9/10 rich­est SA sub­urbs are in Cape Town

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - PROPERTY -

THE ECO­NOMIC pres­sures and junk sta­tus notwith­stand­ing, prop­er­ties in the Cape are still fetch­ing ex­cel­lent prices ac­cord­ing to Samuel Se­eff, chair­per­son of the Se­eff Property Group.

A study by Se­eff, based on data from Light­stone and Prop­stats for the pe­riod 2011/12 to 2016/17, also re­veals Cape Town is now home to nine of the 10 rich­est sub­urbs in the coun­try, up from seven two years ago, says Se­eff.

Clifton tops the list with an av­er­age sell­ing price of R23 mil­lion. Only one Jo­han­nes­burg/Sand­ton sub­urb, Sand­hurst, ranks in the top 10 at fourth place with an av­er­age sell­ing price of R16.5m. This is two places lower since late 2015. West­cliff and Dunkeld have dropped off the top 10 list.

The top 10 rank as: Clifton (R23m), Llan­dudno (R17m), Bantry Bay (R16.9m), Sand­hurst (R16.5m), Camps Bay ( R16.2m), Fres­naye (R16m), Wa­ter­front (R16m), Hig­govale ( R16m), Bish­op­scourt ( R15.1m) and Con­stan­tia Up­per (R11.6m).

Se­eff points out that the de­cline in the rank­ings of the top- end Jo­han­nes­burg and Sand­ton sub­urbs be­come even more pro­nounced in the R20m-plus super-lux­ury sec­tor. High net-worth buy­ers are just not in­vest­ing at the same lev­els in Sand­ton and even less in Pre­to­ria East and, he says, the pala­tial homes there are still strug­gling to achieve the pace of sales and prices the At­lantic seaboard and City Bowl are achiev­ing.

Light­stone data shows for the Joburg/Sand­ton area, an av­er­age of six to seven res­i­den­tial trans­ac­tions priced above R20m were recorded an­nu­ally be­tween 2010 and 2015. This in­creased to 10 trans­ac­tions over the last year. Only three Pre­to­ria East res­i­den­tial trans­ac­tions ap­pear to have taken place since 2010.

Com­par­a­tively, 20- 50 trans­ac­tions were recorded for the Cape in the 2010-2014 pe­riod, ris­ing to 67 last year, or three times more com­pared to Joburg, Sand­ton and Pre­to­ria East.

By early June this year, there had al­ready been 44 trans­ac­tions above R20m gen­er­at­ing over R1.1 bil­lion in revenue. In­ci­den­tally, 30% of these were to Joburg buy­ers, a hand­ful from KZN and only a few for­eign sales (mostly UK and German buy­ers), the lat­ter being less than 10%, and, says Se­eff, far less than com­monly per­ceived.

Where prices have com­fort­ably reached the R100m- R200m- plus price lev­els on the At­lantic seaboard, Pre­to­ria East has only had a sin­gle sale of R45m (Waterk­loof, 2014) and R66m in Sand­ton (Em­pire Place, Sand­hurst, 2016). Even in the City Bowl, Se­eff has just con­cluded a record R34m sale and in Hout Bay R32m.

Se­eff says he would have ex­pected the fig­ures to have been re­versed, with Joburg/ Sand­ton achiev­ing more sales and much higher prices con­sid­er­ing Sand­ton’s sta­tus as the wealth cap­i­tal of the con­ti­nent and the wealth there is enor­mous, he adds.

Pre­to­ria East is home to the premier gov­ern­ment and am­bas­sador- ial belt and Se­eff says he would have ex­pected the fig­ures to be re­versed.

Se­eff be­lieves buy­ers and property in­vestors, not just at the top-end of the market, but across the board, want to know they are in­vest­ing in ar­eas where service de­liv­ery and zero tol­er­ance for cor­rup­tion are hall­marks. They want to know their in­vest­ment is not just safe, but will grow in value.

The At­lantic seaboard av­er­age sell­ing prices (full ti­tle) have more than dou­bled over the last five years (since 2011/2012), says Lance Co­hen, Se­eff ’s lux­ury market spe­cial­ist for the At­lantic seaboard.

The big­gest gains have been recorded in Fres­naye (+167%) and Camps Bay (+128%), with the lat­ter at­tract­ing the high­est num­ber of R20m-plus sales.

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