Demand for Goodwood homes now at an all time high

Goodwood, the middle class Cape Town suburb with around 20,000 properties sited just 12 km from the city centre, has, says Lee Ross, the Rawson Property Group’s franchisee for the area, become a high demand precinct, with the result that turnover in his franchise is now 12% up on the same time last year and the vast majority of the homes that his six man team advertises each month are snapped up and signed for within two to four days, usually at, or close to, the asking price.

“We are now definitely in a sellers’ market,” says Ross, “and other agencies report much the same story. The situation seems common to everyone operating in this area. What is more, I cannot see signs of this changing in the near future.”

3 Bedroom House for sale in Goodwood

The problem with a sellers’ market, adds Ross, is that stock becomes harder to secure. To counter this, his agents now spend up to 40% of their time looking for new stock, with staff carrying out pamphlet blitzes at traffic lights and telecanvassing in the evenings. The ability to give a really accurate market valuation, he says, is a big help here and with over 20 years operating in the area (Ross took over this franchise from his father Ivan) his franchise has built up a reputation for being able to do this and to provide certain other extra services.

Goodwood’s big advantage, says Ross, is its highly central position, being close to the city, Bellville and Century City. In addition, its prices are still affordable, even though by his calculations they rose by a staggering 12,5% in 2013.

The bulk of today’s sales, says Ross, are in the R900,000 to R1,5 million bracket. Many buyers are, however, willing to pay over R1,5 million and he has recently signed a deal for a home priced at R2,65 million, a near-record for this area.

4 Bedroom House for sale in Goodwood

“One of the results of the big demand in the area,” says Ross, “is that we have witnessed a steady improvement in the appearance and maintenance of Goodwood homes. Paintwork and plaster are not, as in the old days, neglected and the gardens are improving year-by-year. All this, of course, adds to the value of the homes there today.”

Much the same bullish conditions, says Ross, are now evident in the rental market. Goodwood consists mainly of three and four bedroom freestanding homes on their own plots and these now rent out for anything from R7,500 to R10,000 per month – again showing a rise of 10% to 12% year-on-year. This situation, he says, makes the area suitable for buy-to-let investors and some 12% of his sales are now to people looking for property in this area for this purpose.

One of the most satisfying aspects of operating in residential property in the last few months, says Ross, has been that a higher percentage of bond applications submitted to the banks are now being approved – and this includes a fair number of 100% bonds.

“I think we can see that the South African consumer seems to be more aware of the criteria on which these bonds are now awarded.”

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