It’s hard to believe that once upon a time Fourways was little more than a farm. Back in the day, the 600-odd acre farm was owned by the Eriksen family. Their home (built in the 1920s) was called Norscot Manor. The Manor is still around today and serves as a community recreation centre – boasting some of the most beautiful gardens in Johannesburg. It was only in the 1970s that the family began to sell off sections of the property to the Joburg City Council.Today, the residential and commercial hot spot that is Fourways is made up of eight suburbs and three rather exclusive estates. The suburbs are Magaliessig (aka Little Fourways), Norscot, Greater Fourways, Norscot Slopes, Lonehill and Beverley, Craigavon, and Broadacres. The estates are Cedar Lakes, Fourways Gardens, Dainfern, Dainfern Valley and Dainfern Ridge.
Fourways gets its name from the major intersection between the R511 and Witkoppen Road (which back in the farm days, was a neat, little four-way stop). According to Dieter Harck of Re/Max “One Hundred” in Fourways, the real estate market has been affected by the general slump in the global economy, but the greater Fourways area remains a sought-after place to be for both investors and home owners.
“A Fourways purchase is bound to be a smart one. In the current market buyers can expect net returns of around 5%. The Fourways of today is a suburb with absolutely everything you need,” maintains Harck.“It offers easy access to freeways, proximity to hospitals and emergency facilities and excellent schools, including Fourways High, Crawford College, Bryandale Primary; Bryandale Primary, Brescia House and Herron Bridge.”Fourways is also close to commercial hubs of Sandton and Randburg.
Terry and Candy Bremnar and their two children have owned a home in Fourways for the past five years. They believe they’ll definitely see a return on their property investment. “I made 100% profit on my first property in Fourways after three years, allowing me to buy a bigger home, which I’ve owned for the past two years,” says Terry.
For Terry, the area is modern and boasts infrastructure in terms of shopping centres, entertainment, hospitals and schools. “The roads are also big and arterial – and it’s a bonus being close to the national highway. I can head for Pretoria or the airport easily.” The Bremnars say they chose Fourways because of the standard of living it offers. “It’s quite chic with the likes of Montecasino and Cedar Square. I can also be in the countryside (Magaliesburg or Hartebeespoort Dam) within 20 minutes, so it has escape value. It’s very convenient. Everything is accessible. It’s an active community, yet if you want to withdraw, you can still find tranquility. Fourways is a really versatile place to live.” Terry has just one gripe about Fourways and that’s the traffic!
Stuart and Kate Turner have been renting in Magaliessig for over a year now. They agree that traffic in Fourways is the pits. “I also get despondent with the compact, on-top-of-each-other living. It feels quite dense at times,” says Stuart. Yet, the couple are looking to buy in the area. “We see Fourways as a good place to invest. It’s central yet still affordable and all the amenities are close by. My only worry is the ever-increasing traffic!”
A big plus about Fourways is the calibre of retailers. From the swanky Design Quarter to the World-famous Montecasino and other malls like the new, chic Cedar Square. “With all these amenities, it follows that Fourways is a favourite amongst a cross section of buyers in all age categories and diverse background, convenient to almost everywhere,” says Harck. The suburb is also showing signs of maturity, he says. “With tree-lined streets, parks and suburban shopping facilities, Fourways feels more like an established suburb.” According to property data specialists SAPTG, Fourways residents as a whole are categorized as elite. Research shows that these folk are well educated, well travelled and well off. This is the category of people who usually live in the most exclusive neighbourhoods and their suburbs and homes, whether large or small, are very well kept.