Property 24/10 - 423

How Ramaphosa can turn South Africa’s economy around
Disappointing economic growth figures and a sharply weaker rand, since its strong point of about R11.55 to the US dollar in late February this year, have given South Africans a sharp reality check, demonstrating that while Cyril Ramaphosa’s presidency had revitalised the country’s sense of optimism, deep-seated structural economic challenges remain.

Investors assessing the country’s progress over the coming months must ignore the political noise and look instead to the key metrics to judge government’s effectivity, says Citadel Head of Fund Research and Portfolio Manager, Yolanda Naudé.

“For instance, President Ramaphosa’s biggest achievement since winning the ANC National Elective Conference last year has been getting elected as president, placing competent leaders into crucial positions and restoring confidence to some extent in government,” she notes.

Value-for-money suburbs in Gauteng, KZN and Western Cape
With the rand regaining some ground and inflation surprising on the downside last week, existing and aspirant home buyers will be relieved at the Monetary Policy Committee’s (MPC) decision on 20 September not to increase the repo rate.

So says Dr Andrew Golding, chief executive of the Pam Golding Property group, who notes that although the MPC did not raise interest rates last week, persistent rand weakness this year, rising inflation expectations and repeated petrol price hikes suggest that the first hike of the new interest rate cycle may occur in late 2018 rather than in 2019 as previously anticipated.

“In a property market largely sentiment-driven, we’ve recently seen evidence of recovery in demand gathering momentum, particularly among first-time home buyers, who will be further encouraged by the steady and relatively low interest rate.”

Buyers beware, an offer to purchase is legally binding
While it is currently a buyers’ market and there are many properties from which buyers can choose, this does not mean a buyer can simply change their mind after signing an offer to purchase for an existing property.

This is according to Debbie Justus-Ferns, manager of Renprop Residential sales, who notes that many buyers don’t seem to understand that an offer to purchase is a legally-binding document. It is not simply like buying an item of clothing and returning it to the store.

She explains that the offer to purchase is a purchase agreement which contains all the terms and conditions attached to the purchase of the property. In a home sale process, once a buyer has found a home they like and can afford, they submit an offer to purchase to the seller, outlining the price they are willing to pay for the property. In the offer to purchase provision is made for the terms and conditions of the payment of the purchase price agreed upon, the occupation date and other conditions pertaining to the purchase of the property.

How to market property to these 11 types of buyers
In the competitive real estate market, agents need to have an advantage when selling property. Getting into the mind of the 'perfect buyer' and figuring out who they are and why they would want to buy a specific home is key.

“When marketing a home one needs to try and determine the profile of the buyer for the specific property. In order to attract the right buyer the marketing needs to be focused and directed to that targeted audience, which will result in a quicker sale, not leaving the property overexposed,” says Craig Hutchison, CEO Engel & Völkers Southern Africa.

Must-knows for buying and owning heritage property in SA
Your home might be old, but does that automatically make it a heritage property? Well, according to the National Heritage Resources Act of 1999, if your home has been around for more than 60 years, technically speaking, the answer to that question is ‘yes’.

According to the act, “no person may alter or demolish any structure or part of a structure which is older than 60 years without a permit issued by the relevant provincial heritage resources authority”.

This rule exists in the interest of preserving parts of our past for the benefit of succeeding generations. In short, what this means for you as a homeowner of a property older than 60 years is that you will need to get in touch with your relevant Provincial Heritage Resources Authority (a list of the various provincial websites can be found at the end of this article) before you can go ahead with any structural changes to your home.

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