SA loves Cape Town: More people heading to these Mother City suburbs

Cape Town’s southern suburbs are popular with semigrants. Picture: Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty

Cape Town’s southern suburbs are popular with semigrants. Picture: Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty

Published Dec 2, 2023


Semigration to Cape Town has been a growing trend over the past few years but, since 2021 specifically, there has been a surge of South Africans packing up their lives and moving to the home of Table Mountain.

With its natural beauty, quality of life, and good level of governance, the Mother City has been attracting semigrants from all over the country, but certain suburbs appear to have a magnetic pull that is a little bit stronger than others.

Since the revival of semigration in 2021, real estate agents say market activity in the southern suburbs has gained momentum and continued unabated; this steady rise in demand has led to a drop in the time properties are spending on the market as well as a declining gap between asking and selling price.

Claude McKirby, co-principal for Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty in the Southern Suburbs and False Bay says the agency has been inundated by enquiries for homes to buy and rent.

“People looking to buy will often rent first whilst they search for a home to purchase, and well-priced family homes are often snapped up as soon as they’re listed.”

Echoing this, Alexa Horne, managing director of Dogon Group Properties, says the southern suburbs have become increasingly popular with families over the past few years.

“The area offers beautiful, safe surroundings and large well-built homes. In addition to this there are plenty of good schools nearby as well as access to a myriad of leisure activities and facilities – all within a stone’s throw.”

Despite a recent slowdown in the market, property prices in the southern suburbs have remained resilient.

“While overall property transactions have seen a 40 percent decrease compared to the same period last year, southern suburbs real estate – especially in areas like Newlands, Rondebosch, and Constantia, has consistently displayed remarkable resilience.”

The demand for new, secure developments and estate living remains robust, particularly among those relocating from other regions of the country.

Property market trends in Cape Town’s southern suburbs

Three of the most popular areas in the southern suburbs due to their proximity of good schools and other top amenities are Newlands, Rondebosch, and Claremont where McKirby says demand is clearly evidenced by Propstats data.

In 2021, houses in Newlands were selling at an median price of R6.5 million, which was an average 11.1 percent lower than asking price after 176 days on the market. Some properties, however, were selling in under one month.

“By November this year, the average selling price had risen to R8.15m at 7.5 percent below asking price, with listing days decreased to 76. More properties are now selling within a week and many within two months though.”

Comparing 2023’s property market activity with 2021, McKirby says the average house price was R5.3m. This was 10.6 percent below asking and properties spent 124 days on the market. The current average selling price now, however, is R5.8m, which is 7.5 percent below asking price. The average listing time is just 51 days.

Claremont’s 2021 average sale price was R4.34m, 8.3 percent below the asking price and properties spent an average of 77 days on the market. The average selling price has increased to R5.8m, just 6.4 percent below asking and houses here now spend an average of 69 days on the market.

“Stock has become an issue, though and there are few houses available at the current average selling prices and almost none at the entry level.

Horne says the outlook in this sector of the market remains promising.

“As we approach the upcoming summer season, we anticipate increased activity, especially in the high-value property segment. The enduring appeal of Cape Town's southern suburbs continues to attract a diverse range of buyers, ensuring the region's status as a coveted real estate destination.”

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