The on-going price rises and stock shortages which characterise the residential property market in so many of South Africa’s big city suburbs, are particularly evident in the Cape Peninsula’s Bergvliet and Meadowridge precincts, says John Weston, the Rawson Property Group’s franchisee for these areas.
“Since the start of this year,” said Weston, “we have seen prices here rise by 9% to 13%. These are quite possibly the fastest price rises seen in Cape Town’s southern suburbs. Houses that sold here only 12 months ago from R2,3 million to R2,4 million are now selling for around R2,6 million to R2,8 million, and as yet there are no signs of a slow-down in price escalation taking place.”
The growing popularity of the area, says Weston, has caused serious stock shortages which, in turn, have made it essential to spend a great deal more time in canvassing and giving free valuations so as to ensure that a reasonable supply of homes is available.
“In December 2012,” said Weston, “we had some 90 homes for sale. Today the total stock available is on occasions less than a dozen.”
The majority of buyers in his area, said Weston, are looking for homes priced between R1,9 million and R3 million – although the area does have more expensive homes. It is, he said, very rare to find any home today valued at under R2 million and sales above R3 million are beginning to take place fairly regularly.
“Quite frequently now”, said Weston, “a home will be sold at the asking price, or very close to it. We often have as many as four eager buyers waiting in the wings for one home and it is not unusual for homes to sell before they are put on show or before they are even advertised.”
Asked to give reasons for Bergvliet and Meadowridge becoming so sought after, Weston listed five main factors. These, he said, are:
The suburbs’ position in relation to the Cape Town CBD (just 16 km away), Century City and other main area work nodes;
The reputation of the local schools, both secondary and primary. As these schools follow the strict policy of giving priority to local residents’ children, it is essential to live in the area if you want your children to attend them;
The sophistication of the local retail and entertainment venues which, he said, are on a par with those of any other Cape Town suburb;
The very high standard of both suburbs’ housing complemented by large erven (800 m2 to 900 m2) as well as well-maintained parks, sports centres and public open spaces;
Growing demand from potential buyers in other provinces who are motivated to move here because they perceive the province and municipality to be a great deal more efficient than those where they live. This, said Weston, is particularly important for those who are wanting to relocate to open businesses here.
Although stock is in short supply, says Weston, it will pay any potential buyer to persevere in his efforts to secure property in Bergvliet or Meadowridge for the simple reason that further value growth is, in his opinion, assured.
“I do not for one moment accept that our prices are now peaking. With demand so strong they will inevitably rise further, making any buy here a sound investment.”