How much it costs to live in Joburg’s inner-city – and other popular suburbs

New data from research group Lightstone highlights four Johannesburg inner-city properties that have shows stable and strong price growth in a nationally tough market.

According to Lightstone, the suburbs offer properties within a wide band – from R650,000 to over R3 million – but have all shown positive price growth.

This includes La Rochelle, where prices range from R650,000 to R1.5 million, showing 6.4% price growth in 2018, and Bellvue East, where prices are lower than R650,000, with price growth over 5.4%.

The upper-end suburbs – Killarney and Houghton Estate – show lower positive price growth, but come off a much higher base, where property prices range from R1.5 million to well over R3 million, Lightstone said.

Sandra Gordon, a senior research analyst at Pam Golding Properties, highlighted the surprising growth in Bellvue in particular.

The analyst noted that between April 2018 to March 2019, a total of nine freehold properties were sold at an average price of R825,000 while 31 sectional title units were sold at an average price of R317,000.

“Bellevue East is an unusually stable market, with 62% of existing homeowners having owned their properties for more than 11 years. Most of these owners are mature and middle-aged, with 40% of existing owners falling into each of these age categories.

“A further 16% were retirees, while the balance is made up of first-time buyers,” she said.

In sharp contrast, Lightstone data shows that over the same period, 66% of buyers were young adults (35 years or younger) – many of whom were presumably purchasing their first home.

Bellevue East has a total of 857 homes which are fairly evenly distributed between freehold (48%) and sectional title (52%) units.

Inner city popularity

According to Pam Golding, the Johannesburg inner city is a very active market, particularly for first-time buyers.

Properties concluding notable sales including two bachelor units in Braamfontein sold for R485,000 and R590,000 respectively, while in Yeoville, a one-bedroom apartment was sold for R250,000 and a two-bedroom apartment sold for R410,000.

Of those buying in the Inner City, Pam Golding Properties notes that 80% are investors, while the remaining 20% are buying for permanent residence.

Areas such as Braamfontein, Bellevue, Bellevue East, Hillbrow, Joubert Park, Marshalltown and Yeoville remain sought-after as properties are accessibly priced with entry-level prices of R100,000 for bachelor apartments in Hillbrow, which is considered the most affordable of all the Inner City suburbs.

Rentals in Hillbrow range from R2,500 per month for bachelor units per month.


Other Joburg suburbs

Looking around the inner-city, prices vary depending on what buyers are looking for.

In Morningside, sectional title units priced below R1.5 million are snapped up as soon as they are listed, Pam Golding said, as are apartments priced from R600,000 in Ferndale Randburg.

In Ferndale, houses are priced in the mid-to-high-R1 million, while clusters are priced in the early-R2 million range

Parktown North, Parkwood, Parkview and Parkhurst, also known as ‘The Parks’ appeal to buyers looking for a secure lifestyle in a convenient location.

Prices in The Parks range between R3.5 million and R5 million.

In Killarney, properties most in demand, and priced around R2.2 million are selling well, as are cluster homes in Bryanston East and Bryanston West priced in the sub-R3 million price bracket.

Established suburbs including River Club, Parkmore, Petervale, Benmore Gardens, Rivonia, Craighall, Moodie Hill, Duxberry, Dunkeld, Orchards and Victoria offer value for money with a number of property types to choose from.

In these areas, sectional title properties are priced up to R2.5 million while cluster homes are priced between R3.5 million to R4.5 million.

At the top-end of the market, Forest Town is also experiencing demand for those looking for freehold homes in a desirable location. In this suburb, prices are around R3 million to R4 million.

Read: If your property is on the market in South Africa, look away now

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How much it costs to live in Joburg’s inner-city – and other popular suburbs