Kensington - Four Seasons of Property in One Day

Private Property South Africa
Ben Kelly

Perched on the hill just above the eastern suburbs of Johannesburg is one of the city’s best known suburbs, Kensington. With it great views of the city and classic houses the suburb has as much variety as anywhere in the city.

The issue that is the most perplexing about the suburb is the range of houses that you find in the suburb, with some properties selling for close to R2-million and others selling for under R400 000. There probably isn’t a single suburb in Johannesburg that boasts a split in property values as great as this, especially when you consider that almost all the properties in the suburb are of the freehold variety. In the last 12 months 50 properties were sold in the R0 to R400 000 ranges, 128 in the R400 000 – R 800 000 range, 67 in the R800 000 to R1.5-million zone and six from R1.5-million to R3-million.

This massive range in prices of properties for sale means that even with the average sale price sitting at R662 000 there are still many premium properties in the suburb. At the same time there are also a number of fixer uppers in the suburb and some properties in areas that might not be considered on the right side of the tracks (metaphorically speaking). The issue is that there are areas of the suburb that sit right above Bedfordview and some which adjoin suburbs that have significant urban blight and this makes those areas either better or worse when it comes to property values.

One things prospective buyers might want to consider is that as the suburb is nestled into the hill there are almost guaranteed to be lots of stairs in any house in Kensington. Stable owners in the suburb come mostly from the 36-64 age group with only a small percentage of 18-35 year olds in the suburb. One of the selling points of the suburb is Queen Street, which features a variety of cool antique shops and restaurants, almost making it the Melville of the eastern suburbs.

At the same time Eastgate is just a stone’s throw as well as the shops and restaurants along Van Buuren Road in Bedfordview.

From and education perspective there are English and Afrikaans schools in the area including Jeppe Boys, and then there is also a range of private schools reasonably close including St Benedict’s and Assumption Convent in Malvern.

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