More buyers moving to Robertson

Pam Golding Properties reports fresh demand for cottages and lifestyle farms in the Breede Valley town

The town of Robertson, located in the Western Cape’s Breede River Valley, is experiencing a wave of fresh demand from buyers looking to relocate to the town and its surrounding fertile farmland.  Pam Golding Properties (PGP) reports that two segments of the market in particular are experiencing a surge in enquiries – firstly, cottages priced under R1 million, and secondly, lifestyle farms in the R3 million to R3.5 million price range.  Robertson lies around two hours’ drive from Cape Town on the famous Route 62.

PGP’s agent for the area, Jolette Viviers, says sales in Robertson in 2011 were more active than in the previous year, although still relatively slow.  However enquiries have picked up significantly since the start of the new year (2012).  The bulk of Viviers’ 2011 sales were cash deals, mainly to buyers wanting to relocate to the town on a permanent basis.  Among these was a sale of R350 000 for a vacant erf in a Robertson golf estate, sold to an international buyer, as well as R960 000 for a lock-up-and go home, sold to a Capetonian who visits regularly for the Wacky Wine Weekends and other local festivals.  Viviers also secured R3 million for a 53ha fruit farm in the nearby Montagu area, bought by a Capetonian wanting to make a substantial change of lifestyle.

“It is encouraging to see the wide range of buyers showing an interest in Robertson again,” says Viviers.  “Our recent enquiries have included everyone from international buyers looking for summer homes in South Africa, to expatriates who are thinking of returning home within the next few years, and buyers wanting to relocate here from Gauteng and other provinces.  Some are buying for retirement purposes, others for a complete change of lifestyle – the beautiful natural setting, crisp winters and sunny summers, low crime environment and ease of accessibility from Cape Town being major drivers of the demand.  Capetonians looking for weekend and holiday cottages are a further source of regular enquiries - especially now that events like the Robertson Slow festival, Wine on the River and other food- and wine-lovers’ events have put our town on the tourism map.”

Value for money is another key factor adding to Robertson’s popularity.  PGP’s MD for the Boland and Overberg regions, Annien Borg, says one can still purchase an entry-level cottage in the town for between R450 000 and R550 000.  Smaller homes are priced in the R650 000 to R850 000 range, going up to R1 million to R2 million for larger family homes in quiet suburban areas.  Lifestyle farms are available in the R3.3 million to R4 million price range.  Larger commercial farms can be purchased from R7 million upwards, although Borg says there is limited demand for this segment of the market at present.

For lovers of the outdoors, Robertson offers a wealth of healthy activities, from hiking and bird-watching to canoeing on the Breede River, horse-riding, mountain-biking and fishing.  The town is particularly popular with photographers, not only for the surrounding mountain scenery, but also for its quaint Victorian architecture, character-filled cottages, spring-time jacaranda blossoms and magnificent rose gardens.  The valley is peppered with acclaimed wine estates, including Van Loveren, De Wetshof, Springfield and Graham Beck.  Permanent residents have ample shopping, schooling and medical facilities at their disposal, including the town’s own hospital and a private English-medium school.

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