Rhys Dyer, CEO of ooba, South Africa's largest mortgage originator, says that there is a lot of conflicting advice out there at the moment because the market has cooled.
R 20 million for a three bedroom apartment in Cape Town's V&A waterfront may seem like a ridiculous sum to pay by South African standards, but it compares favorably with Sydney and remains significantly cheaper than upmarket apartments in other international playgrounds.
"With house prices growth expected to be 12% in 2006 and probably less in 2007, capital growth may not cover the interest costs of a standard 108% mortgage for the first few years", says Saul Geffen, Managing Director of MortgageSA. "That shouldn't scare you off, but it does mean you have to buy well," Geffen said.
For most of us, buying our home is the biggest investment we've ever made - yet too many of us go into the process uninformed, without a real sense of the risks (and hidden costs) involved. But, says MortgageSA, there's really no need to panic if you follow a few basic rules of thumb.
South Africa's largest property listings website has reported a surge in viewings of traditional holiday hot spots as more buyers shortlist homes through online searches ahead of arriving on vacation to see them.
"There is a global trend of people buying near their workplaces, and South Africa is no exception", says Saul Geffen, Chief Executive of MortgageSA, South Africa's leading bond originator that places one in five South Africans in their homes.
Linda Rall, Provincial Sales Manager at ooba, South Africa's leading bond originator that places one in five South Africans in their homes, says looking at the recent trends in house price data from the ABSA House Price Index, it is likely that the average price of a home in SA will top R1m in 2008.
"Rather invest in simple, streamlined furniture," she says. "Try to have pieces that have legs and are not boxy. Not only will you have created space but also the functionality of the room improves as well."
A hot model is South Africa's idea of the perfect neighbour according to new research by SA's largest online search portal www.propertygenie.co.za that lists over 125 000 properties nationwide.
Security features of a house are one of the most important aspects South African consumers take into consideration when choosing a home. According to a recent PropertyGenie poll, hosted on behalf of ooba - South Africa's leading bond originator - most home buyers reported burglar bars and a burglar alarm as the most important home security features they would look for in a new home.
According to a new poll by South Africa's leading property listings website, nearly a third of home hunters decide that a property is right for them before they even enter the house - and a kitchen is overwhelmingly the most important room when it comes to the buying decision.
It came as some relief to homeowners when the prime interest rate was cut by 50 basis points to just 8.5% last month. Although this provides a welcome reduction in the monthly costs of repaying a mortgage, ooba, the South African home loan experts, say it would be wise for people to keep their repayment levels unchanged.