Local buyers boost George property market

Property sales in George started an upward trend in September last year, which resulted in the best December sales figures in many years for the local Chas Everitt International office, and good results since then.
“December was a record sales month,” says owner Pieter van Rensburg, “and it was interesting to note that most activity came from local buyers in what many regard as a primarily a holiday destination. These buyers started coming out of their shell at the start of spring with many homeowners upgrading and tenants buying first properties.
“However, there was also an increase in buyers from other parts of the country, notably Cape Town and Gauteng, who were either planning to relocate their families or buying holiday properties. Residential properties priced at between R450 000 and about R1m are finding most favour.”
Van Rensburg says that local buyers believe the property market has reached if not passed a turning point, and are expecting expect prices to start rising in the near future.
“Expats returning to South Africa from Australia and the UK are also active in the market right now, as are investors who want apartments to let out, as they can now achieve returns of between 7% and 8% on such units - a 50% improvement on the return that was average just a few months ago.”
One- or two-bedroom apartments in George now fetch prices from R450 000 to R650 000, he says, and monthly rentals range between R2500 and R4000.
Van Rensburg notes that the confidence in the George property market evidenced by the increase in residential sales is underscored by renewed activity in the commercial market.
“Our office sold a commercial building to the value of R15m in the centre of town in December after a long quiet period in this sector.  And, as in the residential market, all indications are that the momentum will be sustained in the months to come.”
Issued by Chas Everitt International

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