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Cape Town’s booming sectional title sector achieves the highest prices

Some of the highest prices paid in Cape Town over the last 18-months, ranging from R20 million to R72 million were for luxury sectional title apartments, especially on the Atlantic Seaboard.

Sales data shows a total of 156 sectional title properties sold above R10 million to the combined value of R2.8 billion over the period. Almost one third of those sales achieved prices ranging from R20 million to a highest price of R72 million for a Bantry Bay apartment sold by the Seeff Property Group.

R20 million-plus prices are no longer confined to the “big five” Atlantic Seaboard suburbs (Clifton, Camps Bay, Bantry Bay, Fresnaye and Waterfront), as Ross Levin, licensee for Seeff Atlantic Seaboard says top end unit prices have lifted over the last two years in areas such as Sea Point, Mouille Point and Green Point.

In the City Bowl too, more sectional title sales are achieving prices above R10 million as demand grows for the location, convenience, lifestyle and security, he says.

While the high value sectional title buyers were mostly local Capetonians, Propstats data shows that buyers from Johannesburg paid as much as R20 million in Green Point, R22.5 million in Sea Point, R23 million at Waterfront and R31 million in Clifton.

A KZN buyer paid R47 million in Clifton. Foreign buyers from the USA, Germany, UK, Finland, Switzerland and Austria also invested in R20 million-plus sectional title units in Cape Town.

Seeff concluded several of the highest value sectional title sales including in Mouille Point at R20 million in Mouille Sands, R21.7 million in Aquarius and R24 million in Biscay. Also, at the Waterfront, sales of R28.95 million and R37.5 million in Palgrave and R29 million and R30 million in Pembroke.

According to Kim Bailey and Finella Botes from Seeff’s Waterfront office, who concluded these sales, along with a sale of R55 million for a fully furnished unit in Pinmore at the Waterfront, say security, convenient proximity, lifestyle, and short term renting opportunities are some of the reasons why these units are so popular.

Sectional title property is often priced in terms of price per square metre. On this basis, some of the most expensive can be found at the Waterfront with average selling prices of R100,000 to R127,000 per square metre in complexes such as Pembroke, Palgrave, Pinmore, Penrith, Parergon and Parama. The highest demand though is in the R8 million and R12 million price range at the Waterfront and up to R8 million in Mouille Point.

Adrian Mauerberger and Bryan Ginsburg who brokered the record R72m sale in Bantry Bay says the highest demand for luxury sectional titles is now around R5 million to R8 million with a shortage of good stock available.

Based on sales, the most expensive complexes on the Atlantic Seaboard are in Bantry Bay and include the Aurum Presidential (R180,000/sqm), Conway Court (R122,000/sqm), Bantry Place (R100,000/sqm), Toscana (R80,000/sqm) and The Estate in Sea Point (R90,000/sqm).

The location combined with factors such as convenience, low maintenance, and the ability to work from anywhere continues to make Cape Town a preferential choice with local and foreign buyers, say the agents.

Another hugely popular area for sectional title is Century City where new development continues unabated. Helga Clemo, licensee for Seeff Century City says there is some saturation in terms of new developments which means that the resale market must price very competitively to compete for buyers.

Two-bedroomed units make up 60% of all sales and one-bedroomed units a further 23%. A two-bed unit averages at around R2.2 million, but prices varied by around 20% over or under depending on the unit, says Ms Clemo. Almost half of all the apartment sales in Century City were from three complexes, being Bougain Villas, Island Club and Villa Italia.

Pricing varies depending on the complex, proximity to Canal Walk, amenities and so on, and each complex is unique. New apartments in developments such as Axis and Bridgewater One are typically higher priced, but tend to be smaller with little to no amenities which means demand for older complexes remains strong.

The highest sectional title price achieved over the last 18-months is R9.8 million for the resale of a penthouse in the new Axis development. Three-bedroomed apartments and penthouses achieve the highest prices generally, especially in complexes such as Crystal Towers (R3.15 million), Knightsbridge (R3.9 million), The Island Club (R5.115 million) and a four-bedroomed unit in Quayside (R4.3 million).

According to Ms Clemo it is still a seller’s market for sectional title property in the Century City and there is always a shortage of stock, especially two-bedroomed units under R2 million and one-bedroomed units around R1.5 million.

Century City too has seen an influx of buyers from outside of Cape Town, such as Joburg and Durban, who are relocating to Cape Town, primarily due to work relocation. The centrality, safety and security offered by Century City is a big drawcard. The area is also a hub of activity, being a mixed-use suburb with residential, office, retail and recreational areas. As such Century City has always maintained a strong demand to stock ratio.

The Blouberg area is another high volume area when it comes to sectional title sales with beach apartments achieving good growth and excellent prices over the last 18-months according to Marlene Picksley, an agent with Seeff Blouberg.

The agent clinched several sales including two units in Portico for R6.5 million and R6.2 million respectively, three units in Aquarius at R2.875 million, R3.229 million and R3.425 million as well as a unit in La Mer for R2.2 million and another in Portico for R1.95 million.

Across almost all areas the demand has been boosted by an influx of second home and semigration buyers as well as investment by foreign buyers.