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Residential property bouncing back
RealEstateWeb - South Africa
Property prices on upward trajectory - Deeds Office stats latest

Lightstone's June repeat sales indices, released on Wednesday, confirm that house prices are leaving the doldrums and heading towards positive terrain.

South Africa's residential property prices slipped into negative terrain in late 2008 after growth slowed steadily from late 2004.

Interest rates have been chopped repeatedly since December, and data released by banks and other organisations are increasingly showing the benefits of lower interest on debt repayments. As interest rates have declined, so house price deflation appears to have slowed.

Mortgage originator ooba said this week its books are already showing price growth year-on-year of about 1,8%.

Crime situation still a cause for concern says Rawson MD
Rawson - South Africa
South African property owners have over the past 20 months weathered several major storms with commendable success - but one factor, crime, is still a cause of concern and a serious dampener on the property market, says Tony Clarke, MD of Rawson Properties.

"Those who own property in SA," said Clarke, "should have been impressed by the way confidence has returned to the property sector - but this confidence would have been at a far higher level if only we had not had a serious crime problem."

The property market, he said, had successfully come through a number of major crises: the Zimbabwean crisis, the Eskom power cuts, the global financial meltdown, the National Credit Act (which more than any other factor slowed down house sales), the banks' inability to give mortgage bonds as previously, the Polokwane Congress and the establishment of the Zuma regime (with a new but largely unspecified agenda). Then, too, there had been the new, radical insistence on time-consuming training for agents to bring them up to professional levels - a wise but, in Clarke's words, an "expensive" move.

Govt won't force banks to ease credit extension: Gordhan
Business Report - South Africa
Government will not intervene legislatively to force commercial banks to ease credit extension, according to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Monday.

"Such an approach will not work, and the global financial crisis has demonstrated quite clearly that forcing credit onto the less creditworthy customers can put the entire financial system's stability at risk," he said in written reply to a parliamentary question by the Democratic Alliance.

"Government will therefore not seek legislative powers in this regard," Gordhan said.
Business Report

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