Property 24/10 - 251

How to invest in industrial property
During the last three years, interest rates have been low and the rand has been strong, fuelling the growth of many businesses. With growth and expansion comes the need for larger premises, and as many business owners begin to search for new locations, they will quickly realise that it is almost as cost effective to buy property as it is to rent, hence many tenants become owners.

Epping Industrial Property shares tips and advice on how to invest in industrial property.

1. Finding a suitable property
The first step is to determine a location where one wants to invest. Drive around the area and make sure you are familiar with it. Next, contact industrial property brokers (more than two) that specialise in that specific area and discuss what they think would suit you, and what type of industrial property is in high demand.

Positive pointers for SA property in 2015
Interest in buying more expensive homes, those with a value of R4 million to R10 million, has increased, and the average value of the individual bonds being applied for this year is consequently likely to be 14% to 16% higher than in 2014 according to figures quoted by Mike van Alphen, National Manager of the Rawson Property Group’s bond origination division, Rawson Finance.

Tony Clarke, Managing Director of the Rawson Property Group, says this is just one of many indicators giving reason to believe that residential property in South Africa is in for a satisfactory 2015.

Top 2015 retail trends in South Africa
Although muted growth is expected for the sector, retailers targeting the value chain will continue to show growth slightly higher than sector averages.

Preston Gaddy, Divisional Director: Strategic Retail Leasing at Broll Property Group, says given the current state of the economy, we will see muted growth coming from most retail categories.

However, he points out that national fashion retailers will still seek to expand but will be far more cautious in their selection of new sites. Meanwhile, grocery chains continue to target the mass market and the opportunities in rural and township areas, however, these developments are starting to “dry up”. Grocery chains will also seek to have an increased presence in smaller format stores, he says.

SAPOA Convention in Durban next month
It’s that time again when the entire property industry meets under one roof for the highly anticipated South African Property Owners Association (SAPOA) Convention.

Regarded as South Africa’s premier property conference of the year, the Convention will once again present an exceptional opportunity for both local and international property professionals and practitioners to amalgamate in the discussion of the latest trends and investment opportunities as well as challenges.

2015’s Convention will not only address the latest trends, challenges and prospects in the sector, but will also highlight and showcase the sheer hard work, the raw talent and the sterling achievements that encompass the South African real estate industry on a daily basis.

Estate agents must be up to date with training
As of this month, all agents will have to have registered for their Continuous Professional Development points with the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB), where they will have to accumulate 60 points over a three-year rolling period.

The yearly allocation is 15 verifiable points and five non-verifiable points. Agents will be issued a swipe card by the EAAB, which should be presented at all training and workshops that are attended, as this will be their way of recording the sessions attended and the points accumulated.

This is according to Annette Evans, regional general manager of the Institute of Estate Agents SA, Western Cape, who says agents must realise that this programme is compulsory and that, as in many other professions, continuous learning has to take place because of changes in legislation, technology, etc.

Can property owner cut tenant's electricity?
On 14 April 2015, the Western Cape Division of the High Court handed down judgment in a matter, which caused a great stir in the property industry. In this matter the court granted an order authorising the property owner to terminate the electricity supply to the premises, occupied by the respondent.

It is of utmost importance to emphasise that this judgment does not provide a property owner with the right to disconnect utility supplies to a property due to non-payment of utilities or any other charges, without a court order.

The position regarding spoliation was not changed by this judgment, on the contrary Judge Schippers specifically mentioned that it was necessary for the applicant to bring the application by stating: “The applicant, however, cannot take the law into its own hands by simply cutting off the respondent’s power supply, hence this application.”

Green features help to sell homes
More and more home buyers in today’s property market are becoming interested in homes that offer green elements according to Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, who says the term ‘green’ home has become somewhat of a buzz word in the housing market, as a growing number of home buyers consider energy efficiency as a highly important factor when searching for the perfect property.

“Buyers are looking for both energy-saving features and environmentally-friendly features. Other features at the top of many buyer’s lists are homes that are close to parks, public transportation and suburbs with walkways,” says Goslett.

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