Fortune will favour the bold, says Aida chief

Although many in the real estate industry are very glad to see the back of 2009 and its economic troubles, the year was appreciated by some as a great opportunity to ditch tired business practices and put some new ones in place in preparation for a better year ahead.
“And positive change will no doubt serve those who have had the courage to implement it very well in 2010,” says Young Carr, CEO of the Aida real estate franchising group.
The past 12 to 18 months have been good for property consumers, he notes, in the sense that estate agents could no longer take the very casual, easy-come-easy-go approach that was common during the boom years, but had to provide really good service to keep mandates and close deals.
“But we think the years ahead, including 2010, are going to be even better from this point of view, because companies like ours have spent the time to also seek out and implement brand new ideas and product offerings that are going to take SA real estate to a new level.”
Meanwhile, he says, property investors would also be well-advised to make some bold moves at this time. “The recession is officially over, which means that job opportunities will start to increase this year, salaries will start to rise again and the demand for homes will also go up.
“That means, in turn, that the oversupply of stock will be absorbed and price growth will start to gain real traction. At the same time, however, there will still be many who cannot qualify for home finance under the strict new credit law and must therefore rent.
“So, especially with interest rates at their current low levels, now is an excellent time for serious real estate investors to re-enter the market. The economists are predicting that property values will rise at least 30 percent over the next three years and between now and then, those who let their investment properties are also likely to achieve very good rental returns.”
Indeed, says Carr, Aida agents in many areas are already reporting a significant increase in the number of sales taking place on the back of a surge in confidence that started back in September. “Consequently, we are positive this is going to be a sterling year for real estate.”
Issued by Aida National Franchises

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