Thesen Islands becomes Knysna’s top selling suburb

Thesen Islands, now Knysna’s biggest selling suburb despite the premium that properties in this prime waterside location attracts.

Thesen Islands has become Knysna’s biggest selling suburb despite the premium that properties in this prime waterside location attracts, according to Seeff’s principal for the area, Suzi Bilyard.

She says homeowners will be thrilled to know they have made the right decision and for sellers, it has never been a better time to sell.

“Moving from a position of oversupply after the 2007/8-downturn, we now have a severe undersupply of stock and cash-ready buyers are lining up for the next listing. Activity has been building over the last three years and for the last calendar year, sales at Thesen Island accounted for a quarter of all residential sales in Knysna,” says Bilyard.

“The suburb also boasts the highest average price and the highest price paid for a single residential property in 2014 and again this year so far with a R16.6 million sale.

“Seven of the 10 most expensive properties sold in Knysna for the year ended July 2015 are in Thesen Islands and account for a total sales value of R63.7m.”

Bilyard says the boom here continues and registered sales for the first two months of this year is already 34 percent up in value compared to last year.

“It is clearly a sellers’ market here and the statistics support this. Thesen Islands consists of 512 freehold houses and 56 apartments. According to the sales trend since 2013, about 15 percent (85 units) of properties change hands annually, yet there are only about 23 properties on the market. This equates to only 4 percent, which is nowhere near enough to meet the demand,” says Bilyard.

“With demand outstripping supply, there is also a boom in the capital value growth of homes in the suburb. The average price – which includes the Dry Mill apartments, but excludes the islands and business premises – has moved from R4.375m in 2013 to R5.222m in 2014 and with 13 registered transfers in 2015 is currently at R6.464m. That equates to a phenomenal 43.7 percent growth, which is quite extraordinary in any market conditions.”

Aside from the prime waterside location propelling the suburb to the most sought-after in Knysna, Bilyard says Thesen Islands delivers on a number of factors that have become critical for today’s home buyers.

Security is at the top of the list and Thesen Islands has one of the most effective security control systems in place. This is critical especially given that a large portion of homes in the suburb are holiday homes.

But this aspect is not unique to Thesen Islands, so why is it outstripping other security estates in the area? The answer might be due to it creating a feeling of freedom and not being imprisoned behind barbed wire and walls, says Bilyard.

“There are no walls on the lagoon side and children can walk or play freely or paddle their kayaks. Residents also have direct access to the Knysna lagoon from their patios. The facilities encourage an active lifestyle, with a safe and secure beach, sports facilities including a nine-hole golf putting course, all carefully integrated into the environment and it is easy to see why the demand is now so strong here.”

Right now, the selling conditions are excellent with buyers aplenty and paying good prices, but Bilyard says sellers should not hesitate for too long, especially in view of the recent cautionary notes signalled by the banks.”

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