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New online sectional title courses
Paddocks - South Africa
Sectional title is a complex subject that many people don’t quite understand; it has become evident that there is a need for additional training in the sectional title arena. Paddocks is proud to announce the launch of the Short Learning Programme initiative – a series of part-time online short courses that have been designed to increase the competence of sectional title service providers and in this way promote a higher standard of service to sectional title bodies corporate.

The short courses are approved by the University of Cape Town, Professional Development Project of the Faculty of Law, UCT Law@Work and result in a certificate issued from the University of Cape Town.

The Short Learning Programme (SLP) series of part-time short courses will all be four-weeks in length, covering four modules. Students will be tested with weekly multiple-choice-quiz assignments. A new presentation of the course will commence every 6 weeks. As a result, students can start studying when it suits them.
Online Sectional Title Course

Betterbond figures show improvement in home loan approval rate
Iol - South Africa
The extent of the improvement in the residential property market over the past two years is clearly indicated in the latest statistics from mortgage originator BetterBond, which show that home loan approval rate has risen from 61 percent in March 2011 to 69 percent last month.

During the same period, the average home purchase price paid by BetterBond clients has fluctuated, hitting a low of R780 000 last January and spiking at R960 000 last August.

But it has generally also shown an upward trend, to reach R905 000 last month, compared with R786 000 in March 2011 (a 15 percent increase).

However, BetterBond chief executive Rudi Botha notes that the average deposit percentage required by lenders has varied little over the past two years, with the result that the average home loan amount approved has risen from R700 000 in March 2011 to R738 000 last month.

"Obviously the banks are feeling increasingly comfortable about lending to the residential market again as the balance of supply and demand improves.

Household and consumer sector - March CPI
FNB - South Africa
While food and petrol prices have been a key inflation focus in recent times, they now appear to be subsiding risks, while the residential rental market surprises on the downside too.
A “downside surprise”, however, is the CPI for residential rentals. The StatsSA survey showed the CPI for Actual Rentals slowing from 4.8% previous to 4.7% year-on-year in March, while the CPI for Owner Occupied Rentals slowed from 4.2% previous to 4% in March. This comes as a surprise at a time when our perception has been one of a mildly strengthening residential rental market. Certainly some key building blocks for the rental market’s strengthening have been gradually falling into place. Firstly, since 2008 we have witnessed very low estimates for buy-to-let property buying, implying a very slow growth rate in properties available for rental, and as at the 1st quarter of 2013 the FNB Estate Agent Survey showed an estimate of only 8% of home purchases being buy-to-let purchases, still a far cry from around 25% back in 2004. And indeed, TPN (Tenant Profile Network) has in recent times been reporting many letting agents citing rental “stock constraints”.
FNB March Consumer Price Inflation

Affordable property is key to wealth creation, says study
International Housing Solutions - South Africa
The provision of affordable housing in the so-called gap market in South Africa not only resulted in improved welfare and social cohesion, but was also an important facilitator of opportunities and wealth creation, according to a new study.

The research, conducted by a team led by UCT associate professor Francois Viruly, found that those who obtained homes in this sector moved beyond viewing them as a mere shelter but saw them as an asset, and the appreciation in the value of these assets stimulated entrepreneurship, job creation and access to higher levels of education.

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