|Kempton Park, reportedly one of the country’s 10 largest residential cities, is notching up record sales in the wake of a strong home buying wave driven by the government’s recent decision to raise the transfer duty threshold.|
So says local real estate principal Danie Goosen, whose company Danie Goosen Estates is a member of the National Referral Network (NRN), a countrywide network of more than 200 estate agencies.
As from 1 March, in terms of the 2006 National Budget delivered by Finance Minister Trevor Manuel the month prior, no transfer duty has been payable on properties bought for up to R500 000. This has, without doubt, stimulated buying at the lower end of the market, he says, not only among traditional first time buyers but also emergent market purchasers, both end-users and investors.
Commenting on current conditions in the town’s residential market, Goosen says demand is coming from a cross-section of buyers, at the lower end of the market, middle income earners and those in the R1 million plus range. While house price values appear to be set for steady growth at around 12 percent on average, he says, the area’s multitude of suburbs still offer comparative value for money for those on tight budgets as well as the well-heeled.
In the entry level market, suburbs such as Kempton Park West and parts of Birch Acres offer regular opportunities for first time buyers to gain a foothold in the market. Here house prices start at around R450 000 while townhouses change hands for R550 000 and upwards, substantially less than the national average house price, which according to latest Absa’s House Price Index is now more than R765 000. Goosen reports that most activity is to be found in the R500 000 to R800 000 price range, with entry level values rising in all suburbs.
At the top end of Kempton Park’s market, in suburbs such as Glen Erasmia and Blue Gill, interest is also steady, despite price tags ranging from R1,6 million to R4,5million on average. Blue Gill does, however, offer the occasional small cluster or townhouse for around R800 000, he adds.
Of these purchasers, many are ex-residents who are returning to Kempton Park, either because of its employment opportunities or because of its central location, which means less time spent commuting to work and less traffic congestion. Goosen says demand is high for homes in these areas, which are characterised by high levels of security, aesthetically pleasing surrounds and modern architecture.