The residential housing development at Burgundy, Brackenfell (not to be confused with Burgundy Estate) is now the fastest moving in the entire Western Cape, says Rowan Alexander, second in command to, Andre Swart, the Rawson Property Group’s franchisee for Brackenfell Roslyn and manager of this franchise’s development projects. The franchise has the sole mandate for all sales in the new development and, says Alexander, currently both sales and service installations of the project are moving ahead quickly.
The area being developed lies southwest of Brackenfell Central and covers in all some 100 ha of what was formerly farmland. The development was initiated by the Rawson franchise selling the land to a consortium of Cape developers (some of whom have already completed their projects, in one case selling only undeveloped land at ± R570,000 per plot).
The developers, Brick and Board and Innovia Properties, are now active and “really getting into their stride”, says Alexander, and the products they are offering, he adds, are “without any doubt at all” the best value for money currently available in the Western Cape.
Burgundy home sales here are, in fact, regularly around 20 per month and they are focused on two main categories of housing: group housing (in gated estates, where they sell from R1,2 million to R 1,5 million) and freehold housing (which sell in the R1,5 million to R3 million category).
In the group housing, the styles, says Alexander, are modern but have such conventional features as pitched roofs and plastered façades in which there are face brick feature sections. Internally, he says, the interiors incorporate such upper bracket finishes as Hansgrohe taps, porcelain tiles and solar geysers. All the group houses are on plots of 300 m2 to 350 m2 and all have three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a double garage. To date, the project, having just kicked off, 60 homes are already signed for and a further 270 will be marketed and built by the end of 2017.
The freestanding, non-group homes, says Alexander, are evoking widespread interest in the Cape residential sector and, he adds, a surprising number of buyers are signing on for homes in the upper section of the R3 million price bracket.
“These homes, as one would expect, have luxurious finishes and many extras such as braai rooms, extra bedrooms and studies as well as many as three or four garages. Thus far 90 such homes have been sold, leaving another 250 to be taken up.
“Those buying freestanding homes,” comments Alexander, “are in a particularly strong position. Nowhere else in Cape Town’s Northern Suburbs are developers able to offer 500 m2 plots with quality houses at this price level. In addition, we allow the buyers to amend the developer’s plans or work to their own plans, the only proviso being that the home must have at least 150 m2 of floor area, so that no one unit can let down the standard of the others.”
Alexander says that construction work is now scheduled to start in August and, at peak, 100 houses will be under construction at the same time.
For many buyers, says Alexander, the Burgundy area represents a big step up, both socially and as regards their lifestyle. Coming from areas like Kuils River, parts of which are very distant from schools, as well as other parts of Brackenfell where the home designs are dated, most buyers see this move as a big improvement in their living conditions. A particularly important draw-card is the primary and pre-primary schools which Curro will be developing here for opening in 2015.
“Also creating excitement is the fact that, as we progress with roads, sewers, storm water drains, lamp posts, paths and parks (which are now greening up nicely), potential buyers can see the project taking shape and this they find extremely satisfying.”
Most of the buyers, says Alexander, qualify for 80% to 100% bonds and the reason they can do this is that household incomes of the average buyers here are often at R60,000 or more.
“Our buyers are mostly successful upwardly mobile professional and management types and such people, we have found, are particularly keen on private school education of the type provided by Curro.”
A fairly high proportion of buyers, adds Alexander, are investors. They have found, for example, that on a home costing R1,220,500 (one of our standard products), they can from day one get an R11,000 per month rental. This equates to a 10,8% gross return, highly satisfactory by any standards in South Africa today. What is also very clear is that capital appreciation on these units will be running at around 10% per annum, making this an even better investment proposition.