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More than six in ten buyers find their home on a portal – but few use online conveyancers
UK - Property Industry Eye
Fewer than 20% of home buyers use an online conveyancer, although the majority use the internet to find their property. But while the national property portals “lead the way”, local estate agents remain key.

The new Residential Conveyancing Consumer Research Report 2019 quizzed 562 people who bought a property in the past two years. It found that 63% found their new home on a portal, while the same proportion used a traditional conveyancer rather than a volume online firm.

Just 19% used such a service, and most of those were younger buyers. Only 10% of over-55s used an online bulk conveyancing service. The researchers said: “Online may be the channel for property searches but online conveyancing services have yet to take a significant market share.

“There are mixed messages from the survey regarding online conveyancing services.

“A majority say that they are an important choice factor when looking for a conveyancer, but responses to a later question asking about possible improvements to the conveyancing process show only limited interest in these online services.”
Property Industry Eye

Demand-supply gap still wide in property market
South Africa - Property360
Unrealistic selling prices are fuelling the problem in KZN, say agents
Statistics may show that the gap between property supply and demand in South Africa is closing slightly, but in some parts of KwaZulu-Natal, this is far from the case. Morningside has a large supply of stock on the market with “very few” buyers out there, says Kim Woods, Tyson Properties’ branch manager in the area.

“The last time we experienced this gap was in 2007.” Sellers holding on to unrealistic prices are fuelling the problem, insisting on keeping their properties listed at these high prices.

“Sellers are taking properties off the market at our instruction only once the property has become stale. We suggest taking them off for two to three months and then hitting the market again with a refreshed narrative and some new pictures – and hopefully a reduced price.”

Residential building statistics and property stock
South Africa - Absa
Residential building activity in the first three quarters of 2019 Levels of building activity in the South African market for new housing (see explanatory note) showed diverging trends in the first three quarters of 2019. The planning phase of new housing, as reflected by the number of building plans approved by local government institutions, contracted across all three segments on a year-on-year basis over this period. However, the construction phase of new housing, i.e. the volume of housing units reported as being completed, showed a marked improvement up to September compared with the corresponding period last year.

The number of new housing units for which building plans were approved was down by 16,1% year-on-year (y/y), or 7 533 plans, to 39 402 plans in the 9-month period up to September. The drop in building plans approved was evident across all three segments of housing.

New housing units reported as being completed increased by 29,1% y/y, or 8 048 units, to a total of 35 703 units in the period January to September this year. The segment of flats and townhouses was the main driver of the growth in the construction phase, showing growth of 73,1% y/y in the nine months up to September. Whereas the planning phase of the flat and townhouse segment contracted in the 9-month period, the strong growth in the construction phase of housing in this segment could have been the result of lags in the reporting of completed units to local government institutions. The flat and townhouse segment has become a strong driver of new housing over time, reflecting changes in lifestyles in especially the country’s major metropolitan areas. This came against the background of urbanisation that increased to a total of 66,4%, or more than 38 million people, in 2018 from a level of 57% of the population (about 26 million people) urbanised in 2000.
Building statistics Sep 2019

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