South Africa’s primary wine growing regions are drawing buyers prepared to pay a premium.
The Cape vineyard neighbourhoods of Durbanville, Constantia, Stellenbosch, Franschhoek, Paarl and Somerset West are in great demand among buyers who are willing to pay premium amounts for property here. The property market in these areas is thriving, even during the current tough economic times.
Property buyers in the vineyards are spoilt for choice. Those with a bigger budget can invest in a wine farm or boutique lifestyle estate. For others, there are vineyard estates like Fransche Hoek in the Paarl/Franschhoek Valley. Those looking for a house only can find an ideal family home in Durbanville and Constantia. These neighbourhoods also cater to those looking for a holiday home, and provide spectacular scenery for a relaxing getaway. Whatever the choice, it is the vineyard lifestyle that buyers are after, says Seeff.
Most areas are less than 1 hour from the city centre, which means that more commuters are buying property in Somerset West, Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Paarl, according to Pierre Germishuys, Seeff’s managing director for the winelands. Not only are these neighbourhoods conveniently located, but they also boast some of top educational institutes in the country, for both school level and tertiary level education.
Fine dining in the vineyards
Wine farms rank as top leisure pursuits for local residents as much as for tourists. The opportunity to enjoy vineyard walks, a meal at one of their top restaurants, wine tasting, the weekend markets and much more are, says Seeff, part of the attraction of these neighbourhoods. The opportunity to enjoy vineyard walks, a meal at one of their top restaurants, wine tasting, the weekend markets and much more are, says Seeff, part of the attraction of these neighbourhoods. James Lewis, Principal for Seeff Southern Suburbs, Hout Bay and Llandudno says the vineyard vibe of the suburb is what buyers are looking for, and is one of the main reasons that property sell so quickly here.
In addition to the wine farms, these neighbourhoods are also home to six of the Top 10 restaurants in the country as ranked by the Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards. Two of these, La Colombe at Silvermist Wine Estate and the Green House at The Cellars-Hohenhort Hotel are in Constantia.
What do the numbers say?
Constantia - Lightstone data shows that the median price for freehold property in Constantia stands at around R10m, up by 188% in the ten years since 2005 when it was R3.475m and 54% in the five-year period since 2010 when it was around R6.5m.
Durbanville - In 2005, the median freehold house price was around R1m. By 2010, is was 60% more at around R1.6m and by 2015, it had risen by 160% to almost R2.6m. As can be gleaned from the prices, the area still remains very well-priced for a vineyard neighbourhood, he says.
Stellenbosch - In 2005, the median price of freehold property was around R1m. By 2010, it had risen to R1.9m, 90% more in just five years. It now stands at around R2.8m, 180% up over the last ten years.
Franschhoek - As Franschhoek becomes more family-friendly, property values have risen by about R100.000 each year over the past three years. In 2005, the median value of freehold property in the town was just R638.000. By 2015, it had more than doubled to R1.3m and it now stands at just over R1.4m. Luxury estate homes now sell for a median price of about R4.2m.
Somerset West - At the other end, Somerset West property meanwhile has seen its values grow from a median value of R1.2m in 2005, by 42% to R1.7m in 2010 and by 92% to R2.3m in 2015. According to Loretta Diab, manager for Seeff Somerset West, there have been several sales above the R5m to R10-plus price band. Most of these were in the exclusive estates such as Bel’Aire, Boskloof, Dennegeur and Erinvale where properties have sold for as much as R14.5m to a very notable R22m.