RE/MAX Suburb Trend Report – Rustenburg

Area history

Situated in the North West Province, at the foot of the Magaliesberg Mountain Range just over 100km from Johannesburg, Rustenburg is considered to be the hub of a thriving agriculture and mining area.

As the third oldest town of the former Transvaal Province, the town of Rustenburg was officially founded in 1851 by the settlers who had made this region their home in the 1840s along with Voortrekker leader, Andries Pretorius.

It is however the baFokeng tribe who first settled on this land as far back as the 1700s.  Under the Boers, the baFokeng had to purchase land if they wanted ownership of it. Many of the baFokeng men ended up as migratory workers on the Kimberley diamond mines, under the instruction of Chief Mokgatle. Upon returning home they pooled their earnings in a tribal pot, which provided some of the capital to legally buy back their lands.

It was with the help of missionaries in the area and the efforts of Chief Mokgatle to build good relations with the missionaries that the ancestral lands of the baFokeng were eventually bought back.

But, unknown to the baFokeng, the farms bought by the tribe and individuals were located on the Merensky Reef, an outcrop which is rich in a variety of minerals, the most precious of which is platinum. This was discovered in 1925.

Today the Bafokeng kingdom has an abundance of chrome reserves and the world's second-largest platinum deposits. An agreement was reached between several mining companies and the Royal baFokeng administration where it was determined that the baFokeng would receive compensation payments and annual royalties from the mining activities that take place on their land.

Area property information

Property in Rustenburg is predominantly made up of freehold homes, which account for 56% of property in Rustenburg, and sectional title units, which account for close on 42% of property in the area.

Adrian Goslett, CEO RE/MAX of Southern Africa, says that statistics show that the large majority of recent buyers to the area have been young couples or executives as well as those looking for family homes.  Lightstone data shows that while around 39% of existing owners are aged between 50 and 64 years old, 35% of recent buyers have been aged between 18 and 35 years old, while 37% have been between the ages of 36 and 49 years old.

The average price of a freehold property during 2012 is R1,268-million, while sectional title properties have achieved an average price of R705 000 during 2012. The data also shows that the majority of existing owners have lived in their properties for less than five years.

Property price trends

Demand for property

Goslett says that the Rustenburg property market has seen 122 transfers take place between November 2011 and October 2012, the majority of which (67) have been freehold properties. Sectional title units followed close behind, accounting for 53 of the 122 transfers, while only two transfers were recorded within residential estates.

“The strongest demand for properties in Rustenburg between November 2011 and October 2012 fell within the freehold category, with more than 62% of freehold homes purchased in the R800 000 to R1.5-million category,” says Goslett. “Around 47% of the sectional title properties purchased between November 2011 and October 2012 fell within the R400 000 to R800 000 price bracket.”

He says that overall, more than 50% of all homes purchased between November 2011 and October 2012 were priced between R800 000 to R1.5-million, with close on 29% falling within the R400 000 to R800 000 range. “This indicates that sellers are pricing their properties correctly, thereby catering to the solid demand for well priced properties that offer buyers value for money.”

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