Regular press reports from estate agents at the Cape West Coast village of Melkbosstrand, which is sited just 30 km from the centre of Cape Town and which has some 3,500 freestanding homes and 800 sectional title apartments, to the effect that the entire precinct has become ‘the flavour of the month’ and highly sought after by residential property purchasers are accurate and not exaggerated.
This was said recently by Karen van Vuuren, the office manager at the Rawson Property Group’s Melkbosstrand franchise, which is owned and run by David and Anne Marie Evans.
This Rawson Property Group franchise, which is said to have 35% of the market share in this area, has over the last four months been averaging sales of 11 houses and sectional title units per month and they expect this rate of sales to hold steady well into 2015, said van Vuuren.
“The demand is so strong,” she said, “that prices are now rising at 8 to 10% year-on-year and our only really difficult challenge (as in so many successful Rawson Property Group franchises today) is to find enough stock.”
Melkbosstrand, she said, has in the last decade moved up noticeably on the prestige scale: today most estate agencies classify it in the middle to upper middle bracket and evidence of this is given by the fact that Rawson has recently sold homes close to the beachfront at R7,5 million and R5 million and prior to this apartments close to the beachfront priced as high as R1,550,000 and R1,3 million.
Buyers, too, said van Vuuren, are more affluent and at the top end of the market can these days often pay in cash, while most of the others, without difficulty, manage 10 to 20% deposits.
Nevertheless, said van Vuuren, the demand for freestanding homes is still the strongest in the R1,6 million to R2,3 million bracket, while the fastest selling sectional title units are in the R750,000 to R1,2 million category.
Asked what is driving the desire to live in this fairly exclusive West Coast precinct, van Vuuren said that Melkbosstrand itself is one of the friendliest and most relaxed of all Greater Cape Town’s residential areas as well as being one of the safest. What is more, she said, the age of many of the homes here (a large number are 30 to 35 years old) is no drawback at all because today’s buyers are usually capable of, and do, undertake renovations which add greatly to their charm.
Any review of the Melbosstrand residential property scene has to mention the Asrin development carried out in conjunction with the Cape Town City Council, Melkbos Village. This project has some 300 freestanding and sectional title units and lies along the northern side of the entrance to Melkbosstrand. The high standard of design and building and the real value of these affordably priced units are indisputable, said van Vuuren. As a result it has achieved steady sales throughout the development period.
“We are not in a position to confirm if any further development is possible because on the east side the area is hemmed by the R27 highway, while to the south lies a proclaimed nature reserve and to the north the nature reserve associated with the Koeberg Power Station.”