Spike in people wanting to leave South Africa – and where they are going

The number of South Africans looking to emigrate is at its highest since the 2008 recession. This is according to FNB property specialist John Loos who said that approximately 7.2% of total home sellers in South Africa were selling up with plans to emigrate, with this number having steadily increased from 2% in 2013.

At the start of 2014 about 2% of respondents were selling to emigrate. This rose to almost 5% in 2016 and peaked at 7.3% between July and September 2017, he said.

While the home sellers were not asked for specific reasons as to why they were choosing to emigrate, Loos said it was mostly likely due to the deteriorating growth in the economy.

Following Loos’ comments, TimesLive spoke to a number of emigration consultants as to why exactly South Africans were choosing to leave the country.

Marlene Prentice, principal owner of Migration Network Australia, said since January she had noticed a substantial increase in inquiries from “potential applicants aged 21 to 29” about moving to Australia.

She said that from August to November 2017, there had been a 38% increase about relocating compared with the same months in 2016. However this does not include the queries which did not qualify for emigration which she said had also increased.

Douglas van der Merwe of LCR Capital said that emigration applications to the US had also risen in 2017 due to a push to acquire visas by 8 December – when new qualification requirements will be announced.

Van der Merwe said “crime” and the “political situation” were factors in people wanting to leave and inquiries outweighed the number of people who qualified to go.

Read: More South Africans are selling their home to leave the country

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Spike in people wanting to leave South Africa – and where they are going