Reporter: Located between Pretoria and Midrand, we find Centurion. When we think about Centurion, what kind of person will I find there and is it a really great neighbourhood?
Simon Bray: Centurion is actually a fascinating story for me because when you think of the Gauteng property market, you really think of Johannesburg and some of the key areas in Johannesburg, and then you think of Pretoria. But Centurion is really emerging between the two as Gauteng's third city. So much growth, so much development happening there. To your question about who lives there, a lot of first time buyers and lots of families moving into the area, and it just offers so much. You've got great outdoor living opportunities, you're really close to work, whether you work in Johannesburg or in Pretoria because you're along that main access of the highway there. It makes a lot of sense. The Gautrain plugs into Centurion as well. From a commute time and from a lifestyle perspective, it makes a lot of sense to live in Centurion.
What does the property market look like in Centurion?
As I said, it's a great story in Centurion. A lot of new developments and I think that's great as well. When someone is looking for a home, you get the choice of buying an established house, one that's been there for say 20, 30 years and perhaps you've got problems with the roof, perhaps you'll have problems with the plumbing. But what's really great about buying into new developments is you know exactly what you're getting. You've often gotten to choose the finishes, choose the paint color, you've seen the house being erected so you know what the build and construction finishes are like. Buying in a new development has a lot of perks and Centurion has been driven a lot by that. New complexes coming up, estates coming up, but still very affordable. I think that's what's driving the market in Centurion is just how easy it is to get into the market as a first time buyer, when you're looking for that move from your kind of bachelor days to your first family pad. Centurion is a great market to look at.
When we talk about commuting because, let's be honest, there's a lot of that happening between Johannesburg and Pretoria, is Centurion the perfect middleway?
Johannesburg is more and more about your commute time. Lots of people make the joke about traffic and sitting in traffic. But the reality is you can lose two or three hours of your day going between your business and home, so you don't really want to get stuck in that. Centurion offers a lot of options when it comes to commuting. If you work in Pretoria or Johannesburg, you're pretty close to both of them. You're right in the middle. That northern side of Jo'burg, between Jo'burg and Pretoria is just booming. With that, new investment in roads are coming. The Gautrain also makes a stop here, so that's really convenient for people that may be near the station. Getting to the airport is a dream. It really is a good option when you look into trying to unplug from that traffic hassle.
Is it better to rent or buy?
This is a good question. Because if you just look at the statistics in Centurion, the property rentals are not that expensive so you can get a great home in a complex - you've got safety, security, you've got all that great access I was talking about, and you're paying R15,000 a month, which is excellent. But I would buy. I think the market is going to grow a lot. It's in a boom phase now which means there are a lot of properties on the market, there's a great amount of supply in Centurion. But what's going to happen is as soon as that supply starts to slow, the prices are going to leap up. You could buy a great two, three-bedroom house in Centurion for around about R2million - that's what I would be doing.
What is your Simon Bray tip of the day?
Centurion is an excellent growth market, probably one of the biggest growth markets in South Africa. If you can get involved in the market, you should do it right now.