Even The Super Wealthy Are Tightening Their Belts

Even The Super Wealthy Are Tightening Their Belts

Top End of Market Down by 50%, but Cape Still Achieves Highest Prices

Despite the notably slower market above R20 million, the Cape continues to achieve the highest overall prices in the country. Samuel Seeff, chairman of the Seeff Property Group says that the economic downturn has affected the various sectors of the property market in different ways.

While the sub-R1.5 million (below R3 million in the luxury areas) price band remains fairly active, there was a notable slow-down in R20 million-plus value sales as buyers take time out and wait and watch as things unfold in the country, he says.

While this top end of the market is down by about 50% from the highs of 2015-2017, Propstats data shows that in Cape Town, just under R1.6bn in super luxury sales were concluded last year, about R1bn thereof on the Atlantic Seaboard alone. Seeff concluded 10 of the highest value sales in Cape Town last year with a combined value of around R380 million, most to local buyers.

The three highest value sales concluded in Cape Town include R80 million in Bantry Bay (sold by Seeff), R62 million in Constantia and R57 million in Clifton, R55 million in Fresnaye (sold by Seeff) and R41.5m in Mouille Point (joint Seeff sale). Seeff also sold a vacant plot in Fresnaye for R28m.

Camps Bay experienced one of the slowest sales years in recent times, it sold the highest volume of R20m-plus sales with eight units and only managed a highest price of R33m.

In the country’s financial powerhouse areas of Johannesburg and Sandton, there were only just over a dozen high-value sales in the top-end areas with a combined value of just over R380 million. More than half of these were in Sandhurst, although only with a highest price of R30m. The highest value sales were recorded for Bryanston at around R33m to just over R58m.

Most of the high-value sales in Cape Town were cash deals according to Ross Levin, Director for Seeff Atlantic Seaboard, Waterfront and City Bowl. Only about a handful were to foreign buyers such as two sales to UK buyers, being for R26m in Bantry Bay (R26m) and R28m in Camps Bay/Bakoven.

While there is still demand for high-end homes in top locations, buyers are now negotiating strongly. The upside, he says, is that there has been a notable rise in new listings giving buyers an excellent choice of stock. At the same time, sellers are beginning to look at lower offers.

While there were no high-end sales recorded for Bishopscourt, some seven units sold above R20 million in Constantia Upper. James Lewis, MD for Seeff South Suburbs and Hout Bay notes that here too, listings have risen notably over the last two years, giving buyers a much broader choice and allowing for more room to negotiate.

Additionally, Seeff also concluded three sales at the Kerzner Estate in Leeukoppie at record prices of R30.5m to R37 million.

The highest prices achieved on the Atlantic Seaboard include:

  •     Clifton – 5 sales, highest price of R57m for a house in Kloof Road
  •      Bantry Bay – 5 sales, highest price of R80m for an apartment (Seeff)
  •      Fresnaye – 4 sales, highest price of R55m for a house in De Wet Road (Seeff)
  •    Camps Bay (incl. Bakoven) – 8 sales, highest price of R33m for a house in Medburn Road
  •     Waterfront – 2 sales, highest price of R20m (Parergon) and R26.5m (No 3 Silo)
  •    Mouille Point – 3 sales, highest price of R41.5m for a unit in East West (joint Seeff sale)
  •     Llandudno – 3 sales, highest price of R57.5m
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