Property 24/10 - 58

Join the Clicks for Bricks Challenge
The South African housing backlog is expected to take another two decades to clear and according to the latest statistics from the President's Coordinating Council, 2.1 million homes are still required for 12 million people. Yet, Habitat for Humanity South Africa maintains that simple, decent, affordable housing is a vital platform for effecting change from one generation to the next for families, communities and South Africa at large. has teamed up with Habitat for Humanity South Africa to launch the Property24 Clicks for Bricks Challenge. To contribute towards building the house, visit and simply click on the "like" button.

To make a contribution towards housing in South Africa and raise awareness around the country's housing shortage, has teamed up with Habitat for Humanity South Africa to launch the Property24 Clicks for Bricks Challenge.

For every "like" that receives on its Facebook page,, R5 will be donated towards the R91 000 cost of building a home. The goal is to achieve 18 200 likes, donate the R91 000 to Habitat for Humanity South Africa, and then invite members of the page to be part of the building team that constructs the actual home. will share the challenge's progress with its Facebook community via a fun and interactive application that portrays the construction stages of the home being built as the target draws nearer.

Cheaper to buy than to build
It is about 33,1% cheaper to buy an existing house than it is to buy a new house according to figures released by Absa in its quarterly Housing Review. Moreover, mortgage rate repayments are, in general, 33,5% cheaper now than in December 2008.

The costs of building a new house continued to rise sharply despite SA's tough economic conditions making it much cheaper to buy an existing house.

The combination of lower mortgage repayments and the banks' selective relaxation of mortgage lending criteria over the past two years have contributed to an improvement in the affordability of housing says Jacques du Toit, senior property analyst at Absa Home Loans.

He says that the South African economy is expected to grow by about 3,8% in real terms this year with real household consumption expenditure rising by about 5%. In addition the ratio of household-debt-to-disposable-income dropped to 78% and the cost of servicing that debt declined to about 7% of disposable income, mainly as a result of lower interest rates.

Major development projects for KZN
A major development project on the North Coast of KwaZulu-Natal is expected to create about 60 000 jobs during construction and up to 93 000 jobs once it is completed.

The iDube Trade Port and the multi-billion rand Wewe Driefontein mixed-use development is expected to boost the province's manufacturing and services sector by R48,7-billion in gross value for the local economy.

According to Helena Jacobs, a town and regional planner and consultant on the project, the development would result in real economic growth for the province. The environmental impact assessment started 14 months ago and the zoning process for both developments is underway.

Fixing damaged brickwork
Despite its importance, the brickwork of a house needs relatively little maintenance to keep it in good order. But as a result, it is often neglected to the point where it ceases to do its job properly. Under these circumstances, penetrating damp, and a shabby-looking exterior are often the result.

Loose and crumbling bricks, minor cracks, bad pointing and plant growth are all defects that can easily be tackled with a small investment of time and effort. And although you will not be able to repair more serious cracking until the cause has been put right, monitoring damage will give you an idea of where the source lies.

No municipal rates for tribal land
Owners of tribal lands in South Africa will not have to pay rates in terms of the Municipal Property Rates Amendment Bill that has been accepted by the Cabinet. It will go through a process of public hearings and calls for comment over the next several weeks.

In terms of the Bill, a contentious clause calling for rates to be paid on traditional lands has been dropped. According to the Financial and Fiscal Commission (FFC) - which advises the government on the impact of legislation - about 29% of South Africa's land falls under traditional authorities.

There are 231 local municipalities with traditional lands and at last 98 of these have traditional lands that cover more than half of the land under their jurisdiction.

Another historic home on the market
An historic 19th Century Cape Dutch farmhouse in Mowbray, Cape Town is on the market for R5,45-million. It once formed part of the Bloemendal Estate on the banks of the Liesbeek River but was part of the sub-division of the farm that occurred many years ago.

This restored Cape Dutch farmhouse dating back to the early 1800s has come onto the market in the Cape Town suburb of Mowbray at R5,45m.

Bloemdal Estate, built in 1790, comprised the farms of Liesbeek and Valkenberg and records show the estate was granted to Jan Adriaan van Schoor in 1791 and then transferred to Cornelis Mostert Jnr in 1808. It is thought that Mostert built the house that is currently on sale in Mowbray.

According to Pam Golding Properties' Howard Markham, the Cape Heritage Consultancy identified the Mowbray home as having "outstanding historic, aesthetic and architectural value". Early plans of the Blemendal Estate show that this building formed the eastern edge of a central courtyard and was close to the main manor house.

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