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20th Aug 2022

Architect Africa Online

Africa's Leading Architecture Aggregator

Safety and lifestyle are what buyers want in 2022

The property sector, especially the burgeoning North Coast of KwaZulu-Natal, is a prime example of how Covid-19 has reshaped the buying and living habits of South Africans. Stefan Botha, director of property specialists Rainmaker Marketing, takes a closer look.

Stefan Botha

Every single year for the last five years the greater KwaZulu-Natal North Coast area, which includes Salt Rock and Ballito, has seen the total value of property transfers increase on average by 20% per annum.

According to Lightstone data, the increase recorded between October 2020 and September 2021 saw the total value of transfers in the area escalate by 69% to a staggering R5,7bn within that 12-month period – that’s three times the amount it has historically been for this region.

What’s driving the boom?

Research has shown that since Covid-19, consumers are prioritising lifestyle above all. The sharp increase in semigration figures linked to remote working as a result of Covid-19, is testament to that.

According to Rainmaker’s National Residential Property Trends report, state-of-the-art security is also a major driving factor for consumers when considering property purchases, as well as having beautifully landscaped gardens, access to a cutting-edge clubhouse, and free and stable Wi-Fi. Location, however, is deemed to be the key driver of property growth.

The property trends report also indicates that coastal provinces are in high demand, with the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal considered as ideal lifestyle, holiday, and retirement destinations.

That explains why there is seemingly a huge number of people from areas like Durban North, Morningside, Berea and the upper west area of Durban, as well as Johannesburg, moving to KZN’s North Coast.


Estates galore

This area is renowned for its wide variety of gated lifestyle estates.

Newer estates such as Seaton, Zululami Coastal Forest Estate and Elaleni Coastal Forest Estate, as well as developments like Zimbali Lakes Resort, demonstrate the fact that lifestyle and safety are at the top of property buyers’ lists.

Salta Sibaya deserves a special mention: over a nine-month period this estate was the best-performing estate nationally from a sales perspective, achieving a historic R1,8bn in sales since March 2021.

One for all

The one thing that KZN North Coast residential developments seem to have done right, is combining natural assets like forests and the ocean with state-of-the-art facilities. Especially since the lockdowns, people seem to value their home space more because they spend significantly more time there.

There’s no doubt that there’s been a move towards developments, like the recently revamped Odyssey Ballito precinct, that offers consumers everything from retail to commercial amenities, and facilities catering to adults and children at the same address.

North Coast developments are ideally suited to meet these needs, especially for millennials who want a flexible lifestyle accommodating their fluid travel, work and living requirements. As they tend to spend less time at home, they are not concerned about the size of their homes, as long as they have access to an abundance of shared and secure lifestyle facilities within that space.

Seaton property on the North Coast KwaZulu-Natal


Low interest rates boost investment

It would be remiss not to attribute the substantial growth and demand for property in 2021 on KwaZulu-Natal’s North Coast – and in the country in general – to record low interest rates, which have stimulated the market and bridged the cost gap between renting and owning.

Between 2003 and 2016 residential property development opportunities typically targeted a higher income market, with homes starting from around R4m. Although this attracted many investors, the shift in price-point from 2017 onwards saw the establishment of new gated estates with offerings coming in under the R1m mark.

This naturally brought about an increase in a more diverse product offering within the development space. Ballito Groves was the first to introduce entry-level estate living in Ballito, which ultimately opened the market for people to enjoy secure and luxury living on the North Coast from a R0,7m price point upwards. This kind of offering has become more commonplace and provides first-time buyers access to estate living, while still being complementary to other established estates.

Growing demand

According to Lightstone, approximately 30 new families make the Salt Rock and Ballito area their home each month, proof of the growth opportunities in this part of the province and country.

Bliss Ballito, a new development launching in March this year, is further proof of the current unwavering demand that has already generated over 5,000 interested parties since the teaser campaign was released in mid-December last year.

It’s no surprise then that big national players in the development space like JT Ross, Balwin Properties, International Housing Solutions (IHS), True North Developments and Auria Senior Living, are currently investing in the KZN North Coast.

Tongaat Hulett Property has also joined these ranks again, creating new land opportunities to developers that include significant infrastructure within the Sibaya Coastal Precinct.


The post Safety and lifestyle are what buyers want in 2022 appeared first on Everything Property.

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