Hermanus satellites catch buyers' attention

Small towns and residential areas around the ever-popular Hermanus are attracting new home buyers thanks to attractive prices and an enviable lifestyle.

The trend became more noticeable during the past festive season, says Cornel Janse van Vuuren of the RealNet Onrus/Sandbaai franchise, when many upcountry visitors scouting for residential or holiday homes in Hermanus turned their attention to the good value to be had in smaller towns such as Sandbaai, Onrus and Vermont.

With property prices in Hermanus ranging between R1,4m and R3m, surrounding towns compare very favourably with entry-level prices from around R700 000, she says. "And while homes are cheaper, all the amenities of Hermanus are within easy striking distance."

Prices in Sandbaai, about three kilometres outside Hermanus, start at this level for two-bedroom, one-bathroom homes in housing complexes. Larger family homes are priced at up to R1,5m. A Curro private school opened its doors recently and is proving a strong draw card for buyers from Gauteng relocating to the coast, says Janse van Vuuren. Buyers who enrol their children at the excellent Hermanus schools also find it an easy daily commute, she adds.

Onrus now also offers excellent value, she says, since a lot of stock has come to the market recently, which has depressed selling prices. "Two years ago entry-level prices hovered around R1,2m but economic pressures led many owners of second homes here to liquidate their assets. In some instances prices dropped by nearly 30% and entry-level free-standing homes with two bedrooms, one bathroom and a single garage are now available from R899 000 upward. Homes at the top end of the market, however, are also finding buyers at prices of up to R4m."

Onrus boasts its own shopping precinct, and the safe beach and lagoon are further attractions for holiday as well as family buyers. The beach is also the venue for several festivals and festivities throughout the year.

Bordering Onrus and about five kilometres from Hermanus is the newer and modern residential enclave of Vermont.  It is adjacent to a popular nature reserve with its famous salt pan teeming with bird-life. Indeed, says Janse van Vuuren, Vermont with its prolific green zones and hiking trails draws many nature lovers.

Property here also offers excellent value. Prices of three-bedroom family homes with two bathrooms and double garaging start at around R900 000 while upmarket homes are selling at prices of up to R4m.

Janse van Vuuren adds that the Hemel-en-Aarde Estate about three kilometres from Hermanus is catching the eye of homebuyers, retirees and investors. The security estate offers an Olympic-size swimming pool, club house and tennis and squash courts. Lock-up-and-go townhouses with two bedrooms, two bathrooms and a garage are selling from around R1,2m and landlords attain monthly rentals of around R6500 on these units. Monthly levies amount to about R700.

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