When it comes to the top four luxury suburbs of the Atlantic Seaboard – Clifton, Camps Bay, Bantry Bay and Fresnaye – freehold houses remain a top choice with almost no price too high according to Lance Cohen and Karen Lurie, Seeff specialists in this sector of the market.
Joburg and Gauteng buyers in particular have dominated this year, snapping up 12 top end homes to the total value of almost R350 million in these suburbs alone and, paying some of the highest prices.
This includes the sale of a luxury home in Kloof Road, Clifton for R62m, a sale in Ave Alexandra in Fresnaye for R75m, R34m in Kloof Road in Bantry Bay and R47m, R29.5m and R28m in Fulham Road, Shanklin Crescent and Sedgemoor Road in Camps Bay.
Noteworthy too, is that despite a slower top end market, two of the top end suburbs now boast an average sales price above R20m according to Cohen. The Lightstone data shows that the average for Clifton for this year stands at a phenomenal R33.334m and for Bantry Bay at R21.946m, exclusive of the record sale of R290m.
The data shows that freehold house sales for these four suburbs already amount to just under R1.427bn coming from just 69 sales at an average price of R20.671m.
Just under one third of all sales have been above the R20m price band, with the R10m to R20m price range dominating the activity this year according to the agents. Homes under R20m are also achieving better prices on average, often within about 5%-7% of the asking price, says Lurie.
Cohen says that the top end of the market is now far more discerning, buyers are very particular and houses are taking longer to sell while offers are coming in at around 10%-20% below the asking prices.
Nonetheless, he continues, we have seen the average sales price of freehold houses increase almost across the board in these suburbs, reaching new heights above the R20m price mark.
Clifton is at the top of the price stakes not just for Cape Town, but for the whole country with an average sales price of R33.334m, R2.35m more than last year’s average of R30.98m for freehold houses. The highest price achieved so far, is R62 million in Kloof Road, paid by a Joburg buyer.
Fresnaye has been active with some 25 freehold house sales worth almost R370m at an average sales price of R14.799m, marginally up from last year’s average of R14.383m. The highest price paid is R75m in Ave Alexandra, also by a Joburg buyer.
The flat growth is largely due to fewer top end sales, say the agents.
While Bantry Bay has seen fewer freehold house sales with just 8 units sold worth just under R444m, the suburb now joins Clifton in the super sales club with an average freehold house price of R21.946m (exclusive of the record sale of R290m).
This is a phenomenal R4.877m or 28% higher than last year’s average of R17.069m, a clear reflection of the enormous demand and value that now attaches to the Atlantic Seaboard, says Cohen.
According to Pola and Nadine Jocum, Camps Bay continues to experience high demand for property with notable shortages still in some price bands. The biggest trend here is the significant increase in sales above the R20m price mark, some 19 sales worth almost R509m since the start of last year. This, has significantly boosted the average sales price.
The average freehold house price for the suburb is now also almost R3m higher than last year, standing at R15.536m, compared to R12.739m for the 2015 year. That represents year-on-year growth of almost R3m or some 22%.
The suburb has also been the most active with 33 freehold houses sold to the value of R512.707m, representing almost half of all the freehold houses sold across these four suburbs this year.
According to the Jocums, Camps Bay is also in the number one spot for R20m-plus sales with nine sales this year alone. Here too, Joburg buyers have paid the highest prices ranging to R47m, the highest price achieved in the suburb over the last two years.
Another noteworthy trend is that some 60% of all buyers this year have emanated from outside the metro, mostly from the greater Joburg area along with British and European buyers.
The most expensive houses on offer in the country though are in Clifton and Fresnaye, says Cohen. This includes two Stefan Antoni-designed architectural masterpieces, the four-storey Pentagon in Nettleton Road and a three-storey ultra-luxurious villa in Fresnaye, both around the R150m price mark.
The Fresnaye property boasts a rare plot of 1479sqm with a level garden, very sought-after given that most plots are well below 900sqm and often stepped. The magnificent four-bedroomed villa offers every luxury imaginable and fabulous sea views. Cohen says that even though the market is a little tighter this year, he is still seeing good interest at the top end of the market.
Samuel Seeff, chairman of the Seeff property group says that while the top R20m-plus sector of the market is slowing down on the back of a slower overall market countrywide, the Cape and Atlantic Seaboard in particular will continue leading this sector.
As we can see from the activity this year, it is not just local Capetonians or foreigners who see the area as offering excellent value, but buyers from Gauteng and Johannesburg have invested significantly in the area.