All three property sectors – residential, commercial and industrial – are currently experiencing a so-called buyers’ market in the Western Cape, David Maynier, Western Cape Finance and Economic Opportunities MEC said on Monday.
He was one of the guest speakers at the launch of a comprehensive report on what is happening in the property sector of the province by bringing together statistical information on the full spectrum of the property market in the province.
The report was commissioned by Wesgro, the official tourism, trade and investment promotion agency for Cape Town and the Western Cape. The first edition looked at the financial year 2018/19. The idea is that it would form a baseline for similar annual reports going forward.
The aim is to provide current and potential investors with a "one-stop" guide to what is happening in property sectors in key nodes in the Western Cape.
Data for the report was obtained from a variety of sources, including the Western Cape Government Provincial Treasury’s Municipal Economic Review and outlook (MERO) 2018, the SA Property Owners Association (SAPOA) quarterly assessment of various commercial nodes; Lightstone Property’s overview of residential markets and rental and sales values as they periodically appear on Property24.
"Property is the key driver of investment. Infrastructure is often what attracts investment into Cape Town and the Western Cape," said Maynier.
"Location really does count and the report offers an introduction of the opportunities to be found in sectors from industrial to residential sectors, taking the guesswork out decision making."
Western Cape Premier Alan Winde said at the launch of the report that business confidence is currently at a critically low point.
In his view, research like the Wesgro property report will help to create the business confidence needed again.
"Construction companies are facing tough times, and many are finding it hard to keep head above water. At the same time, there is such a massive demand from government to supply infrastructure," said Winde.
"Yet, investors make decisions of where they put their money and there are lots of places in the world where they can put their money. Therefore, this kind of report will help them to make those investment decisions."
Even tourists invest
He said even tourists are potential property investors.
That is why addressing safety as a factor is the first priority for Winde. Thereafter, to grow the economy in the province by building "an investment climate".
"We have to create the space that is business and investor friendly. If we do not, then we have some big trouble ahead," said Winde.
"If we do not get the mix right, then the negatives will start to outweigh the positives and people will start to invest elsewhere."