Developments set Amanzimtoti property market alight

Transnet’s R100bn plan to turn Durban’s former international airport site near Amanzimtoti into a new dug-out port and new commercial development in town have stirred up the local property market.

Demand for residential property has shot up, says Deidre Ronnenbergh of the local Aida franchise, as contractors descend on the town. Their numbers are also being swelled by upcountry buyers relocating their businesses to Amanzimtoti in a quest for a more relaxed, seaside lifestyle.

“This has galvanised the rental market and even though sellers who don't find buyers in a month or two are switching to renting out their properties, shortages are becoming evident. Further compounding the problem for new arrivals is the fact that many landlords only offer short rental contracts because they reserve their units in the holiday high season to cash in on much higher seasonal rentals.

"For instance, a one-bedroom flat that commands a rental of around R3300 a month in the off-season can easily be let for up to R450 a day in the high season, and most landlords her attain full bookings during holidays."

The pressure on rental stock has seen monthly rentals rise in the past few months to start now at around R2500 a month for bachelor apartments, R3300 a month for one-bedroom units and R4500 to R5000 for two-bedroom units.

The high demand for rental units is also spurring new investment by landlords, Ronnebergh says. “They are sourcing older properties in need of renovation and spending some capital to modernise them before releasing them on to the rental market. And their capital expenditure is being offset by excellent returns. Units bought for between R850 000 and R1m yield average rentals of between R8000 and R9000 a month."

Prices of properties for sale in Amanzimtoti currently start at around R450 000 for one-bedroom flats. Small two-bedroom homes are priced from R650 000 while average three-bedroom, two-bathroom family homes sell at around the R1m mark. Luxury properties are selling at prices of up to R5m.

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