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Industrial properties desperately need a turnaround in the manufacturing and retail sectors
Rode - South Africa
Until there is a significant turnaround in the performances of the manufacturing and retail sectors, strong growth in industrial market rentals cannot be expected.

In the second quarter of 2015, manufacturing output volumes were down by about 1% when compared to the same quarter a year earlier. The retail sector’s performance was slightly better with sales volumes up by roughly 3% over the same period. However, as the corresponding graph shows, the growth in output and sales volumes of these sectors has, in general, waned since 2010.

Households are overwhelmed by debt, experiencing high unemployment, modest salary increases and low levels of confidence. These are all factors that presage modest growth in retail sales volumes.

Credit and mortgage advances
Absa - South Africa
Household credit and mortgage balances growth up on base effects

The value of outstanding credit balances in the South African household sector increased by 4,2% year-on-year (y/y) up to the end of August 2015, with growth rising above the 4% level for the first time since July last year. This was the result of faster growth in the components of mortgage balances, overdrafts and general loans and advances, whereas growth in instalment sales balances dropped to its lowest level since May 2010.

Growth in the value of household secured credit balances (R1 098,9 billion and 75,8% of total household credit balances) was up to 3,4% y/y at end-August from 2,9% y/y at the end of July, supported by an uptick in mortgage balances growth. However, growth in instalment sales balances, 22,2% of household secured balances and largely related to vehicle finance, continued to slow down to a level of only 2,9% y/y in the eight-month period up to the end of August. The downward trend in instalment sales balances growth is in line with new vehicle sales contracting by 3,3% y/y in the first eight months of the year.

Household unsecured credit balances (R350,8 billion and 24,2% of total household credit balances) recorded growth of 6,8% y/y at end-August, up from 5,9% y/y the end of July. The acceleration in growth in unsecured balances was largely the result of some base effects from a year ago in some components. Growth in general loans and advances (60,6% of unsecured balances and mainly comprising personal loans and micro finance) increased to 6,0% y/y at end-August from 5,6% y/y at end-July. Growth in overdraft balances, with a share of 10,7% in unsecured balances, increased from 0,4% y/y at the end of June to 4,7% y/y at end-July and 10,0% y/y at the end of August, mainly driven by base effects.
Credit and mortgage advances

What happens after your offer to purchase is accepted?
Rawson - South Africa
There's nothing quite like that moment you hear your offer to purchase has been accepted, but once the initial thrill wears off, it can be a little daunting looking ahead to the complexities of the registration and transfer process.

All kinds of different attorneys and representatives are suddenly involved, and it can feel overwhelming, especially for the first time buyer.

"It is a complicated process, admits Tony Clarke, Managing Director of the Rawson Property Group, but it's also one that happens all the time, and is very standardised and streamlined these days. All the professionals involved are highly qualified, and with the help of a good real estate company, it really shouldn’t be too stressful a time for the buyer or the seller."

"Unless it's a cash purchase, the first thing to be done after an offer to purchase is accepted is for the buyer to finalise their bond. "Most offer to purchase agreements are subject to bond approval, so it’s a vital first step to get the ball rolling, says Clarke. The buyer will need to supply their chosen bank - or bond originator - with a copy of the signed agreement, and the bank will then arrange a property valuation and credit check before giving their approval in the form of a letter of grant."

Bodies corporate explained
IolProperty - South Africa
When you sign an offer to purchase a sectional title unit you are agreeing to the conditions of buying into a scheme and become a member of a group. This group, the body corporate, is responsible for the day to day running and financial management of the scheme, says Shan Hulbert, sales manager at Knight Frank Residential SA.

The body corporate is the collective name given to the owners of the units and common property within a sectional title scheme and this comes into being when the developer transfers the first unit to its new owner.

The developer, in fact, needs to call a meeting within 60 days of the body corporate being formed and at this inaugural meeting, according to the Prescribed Management Rules, will hand over the sectional plan and a certificate from the local authority indicating that all the rates due by him have been paid.

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