Property buyer’s guide to Victoria West

Private Property South Africa
Private Property Reporter

The Northern Cape town of Victoria West is based in the heart of the tranquil Karoo, and is only a few hours away from various coastal hotspots, such as Cape Town, Mossel Bay, Knysna, East London and Port Elizabeth. It’s also home to a tightly packed collection of features and amenities, including several primary and secondary schools, the BJ Kempen Memorial Hospital, and the Apollo, a charming art deco movie theatre.

The appeal of Victoria West, from its facilities to its location, has translated into numerous property-related trends that were observed by Lightstone in 2018, and which will be of interest to property hunters planning a move to this town.

Ownership trends

The data compiled by Lightstone suggests that Victoria West is particularly popular amongst middle-aged property buyers, i.e. those aged 36 to 49. In fact, they made up the largest percentage (35%) of buyers in the period between February 2018 and January 2019.

It’s interesting to note that, in the same time period, mature citizens (those aged 50 to 64) and pensioners (aged 65 and over) made up the majority of stable home owners in Victoria West, while pensioners also made up 67% of property sellers. Only 4% of stable owners, and 24% of buyers, were aged between 18 and 35.

This data suggests that Victoria West is a comfortable living destination for people who see themselves as established enough, either professionally or in terms of family setup, to settle down permanently. This is made even more evident by the fact that so many local homeowners are either retirees or people approaching retirement.

Added to this, Lightstone also found that the majority of existing homeowners and recent sellers in Victoria West had lived there for 11 or more years. People who had lived in town for between 8 to 10 years came in second in terms of existing ownership, but only made up 8% of recent sellers between February 2018 and January 2019.

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Property sale trends

Victoria West’s residential market is made up exclusively of freehold properties, 1782 to be exact. According to Lightstone, 17 of these properties were sold over the past year, all of them in repeat sales. 12 were fully developed houses, while the remaining five were vacant plots of land.

All properties sold for less than R1 million, the most expensive being a house which fetched R900 000. Five houses sold for an average of R642 000, while the remaining six bought an average of R135 000. Meanwhile, four plots fetched an average of R156 000, and the last sold for R620 000.

Registration and property price trends

Developed properties also performed well in terms of price growth and first-time registrations in 2018. The median price for houses in Victoria West was R475 000, a significantly higher amount than the median price for vacant land, which came to R250 000. In addition, a total of 12 houses were registered (a significant increase from just three in 2017), while only six vacant land plots were registered.

Victoria West is a refreshingly affordable place for people to buy property. In a list showing the median property valuations of 834 towns around South Africa, Lightstone ranked Victoria West 447th, with a median valuation of R450 000. Add this to the town’s beautiful location, generous collection of amenities, and proximity to go-to beach destinations, and you might understand why it is so popular amongst adults over 35. From property buyers with families to those who have just retired, many people clearly see Victoria West as a great place to settle down.

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