Simon Bray tells the Expresso show which areas in South Africa are the most popular, according to the Private Property website.
Reporter: The contributing factors as to what make a specific area popular to live in, depend on many different things. Location plays a very big part in where we choose to call home. What do you say makes the most popular areas?
Simon Bray: Well, it's an interesting thing. Private Property has all of the property on the market, at any one time, on its website. You get to see a lot of these different properties and listings from across the country. When we talk about popularity though, we don't talk about it in terms of fashionable, or the hottest spot, or anything like that. The word popular for us is actually how many people are looking for property in that particular area at this time. We take all the listings, we divide it by all the views that we're seeing on those particular listings and we come up with this kind of popularity score for suburbs. It's quite interesting, because you see, areas pop up that you may not usually think about, but it's obviously where the market really has demand.
On your website, which areas have been the most popular?
Obviously, Gauteng is the bulk of the popularity, a lot of people are looking to move into Gauteng or move around within Gauteng, so some of the big names pop up there. But some interesting names in Western Cape and KZN as well. Soweto is our most popular suburb on the site and that's really an interesting story because you're seeing that affordable market really grow in South Africa. We're seeing the value in that end of the market really get excited.
What other areas in the Gauteng region have been deemed popular and why do you think it's been like that?
I think, sticking with this theme of affordability, the economic situation, the country is a little pressurised, people are looking for the next step in their housing journey, but they're looking very much for affordability. Areas like Northcliff which is a more traditional suburb in Johannesburg, Randburg, and Rosebank, Parktown, some of the older homes, they're very much in vogue at the moment. A lot of people in those types of areas looking for property at the moment.
In the Western Cape, which areas would you say have been very popular?
Well, that's also interesting, not names that you'd usually think of. You think of City Bowl or something like that and that gets a lot of attention. But the Cape flats actually is the most in-demand area in the Cape region and I think that's largely because there's just isn't enough stock there, not enough new development, new listings coming out to the market. It would be good to see the supply start to catch up with the demands that's out there. The traditional suburbs in the Cape obviously do very well. You get the leafy southern suburbs, its always very much in demand. Goodwood, Parow, those areas, still great affordability in that market, so people are really interested in them. If you're interested in those types of suburbs and it's that affordable market that you're looking at, you really have to get on the website, you have to sign up for email alerts, you need to make sure that you know about all the listings first because there is just that much demand happening in that sector.
When it's a popular area, wouldn't that increase the prices of the property?
You would think so. But I think, half the reason people are looking is because the prices are perhaps not as high as some of the other areas. But certainly over time, demand drives the prices up.
Not excluding KZN, which areas would you say are the most popular there?
KZN is fascinating actually. What's happened recently is a lot of businesses have moved out of the city centre and they've moved into the north. Nodes like Umhlanga and Ballito are really growing, particularly from a commercial property point of view. Durban's inner city is actually one of the more in demand residential areas now on the site. You're seeing a lot of those big buildings being converted into flat blocks and so that's driving a resurgence in the Durban property market and making that a very popular part of Durban.