Centurion Becomes Budget Friendly

Centurion has come a long way since the days of the Erasmus family to whom the founding of this sprawling suburb can be traced. The Erasmus family arrived and settled in the area in 1841. Indeed, Erasmia, Elardus Park, Zwartkop and Doornkloof can all credit their titles to these landowners and founding farms.


What was previously a conservative Afrikaans outpost is now the area of choice for many up and coming black professionals and wealthy bigwigs alike.  Centurion’s appeal lies in the fact that it offers country style living and easy access to all major amenities in both Pretoria and Johannesburg. Indeed, one could almost view Centurion as the new halfway house between the two centres.    


Naomi Pretorius, licensee of Fine & Country Centurion explains how this noteworthy suburb is faring property wise.


Steadying out

Fine & Country, previously Streetwise, have been operating in Centurion for twelve years and, according to Pretorius, the residential market is stabilising. 


“Property prices will continue to rise, however price increases will be moderate in nature. This can be attributed to a number of factors such as the increased interest rate and the new credit act. These aspects have made people slightly gun shy in terms of property purchases.


“Additionally, a marked decrease in huge price hikes has also been witnessed. Sellers who insist on unrealistic asking prices have realised that buyers are much more ‘value for money’ savvy and are just not willing to pay exorbitant prices anymore. Some sellers have actually dropped their asking prices by as much as 20% in order to sell.


“The fact that the current market simply isn’t producing the high profits that were previously experienced in relatively short time frames has also affected the residential market,” Pretorius added.


Eldoraigne provides a good example of trends versus growth patterns:


  • 2004 - 25%
  • 2005 - 22%
  • 2006 - 30 %
  • 2007 - 11%


Says Pretorius: “A house in Eldoraigne sold for R1,9 million in April 2006. A year later it went for R2,1 million, which in property terms is not a particularly huge profit.”

It is clear from the above that growth for 2007 has slowed slightly.


All gloom and doom?

Fine & Country maintains a positive outlook. Says Pretorius: “We are certain that Centurion will continue to prosper. Indeed, demand for entry level homes and townhouses continues to remain strong as does the rental sector. There is still a large demand for properties that are priced between R500 000 and R1,5 million, which is in line with property trends across the country.”


Townhouses below R700 000 are also selling well. For example, a townhouse in Rooihuiskraal North sold for R580 000 in April 2006. The same residence sold for R680 000 this year.


The underlying strength of the market is also evident in that new mixed-use developments such as Eldo Meadows, Raslouw Manor, Goldengate and Celtic Manor are attracting buyers in all price ranges.


New multi-function shopping centres like Mall@Reds, Southdowns and numerous others have seemingly also appeared overnight, which is indicative of a healthy market.


The advent of the Gautrain will also help boost Centurion property prices. “People enjoy the country atmosphere Centurion exudes; therefore hassle free transport between Pretoria and Johannesburg will make living in Centurion a particularly attractive prospect,” commented Pretorius.


The government has also earmarked Centurion for a R13,4 billion convention and entertainment centre designed in the shape of Africa. Due for completion in 2008, the complex has already begun to boost property prices in the area.


Office appeal

Meanwhile the Centurion commercial property market is flourishing. So much so in fact that developers are battling to keep up with demand.  A case in point is an office complex of 66 000m2 that is currently being built next to the N1 at the John Vorster off-ramp, which is already sold out. 


Even with the slight drop in growth, Centurion is by no means to be sidestepped. Like all towns, Centurion is simply experiencing a quieter growth period and it remains a good area in which to invest.
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