Billions of rands in new property developments and infrastructure has seen a huge appreciation in property values in the area.
Take a drive down William Nicol Drive in Johannesburg these days and the further north you go, the more cranes and construction work you will see, thanks to an explosion of property development in the metro’s ‘New North’.
“There are literally billions of rands going into new commercial and residential developments in this region, as well as major upgrades to the local roads and other infrastructure,” says Brian Falconer, co-owner of the local Chas Everitt International franchise, “and in the middle of it all lies the iconic Dainfern Golf Estate, where we have seen a huge appreciation in property values over the past year.
“We were recently mandated to market the two most expensive properties ever listed on the estate, at R28m and R30m, and one of these is already under offer. Meanwhile astute investors are also buying up older Dainfern homes at prices from R5m to around R8m and then quite readily spending another R15m to R20m to upgrade and modernise them, or in some cases to demolish them and build a completely new home.
“In other words, 25 years after the estate was established, Dainfern homes have once again become very ‘hot property’ – and we believe are likely to become even more sought-after as the pace of development in the New North speeds up.”
The most high-profile of all the new developments in this area, he notes, is of course the massive Steyn City lifestyle estate, where the developers have reportedly already spent around R7bn on infrastructure and facilities - including almost R1bn for a major upgrade of William Nicol – and where the value of stand and apartment sales has already topped R1,5bn.
“Then there’s the R2,5bn upgrade and expansion of the Fourways Mall to create a new 170 000sqm super-regional retail precinct at the intersection of Witkoppen Road Boulevard and William Nicol Drive, which is now the gateway to one of the fastest-growing areas in SA.”
Indeed, says Falconer, it is envisaged that the extended mall and its surrounding commercial developments will become the fully-fledged CBD of the New North – a city-size area roughly bounded by the N14 bypass to the north and the N1 bypass to the south, and by Malibongwe Drive to the west and Woodmead Drive to the east.
“Within the next 10 to 20 years this area will also be served by the next two stages of the Gautrain development, which will link Sandton to Honeydew/Cosmo City and then Ruimsig to Samrand. And it already has its own airport, Lanseria, where the owners have spent millions of rands over the past few years on upgrading the runways, roadways, passenger terminal and parking facilities.
“Kulula, Mango and FlySafair already operate multiple passenger flights daily from Lanseria to Cape Town, Durban and George, and in the neighbouring Lanseria Corporate Estate, large companies are now developing millions of rands’ worth of new warehouses, factories and offices, so we expect this to also become a major freight nexus over the next few years.”
Other recent commercial developments in the New North include the Dainfern Square shopping centre and, he says, so many new jobs have been created in the area that residential developers are also doing very well with a string of new apartment and cluster home developments, especially in Broadacres and Chartwell.
“And there is a wide choice of properties overall, from apartments at prices from around R550 000 to R1,5m, through cluster and free-standing homes at prices from around R2m to R6m, to estate homes at prices from around R2,5m to R8m in Cedar Lakes and Fourways Gardens, and luxury options in Dainfern and Steyn City.”
Falconer says Steyn City is steadily gaining traction, with the entry level for apartments in the development being around R1,7m and that for vacant stands around R3,2m, while the prices of cluster homes start at around about R4,3m.
“Meanwhile, the demand for homes on the Dainfern estate seems to rise weekly, thanks to its extremely convenient position at the heart of the New North, as well as the luxury lifestyle it offers while providing residents with the highest level of security.”
Built around a Gary Player-designed golf course and a stretch of the Jukskei River, the estate is divided into several villages and contains just over 1200 cluster and freehold homes, many of which boast lovely views. Onsite sports and leisure activities also include tennis, squash, marathon and football clubs and an active Nature Trust, as well as Toastmasters, birdwatching, whiskey-tasting and bridge clubs.
The country club on the golf course also incorporates a restaurant, bar, conference facilities, proshop, squash courts and a pool, while the fact that the estate has direct access to the adjoining Dainfern College means that children can safely walk or cycle to school.
“But it is the state-of-the-art security systems at Dainfern that remain the biggest attraction for many residents – and have for many years also made it the first choice of estate for foreign corporates seeking to lease homes for executives working on contract in Johannesburg.
“Consequently, it also has a substantial international reputation, and with the Chas Everitt affiliation to the Luxury Portfolio International© network, we are now able to fully capitalise on this by exposing our clients’ exceptional homes here to the most affluent and discerning real estate investors in the world.”
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