Will property prices go up after the election?
While many may be apprehensive about venturing into South Africa’s property market, the prevailing ‘buyer’s market’ may be the perfect opportunity for you to stake your claim on your dream home. The difference between ‘buying the perfect home’ and ‘buying the perfect home at the perfect price’ may just come down to perfect timing.
Mike Greeff, CEO of Greeff Christie’s International Real Estate, believes that the real estate industry is cyclical.
“While you may not necessarily feel as comfortable in one phase of the cycle as you do in another, it pays to ride it out and adopt a long-term view. The one constant in life and the real estate market is change. While we may be in a buyer’s market at the moment you may feel that time is on your side, but there is bound to be a rise in asking prices after the National Elections,” says Greeff.
Subdivide vs sectionalise your big property? The pros and cons
Subdivision and sectionalisation of land and larger erven is becoming increasingly common and, although both offer a number of financial and practical benefits, there are distinct differences which should be carefully considered when zoning and conditions within the title deed allow for both options.
“Developers have been utilising sectionalisation and subdivision for some time to meet the growing demand for housing in areas where development is limited by lack of available land, but we are now seeing private owners apportioning off their properties for a number of reasons,” says Claude McKirby, Southern Suburbs Co-Principal for Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty.
“There are significant financial advantages to be gained, including a cash injection to ease financial burden, creating an additional source of income and considerably reduced maintenance costs, rates and taxes. One can potentially achieve a higher return on investment when selling, and proceeds can also be used to finance a new house on the same erf.”
I got a home loan, but it’s too expensive - can I cancel my OTP?
In most cases when a person buys a property, he or she will have to apply for a home loan, and this would be written into the offer to purchase (OTP) as a suspensive condition, giving a certain timeframe for the bond to be obtained by the bank and accepted by the buyer.
What happens, though, if all seems fine, until the bank sends their quotation through to the buyer and he or she finds the interest rate is too high or the amount they are willing to finance is too low in terms of the loan to value? Either of these scenarios would possibly make the property unaffordable to them, or an unacceptable proposition, says Michael Bauer, managing director of property company SAProperty.com.
Could the buyer protect themselves by including the condition that apart from the sale being subject to their home loan being obtained with acceptable terms to the buyer at their sole discretion, that it has to be at a favourable interest rate and the full amount needed?
Smart homes: The future of home security and insurance
Automated homes commonly known as ‘smart homes’, will generate data about your behaviour and security level, and in the near future this could mean that your insurer will offer you more accurate home contents or building insurance premiums based on your levels of risk.
Smart home adoption is on the rise, and technology now makes it possible for homeowners to adjust their music, ambient lighting or home security settings on their cell phones, and this is only the beginning, according to Vera Nagtegaal, the executive head of Hippo.co.za.
According to the report Smart Home Market - Global Forecast to 2024, the smart home market is estimated to grow from US$76.6 billion in 2018 to US$151.4 billion by 2024.
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