Bellevue East, located on the border of the upmarket suburbs of Observatory and Upper Houghton, emerged as one of the top performing suburbs in Johannesburg in terms of property price growth.
According to Lightstone data, property prices for homes priced below R650 000 in Bellevue East grew by 5.4% in 2018.
Top performing suburbs in terms of price growth (2018)
Sandra Gordon, Pam Golding Properties senior research analyst notes that during the past 12 months (April 2018 to March 2019), a total of nine freehold properties were sold at an average price of R825 000 while 31 sectional title units were sold at an average price of R317 000.
“Bellevue East is an unusually stable market, with 62% of existing homeowners having owned their properties for more than 11 years. Most of these owners are mature and middle-aged, with 40% of existing owners falling into each of these age categories. A further 16% were retirees, while the balance is made up of first-time buyers,” she says.
However, in sharp contrast, Lightstone data shows that during the past 12 months (between April 2018 and March 2019), 66% of buyers were young adults (35 years or younger), many of who were presumably purchasing their first home.
Bellevue East has a total of 857 homes which are fairly evenly distributed between freehold (48%) and sectional title (52%) units. “Activity in the sectional title market in Bellevue East remains relatively buoyant – with the strongest sales in the past decade recorded in 2017 and 2018.”
Brian Goso, Pam Golding Properties area specialist says Bellevue East is a sought-after suburb because it is less congested when compared to Yeoville and Hillbrow, which are the most densely populated suburbs in the area, and are home to the highest number of people per square metre.
In addition to property price growth recorded in 2018, the suburb offers affordable entry level prices in a desirable location
Goso explains that the advantage of Bellevue East being situated on the boundary with Observatory on one side, and Upper Houghton on the other, is that there are bus services including Rea Vaya and Metro that run through this part of the suburb, making it convenient to travel to the Johannesburg, Sandton and Rosebank CBDs and Bedfordview.
Sellers in the area are either relocating or retiring to the coast, or moving to retirement homes and villages. Others prefer to stay within the area and tend to buy in Kensington, which is bounded in the west by Troyeville, in the east by Bedfordview and the north by Bruma and Cyrildene, according to the Johannesburg North Quarterly Report April 2019.
Bellevue East offers freehold homes and spacious sectional title properties priced from R250 000 to R300 000 for one-bedroom apartments measuring 80sqm in size. It is also possible to buy a large one-bedroom apartment measuring 60sqm in some old buildings for under R250 000.
Freehold homes can be purchased at starting prices of around R600 000 and can range up to R1.1 million for two-bedroom, one-bathroom homes on small stands. Many of these old properties require some renovations to spruce them up.
Prices can reach up to R1.5 million for beautifully maintained homes located on the boundary of Observatory, a high-end suburb. For this price, one can expect to buy three-to five-bedroom homes on spacious grounds, adds Goso.