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A generation that does not need parking
South Africa - IolProperty
Could parking lots become obsolete?

It's an international trend and while South Africa lags behind, the cards are already on the table to have bays repurposed in the future.

Neil Gardner, chief executive of Gardner Property Solutions, an experienced developer instrumental in bringing micro units to South Africa, says, for instance, parking bays at the1 on Albert development in Woodstock are sold separately and only every second purchaser buys a parking bay. This highlights the trend of a younger market choosing not to own cars and instead use public transport, bicycles and service providers such as Uber.

"That parking uptake is low at the development should please city planners who are encouraging developers to futureproof parking areas by putting in sufficient floor-to-ceiling height to encourage parking areas to become apartments. It is envisaged public transport's share of the market will increase dramatically and private transport will decrease. This will take pressure off roads," says Gardner.

Credit and mortgage advances
South Africa - Absa
Subdued household credit and mortgage balances growth in Q1 2018

The value of outstanding credit balances in the South African household sector (R1 564,1 billion at the end of March) showed growth of 3,9% year-on-year (y/y) up to the end of the first quarter of 2018. Year-on-year growth in secured credit balances was marginally lower at end-March, whereas growth in unsecured credit balances accelerated somewhat up to the end of the first quarter.

Household secured credit balances, consisting of mortgage and instalment sales balances, increased by 3,7% y/y to R1 195,7 billion (76,4% of total household credit balances) in the first three months of the year. Mortgage balances growth slowed down further on a yearon- year basis up to end-March (see below), whereas growth in instalment sales balances was unchanged at 6% y/y at the end of March from end-February.

Growth in the value of household unsecured credit balances (R368,4 billion and 23,6% of total household credit balances) accelerated further to 4,5% y/y up to end-March (3% y/y at end-January and 4,1% y/y at end-February this year). General loans and advances balances (mainly consisting of personal loans and micro finance and with a share of 58,6% in unsecured balances), increased by 4,5% y/y to R215,7 billion up to the end of March after showing growth of 4,4% y/y at end-February.
Credit and mortgage advances (Mar 2018)

Fraud in the real estate industry – an increasingly sophisticated and prevalent threat
South Africa - eProp
Buying and selling property is a complex process, made all the more daunting by a multitude of potential pitfalls that can compromise a sale, but even more perilous is the proliferation of brazen fraudsters whose increasingly sophisticated scams are not only fleecing buyers and sellers but also property practitioners.

Strident technological advances and the convenience of instant access to information and electronic communication have made our lives easier in many ways, but it has also opened up a whole new world of opportunities for fraudsters.

“Con artists are by no means a new phenomenon in the industry,” says Lew Geffen, Chairman of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty, “but it has become far more prevalent in recent years with a spike in digital fraud prompting financial institutions to urge clients and property professionals to be vigilant and ensure they verify all credentials.”

According to Lara Colananni, Specialist Conveyancing Attorney from Guthrie Colananni Attorneys, there has been such a significant increase in scams perpetrated by the electronic interception of communication between attorneys, estate agents and their clients that the Attorneys Indemnity Insurance Fund no longer coverers attorneys who fall victim.

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