Rosettenville Suburb Report

Private Property South Africa
Ben Kelly

Down in the south of Johannesburg there are a number of suburbs that have a life of their own. Over the years they have established a reputation for being the place that produces residents that are slightly tougher than those that you would find in the, overly pampered, northern suburbs.

Rosettenville, with its strong working class and Portuguese and Lebanese communities is one of these suburbs.

Rosettenville, with its working class roots, sits in the centre of the classical south of Johannesburg, with house prices that have remained affordable over the years, even after the property boom of the mid 2000s.

During the boom years prices escalated from and average price (for freehold properties) of R218 000 in 2004 to a peak of R618 000 in 2008, with some drop-off after that to an average price of R518 000 last year. Given that this is still more than a doubling of prices over the 2004 – 2010 period, in line with most other suburbs in Johannesburg, the slight drop in the average selling price should be seen as the suburb finding its natural level after a slightly higher than usual exposure to the property boom.

What the suburb has seen is a sharp drop-off in the number of transactions per year, from a peak of 241 in 2006 to a much more reasonable 82 last year. This reduction in the number of sales is reflective of the market as a whole, mostly as a result of the slowing property market and the impact of the National Credit Act.

Market stock in Rosettenville is a mix of sectional title and freehold properties with freehold making up three quarters of the stock and sectional title making up the rest.

From a demographic point of view the suburb is dominated by the 36 to 64 year old categoies with 36-49-year olds making up almost 60% of recent buyers. Older residents, as one would expect, make up a larger percentage of recent sellers with almost one quarter of recent sellers falling into the 64-year old and above category. Younger owners 18-34-year olds make up a relatively small part of the overall mix with only 11% of stable owners forming part of this group.

As one would expect in a suburb with strong working class roots, properties are not overly large, but for those starting out on the property ladder there is still real value to be had. There are some main streets that bisect the suburb that are busy and may, at first glance, appear slightly dingy but away from these the properties have been reasonably well looked after.

What Rosettenville does provide, however, is a convenient location with easy access to highways, shopping facilities and the CBD – for those that work there.

From a shopping perspective The Glen, just off Camaro Road and the plethora of other shopping centres that have sprung up in the vicinity are just a few minutes away and Steeldale Pick n Pay Hypermarket is within easy reach.

Although some of the government high schools in the area, most notably Forest High School, have received some unwanted negative publicity in recent years there are a number of other schools in the area including Glenvista High School. There are also private schools in the form of Marist Brothers’ Linmeyer and St Martins within easy reach.

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