Eclectic Orange Grove still a popular choice

Very few suburbs in Johannesburg can contest Orange Grove’s unique synthesis of excellent value and eclectic diversity in a prime location that continues to attract a steady stream of first time buyers and investors seeking a stable return in a subdued market.

This character-filled three bedroom family home in Orange Grove has warm wooden floors, high ceilings and a well-maintained established garden. On the market for R1.09 million, this renovator’s dream has good security, ample parking and is within easy walking distance of an array of amenities.

Nestled between the upmarket suburbs of Houghton, which boasts an entry level price of R5 million, and Norwood where homes for under R2.5m are a rare find, Orange Grove is an exceptional gem in which a freestanding family home can still be bought for less than R1m and a price tag of R2.5m is the exceptional top end of the market.

Zal Goldberg, Area Specialist for Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty says: “Since 2011, the median house price has climbed steadily from R800 000, reaching a record high of R1.18m by the end of 2016, which translates into a very respectable year-on-year growth of 9.5% per annum over five years.

“Almost exclusively freehold, with many of the original homes still available, it’s a wonderful area to purchase property and renovate for resale or to enter the active rental market.”

Goldberg adds that there is a strong demand for rental homes in Orange Grove and, with the average monthly rental for a three bedroom house averaging around R15 000, investment buyers are realising healthy returns.”

Lew Geffen, Chairman of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty, says that according to Lightstone data 136 houses changed hands in Orange Grove in 2016, with the majority (91) of the sales being in the R800 000 to R1.5m price band at an average sale price of R1.13m.

“The next most active bracket was houses priced between R400 000 and R800 000, where 24 houses were sold at an average sale price of R663 458, followed by 18 transactions for between R1.5m and R3m at an average of R1.75m.

“At the entry level and top end of the market, 14 house sales were in the R400 000 to R800 000 price bank at an average price of R663 000 and there were two sales for over R3m at an average price of R3.7m.

“And, although registrations during 2016 (excluding sales not yet registered by year-end) dipped slightly from 126 the previous year to 121, the combined value of sales rose significantly from R126m to R142.8m.

He adds that the current accessible pricing along with the stable demand in both the sales and rental sectors in Orange Grove makes it the ideal suburb in which to flip properties, although the spike in value indicates that the window in which to maximise returns is beginning to narrow.

Goldberg says that the true charm of the suburb is that, despite its favourable price point, Orange Grove remains a middle to upper-class suburb, adding that the ongoing renovation they are currently seeing is constantly upgrading the area.

“Residents also have access to an array of excellent amenities including good schools, a choice of shopping centres and medical care at the Bagleyston and Linksfield Clinics.

“There are also myriad leisure and entertainment options, from iconic landmarks like the Radium Beer Hall to the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club and the Houghton Golf Club which abut the suburb.

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