Recent activity at Kingswood Golf Estate near George on the Garden Route has been encouraging, reports Stephen Murray, area manager of Pam Golding Properties, who says in the past six months 16 homes have either been completed or are well under construction.
“Momentum has picked up not only in terms of building progress, but also in regard to sales. Over the past 12 months (to end May 2014), the bulk of sales has been for vacant land. We believe this is attributable to the fact that the stands, which vary in size from 840-1200sqm, are priced from an entry level of just R350 000, and ranging up to R1.4 million (VAT included),” says Murray.
“The legacy of the speculative vacant stand market from a few years ago has meant that these sound buying opportunities which became available in recent years, will most likely continue to diminish in the future. The value for money on offer makes this a real proposition for people considering relocating here. With such an accessible entry level price, this is exceptional value from any golf estate perspective, especially when one considers the cost of land and services and the scarcity of such prices on golf estates in the region. A further factor contributing to the demand for vacant land is the current short supply of homes available for purchase. Coupled with this, the levies of R1139 are reasonable for an estate of this nature and calibre.
“We believe that those buying at the estate now are planning to build and not speculate with vacant land, which is a healthy situation for the estate as it indicates a continuance of the trend towards permanent owner-occupiers,” he says. He adds that the number of golf members has also grown steadily, not only as a result of additional property owners, but also by attracting golfers from neighbouring towns in the region – further testament to the quality of the Kingswood golf course, which opened in December 2007. The greens are well known and considered some of the best on the Garden Route.
Murray says recent buyers at Kingswood Golf Estate also reflect a younger age group, predominantly between 36 and 49 years (Lightstone report). “One of the key criteria for a successful golf course is convenient location. Situated adjacent to Fancourt Links in the heart of the Garden Route’s golf hub, just minutes from the centre of George and the airport, the 212ha estate is ideally positioned as a real ‘urban’ alternative with the benefit of being in a gated community with the sense of space that the golf course provides.”
Against a backdrop of the Outeniqua Mountains and with a riverine jogging trail and cycle paths, mountain bike tracks and recreational oval, this has become a ‘suburb’ in itself, yet with all the advantages of ‘country’ living. The river which runs through the estate has been rehabilitated and is maintained for a better, green environment, further complementing the magnificent, scenic setting.
“Coupled with this, buyers seeking a primary residence place a high priority on a secure location, which ensures that a gated estate such as this will remain a sound long term proposition. Adding further appeal are the indigenous, landscaped open spaces which afford the home owner an opportunity to live in a peaceful, countrified environment,” says Murray.
Over and above the vacant stands, three, four and even five bedroom completed homes in Kingswood Golf Estate, varying in size from about 260sqm to 480sqm, are priced from R2.4 million to R5.6 million, and townhouses are priced from R965 000 to R2.2 million. Some of these properties are being sold from plan, with modern finishes.
Commenting on the residential property market in general, Murray says the Lightstone suburb report ranks Kingswood Golf Estate fifth highest area in terms of average valuations in George. “With an average value of approximately R2.68 million, Kingwood Golf Estate tops numerous other nearby suburbs, the bulk of which have average residential property values ranging from approximately R1 million to R1.7 million.”
To date 545 stands at Kingswood Golf Estate have been serviced, 215 houses completed and a further 47 plans approved. In total there will ultimately be approximately 1000 stands. Murray says that approximately 90 percent of the homes already constructed on the estate are permanently occupied, and also positively, rentals are in demand.
Three and four bedroom houses are rented out between R12 000 and R15 000 per month, while townhouses – generally with three bedrooms, achieve rentals of R7000 to R8000 per month depending on the size of the unit. Tenants are currently those with families who are working in the area, many of whom have relocated and do not wish to buy initially, but seek security in a gated community.