Poor maintenance of roads a threat to Johannesburg home values

Ongoing poor maintenance of Johannesburg’s decaying suburban road infrastructure poses a real threat to the city’s residential property values – particularly in prime areas – says luxury homes marketer Ronald Ennik.

“Even the most astute of buyers who visit homes on roads blemished by potholes, broken and blocked kerb inlets, and poorly constructed pavements – or, worse, no pavements – will subliminally devalue the property before they even get to look at it, let alone make an offer.

“At its worst, the problem can result in both individual residential streets, and entire suburbs, being marked down in value,” says the founder and CEO of Ennik Estates – the exclusive affiliate in Gauteng of London-based Christie’s International Real Estate.

“Another problem – even in prime-priced Sandhurst in Sandton – is that no provision is made for parking on quieter, non-arterial, streets.

“The greatest impact of this poor, or non-existent, service delivery problem is clearly in the top end of the residential property market, where the highest municipal rates are paid,” says Ennik.

“The situation is compounded by the fact that the Johannesburg Roads Agency has reportedly been spending only 1,5 per cent of its annual R525-million budget on road maintenance.

“Against this background, the recent announcement by Johannesburg’s executive mayor Parks Tau that the City has budgeted more than R30-billion over the next three years for replacement and maintenance of infrastructure and services is good news,” says Ennik.

Mayor Tau said in his GDS (Growth and Development Strategy) that the City is not only “addressing issues of road quality and filling in potholes”, but is also  showing “a long-term approach to resurface roads in major areas…including Bryanston, Sandton, Rivonia and Parkview.”

“If this plan becomes a reality – and not just another non-delivery issue – the value benefits to Johannesburg’s residential property market will be immense,” Ennik concludes. 

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