Camps Bay’s broad appeal underpins market strength

Camps Bay’s appealing synergy of opulent glamour, relaxed beach lifestyle and traditional family values along with its wide choice of property options been the main driving force behind its largely irrepressible market which has seen property values continue to rise in spite of the general market slump.

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Brendan Miller, Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty Atlantic Seaboard and City Bowl CEO, says that although this exclusive coastal strip is known to be one of the country’s most stable markets, it hasn’t been completely impervious to current economic trends with most suburbs reflecting a dip in both sales volumes and sale prices, especially during the first half of 2016.
Camps Bay, on the other hand, has been marching to its own drum with only a slight drop in the number of sales, while property values have continued on their strident upward trajectory.
Citing Propstats data, he says: “The market peaked in 2014 with a record number of sales since the last property boom almost a decade ago when the average house and apartment sale prices increased significantly from a 2010 low of R6.5m to R9.88 million and R5.7m to R6.12m respectively.
“While fewer properties were sold in 2015, property prices continued their steady climb and the average house price jumped to R12.5m while apartments sold at an average of R7.5m.”
According to Lightstone data, prices have risen sharply again this year, with records for the past three months between May and July reflecting six house sales at an average price of R17.433m and six apartment sales at a record average sale price of R10.26m.
Edith Marsh, Area Specialist for Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty, says: “Entry level prices in Camps Bay now begin at around R6m for an older two bedroom apartment further up the hill while a similar apartment on the beachfront will cost around R12m and its unlikely that you will find a house for less than R9m.
“Properties are sought after across the board, with many of our current sales being to upcountry buyers who are moving to the Cape”.
“We are now beginning to see stock shortages, especially houses under R12m and apartments in the R6m to R10m price band.”
Lew Geffen, Chairman of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International realty says that the upper end of the market has also remained more active than in many other upmarket areas in Cape Town.
“Six years ago only 10% of all freehold house sales were above the R10m price mark, while around 55% of house sales during 2015 fell into this price band.
“Over an eight year period between 2007 and the end of 2014, the R10m to R20m price band improved by a whopping 138% with a total of 16 properties sold to the value of R211m compared to only seven homes to the value of R88.98m in 2007.”
Geffen adds that Camps Bay also has the highest number of trophy homes in South Africa, with 170 properties valued at more than R20m and Victoria Road is the fifth most expensive street in the country an average sale price of R23.1m.
Marsh says that in spite of its glamourous reputation and trendy beachfront strip, Camps Bay is very much a family suburb where home owners stay on at least throughout their children’s school years.
“Forty nine percent of existing owners have lived in their properties for 11 years or longer with the majority (74%) being in the 50 plus age group.
“However, the resident demographic is beginning to change with 45% of recent buyers being in the 35 to 49 year age group, many of which are ‘semigrants’ from upcountry.”
Miller says: “There are around 1190 properties in Camps Bay of which 66% are still freehold, while the property landscape has changed significantly in neighbouring suburbs where sectional title developments have sprung up.
“This is one of the main reasons the market in Camps Bay is so dynamic and houses that are priced correctly will usually move very quickly.”
Marsh adds that the adjacent enclave of Bakoven has also seen tremendous market growth in recent years, and it now not only tops the list as the most expensive suburb on the rental market in South Africa it’s also setting the bar in terms of sales prices achieved on the Atlantic Seaboard.

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