South Africa -sixth safest property investment location

A recent article in the UK's widely read "Daily Telegraph" had the following first paragraph: "The Euro is in crisis. Stock markets are in freefall. Two prime ministers have been sacked. Italian debt is at record levels and Spain is about to have an early election. Across the pond, America's annual deficit is now measured in trillions."

The article then went on to ask where, if anywhere, the beleaguered First World investor can find a safe property haven investment suitable for holiday use. The answer to the question was given in a survey done by the same newspaper. Guess what? South Africa is ranked sixth in the world in this "Daily Telegraph" survey.

Top of the list was Canada, second was Hong Kong, third was Switzerland, fourth Mauritius, fifth Gibraltar and then came South Africa, followed by Barbados, St Lucia and the Cayman Islands.

Those conducting the survey were quite frank that they regarded the regular use of English as a bonus point in assessing their destinations. Also looked at by the survey was how seriously the host country respected free enterprise and property rights and whether the areas under discussion offered easy access to First World facilities such as banks, legal firms, medical centres, airports, hotels and restaurants.

South Africa is praised for having "endless countryside, unspoilt villages, a burgeoning wine culture and a wonderful year-round climate". Everyone, said the report, speaks English (of some sort?) and the economy is seen as having been less volatile and less affected by Europe and the USA's economic problems than much of the rest of the world.

Most important of all, however, says the survey, the prices of homes in South Africa are exceptionally reasonable given the fact that the exchange rate is heavily skewed in favour of the First World investor: a three room home in the vineyard encircled Oakwood Estate in Hout Bay, a gated security development, can, reports the survey, can be bought for £333,000. This would be a low price for the average high net worth individual buying internationally.

Lanice Steward, Managing Director of Anne Porter Knight Frank, who is quoted in this article, said that the survey simply confirms what APKF has been saying for some time.

"The simple truth," she said, "is that for an English speaking holiday property investor South Africa - and more particularly the Cape Peninsula - offers virtually everything that the typical overseas property investor is looking for.

"Once an overseas visitor arrives in this country, despite our crime or negative image," said Steward, "persuading them to buy is seldom difficult and APKF is looking forward to being contacted by at least 50 potential overseas buyers this summer season."

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