Buy strategically and protect your future
Chas Everitt - South Africa
If there’s one area in which the saying “go big or go home” should definitely not apply, it’s the residential property market.
In fact, says Berry Everitt, MD of the Chas Everitt International property group, homebuyers should adopt exactly the opposite strategy, of purchasing only as much home as they absolutely need right now, at the best possible price in the best possible area.
“It’s never a good idea for property buyers to stretch themselves to their financial limits to buy a property, and that is especially the case at the moment when consumers are facing ongoing and sizeable hikes in the cost of fuel, food and utilities, not to mention the possibility of further interest rate increases later this year,” he says.
“Buyers really must leave themselves some room to manoeuvre if and when these increases materialise,or they are very likely to find themselves unable to meet all their financial obligations and at risk of losing the home they have worked so hard to acquire.
Buy strategically and protect your future
Ban on estate agent accreditation fees 'long overdue'
IolProperty - South Africa
The Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB) recently outlawed the payment of accreditation fees to Home Owners' Associations (HOAs) for permission to estate agents to market homes on their gated residential estates in South Africa.
'It's great news for sellers in gated estates. At last they now have access to achieving best-possible sales prices for their homes in a free and open market.', says Ronald Ennik of Ennik Estates.
'Accreditation obstructs the free flow of market forces, and could thus impact negatively on homeowners' return on the capital investment in their most precious asset - their homes,' he adds.
'However, outlawing the practice does not detract from the fact that HOAs exist for a purpose: They create and enforce rules, regulations, and codes that preserve and protect their estate neighbourhoods and the property values within them - which estate agents must adhere to and respect,' says Ennik.
Three major challenges face estate agents today - and all call for skill and perseverance
Rawson - South Africa
Answering questions from a member of the property press recently, Bill Rawson, Chairman of the Rawson Property Group, said that estate agents will always be called on to meet challenges and these challenges inevitably will change roughly every five to ten years.
Right now, he said, the big challenge encountered, particularly in the high density urban and suburban areas, is, firstly, to garner enough stock.
“In less than three years the more popular areas have seen a remarkable swing from a stock oversupply to a stock shortage position,” said Rawson. “Today’s truly successful agent will always be in areas such as, in the Cape Town suburbs, Rondebosch, Newlands, Claremont or Kenilworth, and will be the one who devotes anything up to 30 to 40% of his time to canvassing for new stock. This is an exhausting process which frequently entails also giving a property valuation – one of the many services for which agents are not remunerated.”
Residential building statistics
Absa - South Africa
Residential building activity contracted in April 2014
April 2014 saw a contraction in both the planning and construction phases of residential building activity in the South African market for new housing compared with the corresponding month last year. Although residential building activity has remained relatively subdued so far this year, these trends with regard to April are mainly attributed to seasonal factors. These developments regarding private sector-financed residential building activity are based on data published by Statistics South Africa.
The number of new housing units for which building plans were approved by local government institutions was down by 566 units to 4 440 units in April from 5 006 units in March. Building plans for a total of 5 091 units were approved in April last year, which were 651 units more than in April 2014. The April figure was 12,8% lower compared with a year ago.
Building activity with regard to the construction phase of new housing, i.e. the number of new units reported as completed, contracted by 812 units, or 18,9% year-on-year (y/y) to 3 474 units in April, while also down by 738 units on a month-on-month basis.
Building stats Apr 2014