Inner-city residential property market enjoys increased activity

Posted On Thursday, 11 February 2010 02:00 Published by
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Cape Town inner-city residential property specialists Life Residential is celebrating the end of one of the property market’s most difficult years having achieved a sharp increase in sales from its property portfolio

The firm, based in the heart of the Cape Town city centre, enjoyed marked success in the last quarter of 2009 with a record 25 property sales concluded between October and December. The majority of sales were high-end properties in the trendy inner city area that has become popular among young professionals and foreign investors.

Richard Boxford, Life Residential sales director, says the sharp increase in sales can be attributable to a number of factors. “The property market is finally recovering after one of its most challenging periods in recent memory. Banks are lending again, and many investors have jumped in to scoop up prime property at good prices as the market bottoms out.”
Seedstone, a property development and investment firm, have the sole mandate and have partnered with Life Residential to sell 46 units in the highly sought-after Icon building on the Foreshore. Boxford explains, “Although the property market was generally down for most of last year, the sheer desirability of these fully furnished units, combined with highly competitive pricing, have boosted sales considerably, with us selling 21 of the 46 units within three months. Most of the sales were to local buyers who have weathered the financial storm and are ready to invest in property again.”

Steven Lukey, chief operating officer of Seedstone, added: “We took over the portfolio of 46 units from an Irish consortium that was finding it hard to achieve the desired returns in a very challenging environment.  After a careful market analysis and pricing strategy through our partnership with Life Residential, our clients have enjoyed a welcome change in fortune after a tough year.”

According to Boxford, another principle reason for the spike in sales in the last quarter of last year is the 2010 FIFA World Cup. “As the reality of the World Cup started to sink in toward the end of last year, particularly in the lead up to the draw in December, foreign visitors realised that they have to move fast or lose out on their dream accommodation for the tournament. Many of the clients we’ve seen over the past few months have been Northern European, and most have visited Cape Town before or would like to establish a base in Cape Town.”

Life Residential’s small team of specialists focus exclusively on Cape Town’s central business district, where they have enjoyed significant market share in a highly competitive environment since the agency was founded in 2005. The company is centrally located and within walking distance of most of the properties in its portfolio, providing staff with the opportunity to personally take clients to view properties.
Boxford is upbeat about the year ahead. “A recent upswing in average sales prices point to 2010 being a landmark year for the revitalised Cape Town property market. With the world’s attention firmly fixed on South Africa ahead of the World Cup, we expect buoyant trade in local property in the inner city, and are glad to be at the centre of all the excitement,” he concludes.

Publisher: eProp
Source: Phoenix

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