More South Africans are semigrating right now – here’s where they are moving to

Home services company reports an increase in semigration enquiries across South Africa as more employees aim to work from home permanently or adopt a hybrid model, namely being able to blend working from different locations: home, remotely, and in the office.

“A growing number of South Africans are semigrating within the country – either targeting better work opportunities or a change in lifestyle,” said Graeme Steen,’s chief operating officer. He noted that the semigration shift is not limited to coastal areas, but is also being seen in several inland suburbs.

Popular coastal areas for semigration include:

  • Cape Town CBD;
  • Hermanus;
  • Mosselbay;
  • Plettenberg Bay;
  • Gaansbaai;
  • Ballito.

Popular inland areas for semigration include coastal areas include:

  • Nelspruit;
  • Waterfall;
  • Fourways.

A poll of 4,684 BusinessTech readers in January found that almost a third of people (1,494) were considering semigration post-Covid.

A further 11% of respondents (493) said that they already had plans in place, while 8% of people (376) said that they have already made the move.

The trend towards moving from metropolitan areas to smaller and larger towns or Cape Town – South Africa’s second-largest metro – can mostly be attributed to a move away from crime-and-grime and towards a slower, safer, quality lifestyle in the small to large towns, said analytics company Lightstone.

Semigrants are also attracted to the fact that municipalities are typically better to run in the Western Cape than in other parts of the country.

“Many of the semigrants have families, and are choosing to relocate their homes to ensure a better quality of life for their children and often greater security. Good schools and an outdoor lifestyle are thus key considerations when relocating,” Dr Andrew Golding, the chief executive of the Pam Golding Property Group told the Daily Maverick.

Semigrators are usually motivated by “a better quality of life including less congestion, lower crime levels and a healthy outdoor lifestyle that rural living offers, Golding said.

This was echoed by Ross Levin, licensee for Seeff Atlantic Seaboard and City Bowl, who said that semigration enquiries have rapidly increased since late 2020.  He added that the Western Cape has a specific appeal because of the perceived quality of governance, service delivery, safety and schools.

“Cape Town continues to be the best run metro in the country which is an important drawcard. You can add to that the quality of life and beautiful coastal setting which is complemented by excellent service delivery, infrastructure and amenities.

“Many people come here and set up their own businesses while those who can, will commute to Joburg,” he said. The Cape is also renowned for its excellent schools and there is a wide choice of tertiary educational institutions including UCT and Stellenbosch, both highly ranked universities.”

Read: People are moving to this ‘European grade’ part of South Africa to avoid the country’s major problems

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More South Africans are semigrating right now – here’s where they are moving to