.
In the five months since the launch, the Rawson Property Group’s sales team has sold 122 units here, and is continuing to sell at a rate of around 20 units per month. They are usually able to promise delivery within 15 weeks of the sales document being signed.
Swart and Alexander said this week, spurred on by the growing problem of stock shortages in the second hand market, that values continue to increase by some 10% year-on-year. At the Burgundy development, they added, prices are now rising by 18% on an annualised basis, i.e. even faster than the second hand market.
“The Brackenfell residential market,” said Swart, “is ideally suited to anyone looking for a three or four bedroom home on its own plot (150 m2 to 200 m2) in the R1,3 million to R2 million bracket.”
Buyers at the Burgundy development have a very wide range of choices – there are approximately ten styles, each of which has a big range of sizes and configurations. What is more, this development, said Alexander, has raised prices throughout Brackenfell – all homes here have increased in value recently. Not surprisingly, a fair percentage of Burgundy’s buyers are, in fact, local Brackenfell people who, seeing the quality of the new homes now being offered want to upgrade to them. They can very often achieve this by selling their own home and moving to the new home without significantly increasing their outlay – perhaps spending only R250,000 more than they get for their existing home.
Alexander and Swart both agreed that they were confident that the demand will remain strong, even if interest rates increase by as much as 2% or 3%.
To maintain their sales rate and to ensure that they have a satisfactory stock list in these times of dire shortages, the franchise has intensified its training and greatly increased its advertising – in some months they spend ten times as much on advertising as many other franchises. They also continue to empower their agents through regular training aimed at making them more client-orientated, service minded and professional.