‘New aris­toc­racy’ leads the lux­ury mar­ket

Young buy­ers who have grown up with ev­ery con­ve­nience are now the ma­jor­ity, and want more

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - PROPERTY -

FOR THE first time, young peo­ple are now in the ma­jor­ity among buy­ers of lux­ury prop­er­ties, re­search has found.

Most have in­her­ited, or an­tic­i­pate in­her­it­ing, sig­nif­i­cant wealth, but also have solid ca­reers of their own.

On av­er­age, these buy­ers are 37-years-old and mar­ried with young fam­i­lies.

This is the “new aris­toc­racy”, ac­cord­ing to re­search con­ducted by Lux­ury Port­fo­lio In­ter­na­tional and in­ter­na­tional mar­ket re­search com­pany YouGov to es­tab­lish de­mands and ex­pec­ta­tions among high-net-worth in­di­vid­u­als who are plan­ning to spend $1 mil­lion (about R12.6m) or more on real es­tate within the next three years.

The study in­ti­mated a co­hort of con­sumers aged 25 to 49, en­com­pass­ing mil­len­ni­als and the younger por­tion of gen­er­a­tion X, will power the lux­ury mar­ket go­ing for­ward, and will ul­ti­mately be larger in num­ber and greater in eco­nomic power than the wealthy in the gilded age of the Rock­e­fellers.

Most of these high­net-worth buy­ers will have ex­pe­ri­ence in liv­ing a lux­ury lifestyle be­cause they are the chil­dren of high- net- worth in­di­vid­u­als.

“Their ex­pe­ri­ence with fine real es­tate, fash­ion, travel and a host of other cat­e­gories has made them savvy con­sumers with many de­mands,” says Berry Everitt, chief ex­ec­u­tive of the Chas Everitt In­ter­na­tional group, which is the Lux­ury Port­fo­lio In­ter­na­tional af­fil­i­ate in South Africa.

“Younger buy­ers who have grown up with wealth have greater ex­po­sure to lux­ury, are more ed­u­cated and aware of their likes and dis­likes. They know brands, they de­mand qual­ity and they are fa­mil­iar with real es­tate.

“They tend to grav­i­tate to blue-chip sub­urbs and lux­ury es­tates with an in­ter­na­tional rep­u­ta­tion, such as Val de Vie in the Cape Winelands, Zim­bali on the KwaZulu-Natal north coast, and Dain­fern in Joburg. Many will use a sig­nif­i­cant in­her­i­tance to pay the de­posit on a lux­ury prop­erty or to buy it for cash.”

What type of homes are the buy­ers in this new aris­toc­racy look­ing for?

Ac­cord­ing to the re­search, they are pri­mar­ily seek­ing ur­ban- type res­i­dences (54%) of at least 400m2.

“In fact, 53% are look­ing for some­thing over 700m2 and most pre­fer four or more bed­rooms and three or more bath­rooms,” says Everitt.

“When it comes to where young lux­ury buy­ers want to live, it is in­ter­est­ing to note that prox­im­ity to friends and fam­ily (48%) ranks sec­ond af­ter prox­im­ity to stores, res­tau­rants and schools ( 55%). Af­flu­ent young buy­ers don’t want to be far from loved ones, but also crave con­ve­nience and short com­mutes.”

As for ar­chi­tec­ture, the new aris­toc­racy has mixed tastes, the sur­vey found, rang­ing from mod­ern through to Vic­to­rian, Tu­dor and Ge­or­gian, and many are seek­ing homes with some his­tor­i­cal sig­nif­i­cance or prove­nance. What they have in com­mon is a de­sire for in­te­ri­ors that of­fer

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