select
|

Where To For Property in 2012?

While the debate is relevant it is only so in the short term. This is because property really is a long term investment and seen from this perspective the current market down-turn takes on a different level of importance.

Bruce Swain, Managing Director of Leapfrog Property Group believes that; "One mustn't forget that for most South African households owning a home equates to a good investment and stability which in the long term is not overly affected by the international drama. Consumers being transferred or being in need of up or downgrading or all the other good reasons for buying or selling, can do so under any market conditions. For the run of the mill property owner life goes on, for the investor the short term market remains depressed."

Swain is one of many property experts who know that those buyers who plan to sit on their newly purchased properties for the next four to six years will not be overly affected by the current property maelstrom. It also remains true that while the property market fluctuates in the short term, long term prices continue to increase. As such, those in the know still recommend buying, if you can afford it now and you can afford to sit on the property for a period.

That being said, the current market has far from recovered. Swain equates it to a seriously ill patient. All indications are that the patient will recover - given the right medication such as the government's R1 billion mortgage-backed insurance fund. The National Housing Finance Corporation (NHFC) chief executive, Samson Moraba, confirmed last week that the fund will be operational by October 2012 and will aim to galvanize banks into approving more home loans.

While it is true that our banks were largely exempt from the international banking woes the current global situation has made them more skittish than usual. The insurance fund will hopefully ease their concerns through mitigating the risk to banks by being "a wholly owned subsidiary of the NHFC but registered, licensed and regulated by the Financial Services Board in terms of compliance with the regulations and its solvency requirements", says Moraba (as quoted in a Business Report:)

According to the same report Marius Marais, the chief executive of First National Bank (FNB) Housing Finance, is of the opinion that the fund could decrease the cost of mortgage insurance as all mortgage bonds would be pooled into one and the risk shared on a bigger portfolio base.     

Swain believes that other positive indicators are: the downward trend in the ratio household income versus debt which peaked at 82% but is now in the upper 70%. This is a positive sign but is still far too high (although much better than most first world countries at present!). The patient is getting the right treatment - household debt is coming down and the interest rates are stable.
There is however a few risk factors that need to be dealt with. Firstly the fact that the current international, financial crisis looks to be far from over with analysts and citizens alike waiting with baited breath to see if Italy will be able to make its debt repayments.

Secondly, we have our own political hot pot brewing with the leadership struggles in the ANC which are set to intensify in 2012. Anyone who witnessed the impact of the Polokwane conference knows the potential for market unrest during this period.

All being said and done does it mean potential property buyers need to wait? Not necessarily says John Loos as quoted in Moneyweb: “it’s important, I think, in these tough times to buy well within your means. Yes, some do still believe interest rates will go up later this year or early next year and ultimately interest rates always do go up. But it’s not only about that, it’s also about all the costs being heaped on to housing, we know about Eskom and we know about municipalities. So, in these tough economic times, tough financial times, I think it’s always good to buy within one’s means if one is entering the property market.”  

And that seems to be the best advice for the moment – by all means buy property yes; in the long run it will be a valuable investment. But, buy within your means and take a long term view. Investors seeking to make a quick buck might want to think twice.


  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
  
2000
Characters remaining


    Latest Property News
    • 19 Jan 2018
      Extending from Randfontein in the west to Roodepoort in the east and including the towns of Krugersdorp and Magaliesburg, the West Rand has a plethora of property available to residents who choose to make this unique area their home.
    • 19 Jan 2018
      When it comes to financial planning, doing the work to ensure you’re prepared for unexpected emergencies is just as important as ticking off your other goals and New Year’s resolutions. The beginning of the year is also the perfect time to review your various insurance policies.
    • 19 Jan 2018
      No surprises at the first Monetary Policy Committee of 2018, as Reserve Bank Governor, Lesetja Kganyago, announced that the interest rates would stay at their current levels.
    • 18 Jan 2018
      The Southern Suburbs make up some of the most popular residential areas in Cape Town, comprising charming groups of suburbs which lie to the south-east of the slopes of Table Mountain. It is seen as the city's most expensive residential neighbourhoods with a choice of various private schools, upmarket eateries, wine estates, beautiful homes and trendy apartments.
    • 18 Jan 2018
      New year, new goals! If you’ve resolved to purchase your first property in 2018, then this 6-step guide from the Rawson Property Group is a must-read. It will help you navigate and simplify what is often be seen as a confusing process of buying your first home – right from the house-hunt to the house-warming.
    • 17 Jan 2018
      While the current property market may still favour buyers, it doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be well prepared before putting in an offer to purchase.
    • 17 Jan 2018
      Lightstone lists Blair Atholl as the most expensive suburb with an average house price of R11.2 million, followed by Westcliff (R10.5 million), Dunkeld (R9.3 million), Sandhurst (R9.1 million) and Inanda (R7.2 million).
    • 17 Jan 2018
      As it currently stands, there are four main ways in which a home can be bought in South Africa, says Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, who adds that deciding in which legal entity to purchase the property is not a decision that should be entered into lightly, as each has its pros and cons.
        
    X
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Name  
    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    select
    X
    Share this Page

       
    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    About
    Connect with us
    FEEDBACK