Buyers: Don’t get bulldozed

The average price of a first-home purchase has risen by about 7% to around R700 000 in the past year, but while this is creating some urgency for new buyers to get into the market while they can still afford to do so, they must take care not to let anyone pressure them into making snap decisions about their purchases, or too many compromises about the type of home they want.
“If they do,” says Berry Everitt, MD of the Chas Everitt International property group,”the chances are that they will find themselves in a home they’re unhappy with or which really does not meet their needs, and will shortly have to move again, with all the stress and expense that entails.”
Rather, he says, they should be looking at keeping their first home for at least seven to 10 years to even out the ups and downs in the property market, and to ensure that they will be able to realise their home’s best value when they do decide to sell.
And writing in the Property Signposts newsletter, he says this implies that they will need to think carefully about what their housing needs might be during that time period,before they go house-hunting.
“If they are planning to start a family, for example, they will need a home with room for children and probably some garden space. Alternatively, if they anticipate that they will soon have to accommodate an ageing parent, they should perhaps be looking for a single-level home with an attached flatlet or perhaps a garden cottage.
“There are many other possible scenarios, of course, but whatever their specific needs may be, it will be well worth their while to seek out the home they think will best meet these needs, within their current affordability limits.
“And the best way to achieve this ‘match’ - without letting the market run away from them - is to enlist the help of a knowledgeable, patient estate agent to help them select suitable properties from all those clamouring for their attention.”

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