While the super wealthy and foreign buyers have taken some time out from the swanky Atlantic Seaboard market, locals are using the opportunity to snap up property in the lower price categories. Ross Levin, managing director for Seeff Atlantic Seaboard, Waterfront and City Bowl says there has been strong demand for property below R5 million, predominantly apartments, accelerating slightly over the last two months.
Almost R1bn of this year’s sales for the Atlantic Seaboard and City Bowl fall under the R5 million price mark, and he says most of these deals have been concluded in well under three months.
In contrast, sales above R15 million on the Atlantic Seaboard and R10 million in the City Bowl remain slow. Only 29 deals have been recorded above this level for the Atlantic Seaboard with only 18 of those above R20 million. Just three of the top-end (R20m-plus) sales were to foreign buyers and only three of the highest prices paid have been to non-Cape buyers.
Sectional title sales are dominating the market, accounting for well over 75% of all units sold and over 55% of the value generated in the market this year.
The highest prices achieved on the Atlantic Seaboard include R60m for a house in Fresnaye, R58,5m for an apartment in Bantry Bay and R45m for a house in Clifton. This says Mr Levin is nowhere near the levels of 2-3 years ago when sales of R100 million to R290 million were concluded.
At the Waterfront and Silo District, only 5 sales worth R53 million have been recorded for this year, all below R20 million following the declining trend of the past 18 month, says Mr Levin.
In the City Bowl, sectional title sales account for almost 80% of all units sold and 70% of the value generated. Over 70% of all full title house sales are below R10 million. Only one sale has been recorded above R20, being an apartment in Higgovale sold by Seeff for R22,5m earlier this year.
The rentals market though continues to deliver excellent results with Seeff agents, Vivien Adler and Barbra-Ann Briner achieving rentals of R110,000/month in Fresnaye and R170,000/month for a house in Bantry Bay and listings of R185,000/month for a luxury penthouse at the VAA Waterfront and R130,000/month for a house in Fresnaye.
While down, business is being done on a daily basis. Regardless of the state of the economy, there is opportunity in every market as demonstrated by the shift to the lower price bands, says Mr Levin. So, while frustrating for sellers, the upside is that buyers have plenty of choice and favourable buying conditions. There can be no better time to invest here than right now as you are essentially buying at last year’s prices, and when the market turns, you can look forward to excellent capital value growth as was well demonstrated during the 2014-2017 mini-boom period.
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