Forest Town - Mixing Politics and Pleasure

Private Property South Africa
Ben Kelly

Forest Town is one of those suburbs that may well have stayed off the public’s radar apart from that President Jacob Zuma has his Johannesburg residence there.

Sitting between Oxford Road and the Johannesburg Zoo, Forest Town is a classic upper class Jo’burg suburb with more than its share of classy residences and leafy streets.

With Saxenwald on its one border and Westcliff just across Jan Smuts Avenue, Forest Town fits in perfectly with its surroundings. With 98% of the properties of the freehold variety and prices have averaged in the upper one million and lower two millions for the last few years. Over the last 12 months nine properties were sold between R800 000 and R1.5-million; 10 between R1.5-million and R3-million and six for more than R3-million.

This indicates that there is scope to pick up reasonably priced properties for sale in the suburb, but it is likely that these will be along busier thoroughfares.

However, the higher-priced properties keep the overall selling price in the suburb in the higher section of the market with the overall valuation of the suburb just outside the top 40 most expensive suburbs in Johannesburg.

As with many of the more expensive suburbs, Forest Town has a higher proportion of owners over 65 (more than 20%) and more than 40% of recent buyers are in the 35-50 age group and about 10% of the buyers above 65. This is a factor of those people that have the financial capability to afford to buy in this type of area.

One of the key advantages of Forest Town is that it is firmly located in the heart of old Johannesburg. Just under Parktown ridge it is a short drive from Rosebank and Killarney as well as Parkview, with its village atmosphere.

There are also schools like Parktown Boys and Girls, St Johns, Rodean and The Ridge Preparatory School and Parkview Junior School all of which have long standing reputations.

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