Young Jo’burg buyers flock to southern suburbs

After a slow start to the year, property sales in Johannesburg’s southern suburbs have picked up dramatically recently, and the Harcourts franchisees in the area are expecting very brisk business in the coming summer months.

This family home in Meredale was recently sold by Harcourts Delta for R1,45m.

“Sales were constrained at the start of the year by a lack of stock, and by economic uncertainty that had a negative effect on consumer confidence. But there seems to be more clarity now and we have seen a surge in demand and sales since May,” says Michael Sears, owner of Harcourts Delta. “There is also more stock coming on to the market now as existing owners make plans to upgrade.” 

He says home prices in the south have grown by an average of 5% to 6% a year for the past three years, with those in affordable areas like Mondeor having shown even stronger growth of 8% to 10% a year.

“The more expensive properties in Bassonia and Glenvista have seen slower price growth, but that is to be expected because two-thirds of the demand in the southern suburbs is from first-time buyers and young families.”

Mondeor is especially popular with the latter, Sears says, because prices here range from R1,2m to R1,5m for a three-bedroom home on a large stand. Meredale, where prices generally range from R1,1m to about R1,3m, is also popular, whereas in Bassonia prices generally range from R1,8m to R2,5m. At the top end of the market properties in Glenvista range from R2m to R4m.”

Carlos Moreira, owner of the Harcourts Olympic franchise that has been marketing new developments in Johannesburg and its neighbouring municipalities for the past 25 years, also says that business in the southern suburbs has been brisk lately.

“And the entry-level sector from just over R500 000 to around R1,2m has been especially busy. In the new Ormonde View Estates complex close to Soccer City, for example, more than 500 sectional title apartments and standalone units have already been sold - about 90% of them to young professionals aged 25 to 35.

“Good security and proximity to the Johannesburg CBD are particularly important to most of these buyers, who also appreciate having a wealth of entertainment, sports and shopping facilities on their doorstep.”

Both Sears and Moreira also note high demand for rental units in the southern suburbs – and good opportunities for buy-to-let investors provided the properties are professionally managed.

“We currently have more than 100 units under management,” says Sears, “and are confident that the systems and processes we run deliver great added-value to our buy-to- let investors.”

Moreira says his team will shortly be launching at least two new developments specifically aimed at the rental market. The first, in Oakdene close to The Glen shopping centre, will offer 39 upmarket units and the second, in Moffat View, will offer 120 units expected to attract rentals of around R5000 a month.

“Meanwhile, our rental property management office, RentalsDotCom Olympic, continues to experience phenomenal portfolio growth. Every day more buyers are entrusting us with their investments.”

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