Homeowners who previously sold properties in Pretoria's "old East" in order to move to security developments on the city's periphery are now returning to the long-established more central suburbs.
And Elsa van Schalkwyk, office manager at the RealNet office in Waterkloof, says many of the buyers coming back to Waterkloof, Brooklyn and Lynnwood cite the convenient location of these areas as the main reason for their about turn.
"A high percentage of prospective buyers now insist that they do not want to live east of the N1 highway. They want to live closer to top schools and tertiary institutions such as Tuks, Unisa and Varsity College because of substantially increased traffic flows in Pretoria's eastern sector.
"Building of new schools has also not kept pace with the vast residential development in the "new East". Only a few private schools have been established in these suburbs, resulting in an overflow that has to be accommodated at older, established schools elsewhere."
Returning buyers also say that access to the N1 and N4 highways are easier from the old East while fuel prices that increase commuting costs are also an important consideration, Van Schalkwyk adds.
"Another new trend we are starting to see is that existing residents in the old East would rather renovate and modernise their existing properties than upgrade to other areas.
And those who do sell to downsize also tend to look for smaller properties in their immediate area. Staying in the old East, with its established infrastructure, is non-negotiable for many of these buyers."
Van Schalkwyk says most buying activity takes place in the lower price ranges. The entry level is around R1,5m in Lynnwood and about R1,8m in Brooklyn.
Issued by RealNet