Property 24/10 - 85

Invest in property – Doctor's orders
The year 1976 is a historic period in South Africa and that of the birth of arguably one of South Africa’s leading agencies Pam Golding Properties.

Pam Golding, the founder of Pam Golding Properties (PGP) identified the need for a discreet, professional agency to assist sophisticated and high-profile buyers with their property requirements.

From humble beginnings
As the group celebrates its 35 years of existence, group chief executive officer Dr Andrew Golding says the key to the group’s success has been the adherence to a set of founding values including integrity, honesty, and professionalism.

A passion for property and service ethic that acknowledges the importance of exceptional customer service as the key to repeat business and sustainable success, have all contributed to building the brand that is PGP.

“The ability to attract and retain talented staff and estate agents is one driver of our success.”

6 tips for buying auction property
Many property buyers and investors are increasingly using the auction route looking to uncover the next great deal.

For newbies to the auction circuit, there are a few common practices you’ll want to keep top of mind before raising your bidder’s paddle in the air, says Rob Whiteley from Rawson Auctions northern region. 

1. Do your homework. Arm yourself with as much information on the property you are interested in before you arrive at the auction. Most auctioneers provide a bidder’s pack that contains essential information about the property (SG diagram, rates and taxes, levies, zoning, etc.) as well as the Offer to Purchase. Some simple online research prior to the auction can also assist in finding out some fundamental facts before you invest your time and money. 

New building regulations now apply
In a significant development that sees all new buildings and refurbishments in South Africa having to comply from 9 November 2011 to minimum standards of energy efficiency, the SABS have developed SANS 10400 part XA – the first of a set of minimum standards for environmental sustainability in new and refurbished buildings. 

Manfred Braune, Technical Executive at the Green Building Council of South Africa explains that SANS 10400 part XA essentially tackles how buildings are designed and built by addressing and providing guidelines for minimum requirements for things such as glazing, insulation, shading, orientation and building services, including air-conditioning, hot water and lighting.  

The standard gives  a few options for proving compliance, which will need to be substantiated with any building plan submitted to a municipality for plan approval, says Braune. 

“The Green Building Council of South Africa welcomes SANS 10400 part XA, and applauds and congratulates the SABS and government for putting a stake in the ground for the first time in terms of minimum energy consumption requirements for new buildings and refurbishments,” he says.  

SA cash buyers of commercial property
It would seem there is a growing trend in the USA and SA for commercial property investors to increasingly opt to pay cash for properties.

According to Org Geldenhuys, managing director of Abacus Divisions, this trend is gaining momentum due to the recalcitrant attitudes of local banks to lend money as the credit crunch continues to linger.

Since late last year and increasing during 2011, we have seen more than 50 percent of our deals being concluded by clients making cash payments, he says.

He explains that this seems to be an increasing trend as investors are forced to find alternative funding sources, or to raise the cash as banks are just too reluctant to lend money, erring seemingly excessively on the side of caution.

Insure your holiday home properly
Holiday homeowners keen to capitalise on rentals from their properties over the holiday season should insure adequately against damage and liability.

According to Mandy Barrett of insurance brokers Aon South Africa, holiday homeowners are naturally keen to generate cash flow from their holiday homes as these stand idle for much of the year and absorb money in upkeep, security and bond repayments.

She says while they are looking forward to a bonanza from renting out their coastal or mountain property over the festive season they could face losses that severely dent or exceed any profits.  

Flat above is leaking water into mine

A Property24 reader asks:

I am the owner of a flat in a sectional title block and have been for the last 18 years. In the last year, there has been water leakage from the flat above into my flat on two occasions, the last resulting in flooding of the bathroom, toilet, both the bedrooms and the lounge. 

The Insurance assessor has been in and the quotes for repairs to the damages have been accepted. On commencement of the work, it was discovered that there was still water leaking from above. The owner above is refuting this and refuses to take responsibility for his plumbing and do the required repairs. 

Since he is very difficult to deal with, the Chairman of the Body Corporate and the Managing Agents have said that they can no longer help me and I must liaise with this owner directly. He is exceptionally difficult and rude and has put the phone down on me when trying to sort the problem out previously. 

Please can you let me know how I am able to legally proceed with this issue?

New real estate industry initiative
In today’s technology-driven era, electronic business solutions continue to replace historically manual systems and processes. These solutions have helped many industries to speed up their operations, drive overall efficiency, and provide better value offerings to their customers. 

REASA (Real Estate Agencies of South Africa) is a newly formed industry initiative tasked with forging a path for the real estate industry of South Africa as it transitions into the digital era. REASA aims to improve efficiency in the real estate sector through the innovative application of technological solutions and serves to protect the interests of the real estate industry by providing cost-effective and powerful online marketing channels for its participants. 

In order to make this possible, REASA has appointed as its technology and media partner. is a leading platform in online property marketing. The recently expanded property portal sees over 620,000 monthly unique visitors across and the newly acquired SAHometraders websites, and, according to the DMMA, generates more than 15 million page views per month.     

Have confidence in SA property market
The decision by the Reserve Bank to maintain the repo rate at 5.5 percent is one of the many reasons to have confidence in the property market.

Rudi Botha, chief executive officer of Betterbond says homebuyers and investors can look forward to real price growth within the next 18 to 24 months.

“South Africa currently has much better fundamentals driving the property market than most other countries, including a still-growing black middle class and an increasing number of people with good jobs and an appetite for home ownership.”

Botha explains that these aspirations have been fuelled this year by above-inflation wage increases to many government employees and union members.

This has been evident in Betterbond’s statistics that revealed that the number of home purchases by black buyers, as a percentage of the total number of purchases has increased from 42 percent to 52 percent in the past 12 months.

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