The price of middle class homes varies quite dramatically, depending on the area in which they are located.
We decided to take a look at various so-called middle class suburbs around South Africa in order to see which areas were the most popular in terms of sales and which ones offered the best value for money. We appreciate that the term middle class is ambiguous and perceptions as to what is and what isn't middle class often depends on personal circumstances. With that in mind, we researched suburbs where the average income earned ranged between R24 000 and R37 000 per month and what we found was quite revealing. It's important to note that the statistics only record properties that have been registered at the deeds office and therefore pending sales are not reflected. The average price can be affected when only a few properties have been sold and for this reason we have taken a look at what was sold last year and based the average selling price on these figures.
Amanzimtoti, near Durban in KwaZulu-Natal for example, recorded the most sales last year when 111 freehold properties and 369 sectional title homes changed hands. In Pierre van Ryneveld in Tshwane (Pretoria) 97 freehold and 101 sectional title sales were recorded. On the other hand, Milnerton Ridge in Cape Town recorded 34 freehold sales while, according to the stats, only nine sectional title units were sold.
The average price of a freehold property in Amanzimtoti is roughly R1.2-million and a sectional title unit sells for around R638 000. The average price paid for a freehold home in Pierre van Ryneveld is approximately R1.4-million and R786 000 for a sectional title unit. Down in the Cape, buyers are paying an average of R1.6-million for the privilege of living in a freehold Milnerton Ridge home while those who are buying into sectional title schemes are paying an average of around R562 000.
While Pierre van Ryneveld may be the more expensive place to live, Amanzimtoti is where all the sales action is really taking place. Likewise, while many of us automatically assume that it's more expensive to buy a home in Cape Town, the stats indicate that we may well be wrong and that it is possible to find a home within our price range.
Of course statistical averages do tend to over simplify things a bit and there are always going to be homes that are more expensively priced in any of the aforementioned areas. However, statistics do allow us to see the general goings-on in the marketplace and as such give us some idea as to what sort of money is changing hands in which areas.