Welkom is the Free State’s second biggest city with a well-developed infrastructure – but it is also an ideal location for retirees looking for affordable homes and a peaceful lifestyle.
That’s the word from Brendon Calldo, principal of the local RealNet franchise, who says: “Welkom offers incredible value for retirees wishing to bring down their living costs and enjoy a safe, friendly and less frantic environment.
“It is possible to sell one’s large home in Johannesburg, Pretoria or Bloemfontein and purchase a retirement house or townhouse here with plenty of money to spare. Finding a house for less than R1m is difficult in most other cities around the country, but we still have such properties in abundance, even though prices are rising now.”
He says the starting price for two-bedroom homes in Welkom is around R410 000, that for three-bedroom homes around R580 000, and that for four-bedroom homes about R820 000.
“In suburbs such as Flamingo Park and Riebeeckstad, we currently have several good quality three-bedroom, two-bathroom homes listed for between R600 000 and R750 000, while at the top end of the market, we have four bedroom executive homes in St Helena, Dagbreek and Jim Fouche Park listed for between R2,1m and R2,9m.”
For those who would prefer an apartment or townhouse, three-bedroom options are available at prices from around R500 000, while one and two-bedroom options, which are also attractive to buy-to-let investors, start at around R200 000.
And Welkom also has many houses at prices from as little as R250 000 which, with an upgrade, can become excellent investments
What also helps to make the city a good option for retirees in the fact that it has two private hospitals, Mediclinic Welkom and St Helena Hospital, and is only 90 minutes from the Universitas academic hospital in Bloemfontein. It also has several retirement villages with frailcare facilities.
In addition, the city offers top-class shopping and entertainment at the Goldfields Mall and Welkom Square shopping centres and the Goldfields Casino. It also has many lovely parks, dams and nature reserves, including two bird sanctuaries; a well-established golf club, a Virgin Active gym and a small airport offering daily flights to Johannesburg.
Meanwhile, for the more adventurous early retiree or entrepreneur looking for a good local business opportunity, RealNet is currently marketing a 673ha nature reserve and game farm for R11,35m. (See photos)
“Located between Welkom and Kroonstad, this is registered with the Tourism Grading Council as a three-star private game reserve and is well-known for its camping facilities and as a wedding venue with its own chapel,” says Calldo.