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Property News

Property professional of the year crowned

Johannesburg real estate owner Wendy Machanik was honoured with the inaugural property Professional of the Year for 1999 award. The competition was jointly sponsored by Permanent Bank and the real estate magazine The Property Professional.

Atlantic Beach powers ahead

Atlantic Beach golf estate on the Cape west coast is blossoming rapidly into a world class development. The first nine holes are now playable with the second nine due to open in January. The first homes are being built with occupation due before Christmas.

Forum for black estate agents formed


Formalisation of black estate agents in the residential property market was given a quantum leap with the official establishment of the South African Realtors Forum.

Tzaneen not as hard hit

Although Tzaneen's residential property market also mirrored the national downturn caused from high interest rates, the slowdown was not nearly as injurious on local home sales as the general trend. "Certainly we had a levelling off, but sales still took place and prices generally held firm," says Joan Jonker, coprincipal of Tzaneen's Homenet. Similarly Willie Jonker, reported a yearonyear improvement in business over that of last year.

Agency industry “shrinkage” is international


The estate agency industry is shrinking even in countries with low mortgage rates and high employment, where property sales are booming.

Property becoming techdriven – Geffen


Branding, proven business systems and a liberal dose of technology are the factors that will very shortly separate the really successful estate agencies from the rest, says agency principal Lew Geffen, whose own Johannesburgbased operation is now being expanded through licensing.

Umhlanga property activity up

The Gateway complex's emerging physical presence on Umhlanga's skyline, coupled with the eightyear low in homeloan interest rates are having a major impact on activity levels on the local property market. Local estate agent Marc Ardain of Homenet Ardain likened current conditions to "the old days" when demand consistently ran ahead of supply and property values ticked along at a comfortable annual 15 percent. He reports brisk sales and letting of commercial property and sales of vacant residential stands, houses and flats.

Declining inflation rate taking its toll


Fears that a declining inflation rate would take its toll on property values are being borne out, says Dr Piet Botha, chairman of Nationlink, who points out that low growth in inflation has put a damper on home price rises during 1999.

“Hiding” property won’t help AEAAB


People facing insolvency cannot "hide" their home or other property from their creditors by quickly "selling" it to a spouse, relative or friend for a ridiculously small sum of money.

Debunking the “boom”


Even though the residential property market has shown a marked improvement this year, it is nowhere near booming, says Johannesburg estate agency principal Lew Geffen. "Sellers would, of course, like to believe it. The trouble is that neither buyers nor the banks believe it. The banks, still holding large numbers of properties in possession, are preferring to err on the side of caution when evaluating properties, and then insisting on 10 or 20 percent deposits. Buyers thus have to come up with hefty amounts of cash.