Milnerton: A Way Into the Market

Private Property South Africa
Angelique Arde

It’s unfortunate that Milnerton residents are a bit scathing of “Millatin” or “Millies” as they call it, because their suburb has lots going for it ... even if it was once home to murderer Dina Rodrigues and fraudster Tony Yengeni. South Africa’s beloved “Arch” (former Archbishop of Cape Town), Nobel Peace Prize-winning Desmond Tutu, also lives there, which more than makes up for the most notorious neighbours.

The question is, who wouldn’t want to live in Milnerton? It’s only 10 kilometres from the city; it’s right near the beach; boasts some of the best views of Table Mountain; has a challenging 18-hole seaside golf course; and is close to a couple of top schools, excellent private hospitals and some of the best shopping spots a yummy mummy could ask for.

Last but not least, Milnerton has a wide variety of good value-for-money properties across all segments of the market, especially at entry level.

No one’s claiming it’s the most charming place in the fairest Cape, but what’s not to love about Milnerton?

Yes, the commute to town in peak-hour traffic is, well, a commute. But it’s all of 10kms, for goodness sake. And it’s true, Caltex Oil Refinery is in your backyard, but you’re upwind of it, so the smells (and any nasty emissions) will only get to you when the north-wester blows, which isn’t all that often.

On a bright and sunny day, when the south-easter is up, there’s no better place to be than down on one of Milnerton’s clean and family-friendly beaches. A Beach in Milnerton, Cape Town

A young Milnerton resident who asked not to be named regularly walks her two energetic Jack Russells on the beach, where people and pets mingle nicely.

“Being so close to the beach and the lifestyle here are, for me, draw cards in Milnerton. That I can walk the dogs off-lead somewhere safe is a big plus.”

She bought her two-bedroom duplex in a gated complex in Royal Ascot in 2004. She paid R420 000 for the 80 square-metre property, which she bought off plan. Today, five years later, it’s worth about R900 000.“I first bought out this way because at the time it made sense to build and there was no land in the city of Cape Town; Milnerton was affordable for someone going into the market. After selling my house I decided to buy in a security complex and Royal Ascot offered value for money.”

Milnerton Ridge resident Amy Drew bought her three-bedroom house in 2003 because it was affordable and she too felt that the suburb offered good value for money.

“My husband and I had done some house-sitting in the area, and we really enjoyed it. It was quiet, family oriented, close to the beach and the vlei – which has great bird life – and it wasn’t far from the city, where we work.”

The Drews paid R450 000 for their 100m2 home because they spotted the potential in both the property and the suburb. They reckon they could get R1.5m for their house, which has undergone substantial improvements.

Like the Drew’s house, the residential market in Milnerton has undergone big changes in recent years. Successful developments like Royal Ascot have played a part in this, creating new stock and breathing new life into the whole of the suburb.

A sunny day at the beach in MilnertonWith the property market in the state that it’s in, there hasn’t been much activity in Milnerton over the past three months. According to property analysts Lightstone, there has been only one recorded sale in Milnerton Ridge over the past three months: a freehold property that went for R1.1m. Over the past year, however, there were 25 sales amounting to R29.7m. The average sale price in Milnerton Ridge over the past year was R1.1m.

The average price of a freehold property in Milnerton Ridge in 2004 was R770 804. In 2008 it was R1 402 396 – almost double. The average price for a sectional title property in 2004 was R250 083. Last year it was R529 444 – more than double.

Given economic conditions, it’s unsurprising that in 2004 there were 63 sales – 21 sectional title schemes and 42 freehold – compared with 33 sales last year: 9 sectional title and 24 freehold. Milnerton Ridge has more freehold properties than sectional title. About 68 percent of market stock is freehold.

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