Property 24/10 - 275

New visa requirements hit Cape Town's property market
Sales to foreign buyers across Cape Town’s Atlantic Seaboard and City Bowl are down by more than 30% year-on-year despite the more attractive pricing facilitated by the slump in the value of the rand against the pound sterling, euro and dollar according to Ian Slot, Seeff’s managing director for the Atlantic Seaboard and City Bowl, who says it seems to mirror the reduction in tourist numbers, and one has to assume there is a correlation between the two.

“Our experience has almost universally been that foreign buyers make the decision to buy when they are actually in Cape Town, so if they are not here they are less likely to buy.”

City of Jhb reverses pre-termination notices
The City of Johannesburg will reverse incorrect pre-termination notices that were issued to its customers recently.

“The city regrets causing any inconvenience to its customers who received incorrect pre-termination notices as a result of a change in their due dates for payment of services during the past two months,” said the municipality.

This was due to the implementation of the new credit control policy amended recently.

The city said it realises that the change should have been communicated better beforehand and regrets any inconvenience experienced by customers.

SA's residential property sales drop 7,1%
The slowing economy is starting to bite into the residential property market with sales and transfers dropping 7.1% in the third quarter of 2015 compared to the previous quarter according to estate agency HomeBid, whose advisor and property economist Neville Berkowitz says they tracked 71 101 transfers in the various deeds offices around South Africa for the third quarter of this year. The second quarter reflected 76 546 transfers.

“However, the good news is that average price levels countrywide have risen 1.3% for the quarter, which equates to an annualised 5.2% per annum increase in average home prices. The average home sold and transferred is now R1 188 243,” says Berkowitz.

Want to be an estate agent? Learn the basics from IEASA
A three day induction course being offered by the Institute of Estate Agents Western Cape from 28 to 30 October will offer those who are starting a career or thinking about a career in real estate an advantageous basic understanding of how the property industry works according to Annette Evans, regional general manager of the Institute, who says the course is highly recommended for all newcomers to the property industry who want to know what is needed to get started in a real estate career.

Evans says some private individuals who are considering a change to that in the property industry will benefit, as well as those agents who have left the industry and want to return. This course is also aimed at assisting agents who are about to begin their FETC Real Estate NQF4 Qualification training. Much of the assignments work is parallel with the logbook which is now compulsory for all new Fidelity fund holders.

Should I buy a home before selling my own?
Some homeowners enjoy holding on to their ability to live in their current home until they find a better alternative. Others don't want to make a financial commitment to a new home until their current home is sold or under contract according to Elaine Chetty, licensee of Seeff Richards Bay, who says factors like whether a homeowner is moving locally versus to another province or country, whether or not he or she has children in a particular school, and the homeowner's deposit play a crucial role in this decision.

Are you not sure whether you should buy another home before you sell your current one, or sell your current home first?

Chetty shares the advantages of both options so you can make the choice that is right for you:

Selling your home privately - is it a good idea?
There is a trend in close communities to try to sell homes without using the professional services of an estate agent, particularly when a school catchment area is the buyers’ focus according to Laurence van Blerck of Knight Frank Residential SA, who says private sales are more popular in countries where commission rates are high and less frequent where commission rates are lower. This type of sale can be problematic, however, and that is the main reason why using an estate agent should be the preferred choice in South Africa.

Van Blerck says there are several pitfalls for private sellers whose primary goal is to avoid paying estate agents’ commission, the first one is pricing.

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