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There's no accounting for taste, says judge
Iol.co.za - South Africa
Judges should not be called on to settle disputes over "notoriously subjective" issues of property aesthetics, says Cape deputy judge president Jeanette Traverso.

The colour and design of houses seems to be a hot topic in Cape Town and many people seek court intervention to settle their differences.

Speaking at a property convention, Traverso said it was a bad idea for courts to venture into this area given the changing shape of Cape Town's property landscape.

"As diverse societies in South Africa mingle, increasingly different building styles are coming to the fore," she said.

"In Bishopscourt, for example, if someone buys a plot of land next to you and builds a cultural village, could you object? I'm afraid, if past precedents are anything to go by, the answer is no".

Banks and supermarkets become lawyers
Myfinances.co.uk - UK
The line between banks and supermarkets has been blurring in recent years, and soon solicitors' offices could be added to the mix

On top of finance appearing next to food in supermarkets and bank branches opening coffee shops, legal services are about to be included with your morning banker's draught and cappuccino.

This year the Legal Services Bill will come into force, allowing divorce, residential property conveyancing and will writing to be provided by non-traditional firms.

And, although picking up some divorce papers while queuing to pay for the weekly shop is not likely to become commonplace, there is significant interest in these services.

Super growth in house prices is over
Moneyweb.co.za - South Africa
SA interest rates have plunged, fuelling house price rises of 30% pa for the past six years - but this was an once-in-a-lifetime transition that won't happen again soon.

This was the view of Wayne McCurrie, deputy MD of Advantage Asset Managers at the Sanlam Investment Seminars held last week.

McCurrie points out that interest rates have fallen from a long-term old range of 16-20% to a new range of 10,5-12%, enabled by strict monetary policy and the conquest of inflation.

McCurrie warned that the housing market is not expected to do as well as it has in the past.

"Growth of 30% a year is not normal," he added.

L&R pays R7bn for Waterfront
Business.iafrica.com - South Africa
The L&R Consortium, which has British, South African and Dubai elements, has been named by Transnet as the successful bidder for the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town. The bid came in at R7.04-billion.

Among leading South African black business leaders involved in the project are Vincent Maphai and Hassan Adams.

The Victoria and Alfred Waterfront is being sold by Transnet - the umbrella transport parastatal - and its pension funds, Transnet Second Defined Benefit Fund, the Transnet Pension Fund and the Transnet Retirement Fund.

L&R Consortium, known in full as the London and Regional Consortium - through Lexshell 44 General Trading - has been selected in a transaction process which began in May, but which has been characterised by secrecy.

Fractional developments gaining popularity among SA's super rich
Business Day - South Africa
There is growing demand from SA's super rich, including a substantial number of blacks, for luxury "fractional" developments, a relatively new concept in the country.

According to the Registry Collection, a high-end luxury travel-exchange programme which enables members to travel internationally and stay in luxury fractional developments, about a third of the buyers into these schemes are SA's black elite.

Robert Kroger, portfolio manager for the Registry Collection's Africa division, which has been operating in SA for about a year, says that, while there have always been concepts such as timeshare and syndication in SA, the luxury fractional development concept is new to the market.
Business Day

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