South Africans are moving to this ‘desert’ semigration hotspot – here’s what you get

 ·20 Nov 2022

The Karoo is seeing a semigration trend, with many moving to or investing in smaller towns in the area, says Ian Badenhorst, the managing director for Seeff Country and Karoo.

According to Badenhorst, the landscape and safe laid-back lifestyle is attracting buyers of all ages.

“Buyers are not just of older persons, but even younger families looking for a more wholesome family environment.”

Art and antique stores, alongside boutiques, coffee shops, restaurants, guest houses and more, are now seeing a boom – as small business thrives.

Smaller towns do not only bring with them more affordable property prices, but the cost of living can be cheaper with lower rates and taxes, added Badenhorst. You are also able to find local food, often free range and fresh produce.

A licensee for Seeff Oudtshoorn, Jan Verlinde, said that there is indeed a strong demand from semigrating buyers looking to relocate into the Klein Karoo.

“About 20% to 25% of our Seeff’s buyers over the last two years have been from large cities – mostly Cape Town and Johannesburg.”

While historical sandstone buildings and ostriches entice tourists to visit, semigration is enticing for city folk due to the carefree, peaceful living that Oudtshoorn offers.

He said large family homes are being bought most often, and occasionally smallholdings, although smallholding stock is limited.

Seeff has sold several properties to semigration buyers ranging from R2 million to R3 million, which is high-end for Oudtshoorn.

Areas like Oudsthoorn, according to Seeff, are very safe and conducive to having children playing in the street without parents worrying. There are also several schools in the area that are of a high standard.

Further advantages include the possibility of working remotely or working in town by not sitting in traffic all day.

According to Seeff, properties in Oudtshoorn are comparatively low-priced compared to larger towns and cities. Verlinde said: “Why to settle for a two-bedroomed apartment in a city when, for the same price, you can have a 3-bedroomed home with a swimming pool in Oudtshoorn?”

Modern properties in the area range from R1.6 million to R2.5 million for large three-bedroom homes, while smaller homes are even more affordable.

Other areas that are becoming hotspots include:

  • Ladismith – properties from R800,000 for a small house to around R2.4 million for a large home. Farms range between R2.7 million to R24 million for 200 hectares.
  • Graaff-Reinet – architectural houses on the market are priced from R1.2 million to R2.2 million on average. Top-end houses range just above R5 million, and farms, up to R25 million but no less than R5 million.
  • Middelburg – prices range from R500,000 to around R2.2 million for a large eleven-bedroomed guest house, and farms from R3 million to R15.75 million for a Karoo farm with a guest house.
  • Calvinia – property prices range from R500,000, and farms from R1.5 million to R20 million, depending on the extent and location of the farm.

3 Bedroom Gated Estate For Sale in Oudtshoorn North – R2,100,000

226Ha Farm For Sale in Oudtshoorn Rural – R39,500,000


Read: Development boom in the Western Cape – while Gauteng declines

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