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January 2018 House Price Index
South Africa - FNB
The FNB House Price Index’s year-on-year growth slowed in January, after prior months of acceleration

A mild slowing in year-on-year house price growth at the start of 2018, we believe, is not yet reflective of certain positive economic developments which appear to be taking place. Economic growth had already emerged from last summer’s recession in the winter quarters of 2017, and the Leading Business Cycle Indicators of both the SARB and OECD have been pointing to possibly improved economic growth in the near term.

In addition, the change in leadership in the ruling party in December appears to have been seen in a positive light by many, assisting in a significant improvement in investor sentiment and indeed the Rand of late.

We would anticipate that a significantly improved national mood, along with signs of strong economic growth to come, which would in turn support better employment and Household Disposable Income growth, should lead to some strengthening in residential demand and mildly stronger average house price growth this year.

The stronger Rand, should it be sustained, also has implications for inflation (lowering imported goods prices), and is supportive of our FNB expectation of either sideways movement in interest rates through 2018, or even a possible interest rate cut.
FNB-Property-Barometer_Jan 2018

Joburg property owners can help shape rates
South Africa - IolProperty
As the city of Joburg approaches its new financial year, which includes increases in services, residents have been invited to public participation meetings. The city is calling on all property owners to help shape the 2018/2019 property rates policy by taking part in the public consultation meetings that will be held across the city.

The first phase of the public meetings started on January 27 and will continue until February 28. The annual review of the rates policy is a legal requirement to ensure that the city complies with the Municipal Property Rates Act 6 of 2004.

An insider's guide to inspecting a show house
South Africa - Rawson
Professional home inspections are a vital part of buying a home, Tony Clarke, Managing Director of the Rawson Property Group, shares his tips on spotting potential problems. These DIY checks are just the first step of the process, and should always be followed by a professional inspection – even if you don’t find any red flags.

Leaks, dampness and water-damage - Ceilings
According to Clarke, ceilings give great clues to the condition of a property. Stains or sagging suggest past or present leaks from the roof, geyser or water pipes, and mould is a good indicator of poor ventilation or potential damp problems. Dark marks around light fittings could also be a sign of electrical problems, and smoke-stains near a fireplace are a sure sign that the chimney doesn’t draw properly.Home-inspection-checklist “It’s also a good idea to ask about things like ceiling insulation,” says Clarke. “It can make a big difference to the liveability of a home.”

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