It is probable, says Ryan Hamburger, a Rawson Property Group estate agent serving Sea Point and Green Point, that no other precinct in the entire Greater Cape Town area has in the last decade undergone such a massive uplift as Green Point – and, he says, it is proving to be on-going.
“The densely packed 1950s homes that one finds all over the slopes of Signal Hill are one by one being renovated and rapidly changed, often at great expense, with the resulting products taking on values of R5 million to R10 million.
“Then, too, we have seen and are still seeing a host of new apartment developments: The Richmond (which sold out within a few short weeks), The Odyssey, The Legacy and The Chelsea — all of which are chic, modern buildings in which the units tend to sell in the R1 million to R4 million price range. Similarly, Green Point Main Road bears almost no resemblance to what it looked like ten or 12 years ago and is now home to some of Cape Town’s best restaurants. The landscaping around the new stadium, which was probably the main catalyst in initiating the upgrade, has won several awards and has been highly praised internationally. Green Point, therefore, is now definitely “in”, trendy and the place to be.”
Lightstone, who uses Deeds Office figures, commented Hamburger, has calculated that the average household incomes of residents at Green Point is in a range from R51,000 to R67,000.
Green Point’s new image, said Hamburger, is reflected in the average prices – and again he quoted Lightstone.
“According to Lightstone, apartments in Green Point which in 2004 had an average price of R533,000 now have an average price of R1,303,000, while freestanding homes which in 2004 had an average price of R1,539,000 now average R3,563,000. These are by any standards very big increases.”
What these figures should be telling potential buyers and investors, said Hamburger, is that although, in his estimate, prices are now rising by 4 to 6% per annum and will continue to do so because stock shortages are affecting virtually all estate agents and stock is extremely hard to come by. Green Point is still fairly affordable, at least to the average young upwardly mobile couple or single person — the sort of people most attracted by its trendy image. It is interesting to note that nearly 30% of existing owners have lived there for less than five years.
“At the Rawson Property Group and, I suspect, in other local estate agencies, the bulk of our apartment sales are still in the R900,000 to R2 million bracket and many of the houses are still priced not that far above R3 million, although, as indicated, the area does have more than its share of luxury R10 million plus freestanding homes.”
Demand for accommodation in the area, said Hamburger, is largely due to its strategic position so very close to the city and V&A Waterfront, as well as to its affordability. Any correctly priced apartment with a value below R3 million, he said, is now likely to find a buyer within four weeks and many have recently been selling at the full asking price or close to it.
“All the signs now point to this being a very good place to buy a residential property and we are heading for a period in which prices will rise further — the right time to act is now.”