With peace of mind remaining a key priority for many buyers, secure estates with lifestyle environments appeal to those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
Estate living became a phenomenon in South Africa from the mid-1990s, and today, buyers are increasingly looking to purchase homes in secure environments close to amenities.
“People want to move to an area that is close enough to the city, but feels like living in the countryside, with space to enjoy the outdoors, and even in some instances scenic mountain views,” says Dr Andrew Golding, chief executive of the Pam Golding Property group.
He explains that most estates offer different property types – including upmarket apartments, freestanding homes, and retirement villages - thus they appeal to a broad market and are often no longer limited to high net worth individuals.
Dr Golding says in Johannesburg, the greater Fourways and Midrand areas are home to some of northern Johannesburg and Gauteng’s most sought-after country, eco, equestrian, and golf estates, offering residents an enviable lifestyle in secure environments.
Buyers are attracted to these estates because of the various activities they offer, which include health and gym facilities, fishing, walking, and other sporting activities. In addition, these estates are well-located - close to shopping centres, health and entertainment facilities as well as a number of excellent public and private schools.
According to Pam Golding Properties Johannesburg North Estates Report June 2020, there are an estimated 8 602 estate developments in South Africa valued at approximately R1 trillion. Total property in South Africa is worth R5.5 trillion. Since 2010, estates have accounted for just under 17% of all properties sold in Gauteng and accounted for an average of 16.4% of all sales in Gauteng in 2019, notes Sandra Gordon, senior market, and research analyst at Pam Golding Properties.
The report profiles top lifestyle estates in Fourways which include Blair Atholl Golf & Equestrian Estate (Lanseria), Cedar Lakes Residential Estate, Dainfern Golf and Residential Estate, Fourways Gardens Residential Estate, Helderfontein Residential Estate, Monaghan Farm (Lanseria) and Steyn City. Within this area, property prices range from R2 million and upwards of R60 million for completed homes, with stands starting around R1.3 million to R17 million.
In Midrand, they include Beaulieu Country Estate, Blue Hills Country Estate, Intaba Country Lifestyle Estate (also known as Kyalami Heights), Kyalami Estates, Saddlebrook Estate and Waterfall Equestrian Estate. “Here, prices for homes start from R3 million and can reach up to R150 million for opulent homes in Waterfall Equestrian Estate, with stands starting from R4 million and rising to R15 million,” says Gordon.
Top lifestyle estates such as Steyn City, north of Dainfern, Blair Atholl Golf & Equestrian Estate and Waterfall Equestrian Estate in Midrand were ranked in the top 10 residential estates in Gauteng by New World Wealth in 2018 and 2019 respectively. In 2019, Steyn City was the only Gauteng estate to make it into the national top 10 estates ranking. It was included in the 2018 ranking along with Blair Atholl Golf & Equestrian Estate and Waterfall Equestrian Estate.
In all three estates, buyers are able to purchase completed homes, or they can buy stands and build their own dream homes.
Sales data from Pam Golding Properties shows an increase in sales activity for homes priced above R5 million in some estates in the greater Fourways and Midrand areas in 2019. Notable sales include a R7.75 million property in Monaghan Farm and R11 million in Helderfontein Residential Estate, while in Midrand, R14 million was achieved in Waterfall Equestrian Estate and R20 million in Saddlebrook Estate.
“As developers continue to move away from the traditional estate model with houses arranged around a golf course to adding properties surrounded by world-class facilities, we are going to see more people buying into these secure lifestyle estates,” adds Dr Golding.