Don’t let an upfront deposit stop you from renting
Deposit4U - South Africa
If you want to rent accommodation, but find the upfront deposit a steep financial challenge, there is a solution: take a short term loan that covers the deposit and pay it back over 12 months. When your lease ends, you are entitled to get back your deposit plus interest from the landlord.
This is the niche offering of Deposit4U, a financial services company that recognised a need for finance among young people starting out in life and filled the gap, says the company founder and CEO, Andile Nomlala.
“Most student interns, recent graduates and young professionals do not have a cash lump sum in their bank account or wealthy parents to pay the upfront deposits on rental accommodation,” he says. “When they enter the working world for the first time, moving into their own space is exceptionally difficult, if not impossible.”
Smart technology in your home
Steeple - South Africa
The age of fast-evolving technology has many buyers, especially millennials, demanding state-of-the-art technologies in their homes. So where does that leave the cash-strapped property owner who wants to sell their home to the broadest possible market?
Many sellers believe that the addition of any smart technology will skyrocket the appeal of their properties. However, it is essential that you spend money on the right type of technology if you want to get a return on your investment. For example, high tech systems such as home entertainment installations can date quickly and so would not be worth spending money on.
Broadband internet connectivity - such as fibre to the home - is now a key factor in the buying decision and would be attractive to most buyers, including those looking to work from home. Areas with good connectivity are in high demand and it is no surprise that Parkhurst, in Johannesburg's northern suburbs, is top-performing property market. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do about fibre optic connectivity if your property isn't in an area where the service is offered.
Glum reports tell part of the story
Multi Net Mortgages - South Africa
Recent reports about the South African housing sector have tended to be gloomy.
Commenting on these, John Smyth, CEO of the bond originators Multi Net Mortgages, generally regarded as one of the more astute and far sighted firms operating in this field, highlighted several salient points in the latest ABSA Home Loans Review, which he described, “as always giving us a comprehensive and thorough picture of the current scene.” Almost all of the points initially selected by Smyth reflected a less than satisfactory situation, but he then went on to express a guarded confidence in the future and gave his reasons for this.
Among the points which Smyth believes now relevant are:
There's more to land reform than expropriation
IolProperty - South Africa
Did you know the government could radically speed up land reform without expropriation? Did you know that 5 million to 7 million black South African families live on council-owned urban property, which could be transferred into their names, giving them security and injecting billions into the economy? Did you know that the government owns vast tracts of unused land that could be given to the indigent?
Measures aimed at empowering South Africa's black majority to share in the wealth provided by our land have long been supported by the Free Market Foundation (FMF). Apartheid spatial planning was a travesty, which saw unelected and prejudiced bureaucrats control the use and allocation of residential, as well as agricultural land.
The current government's decision to pursue a similar faulty line of thinking by enacting into law the Expropriation Bill is worrying at best, and disastrous at worst. President Jacob Zuma is set to sign this bill into law soon, thereby striking a blow to security of property rights and investor confidence - two things for which South Africans fought hard and long. The FMF, however, suggests some better alternatives to expropriation.