Woodstock, one of Cape Town’s very first suburbs, retained its popularity in 2016 according to. information extracted from CMA Info (it records all transfers finalised and those in progress at the Deeds Office), indicates that 75 sales of freehold property took place in the suburb during the calendar year 2016 and it shows that Woodstock as a real estate asset, continues to hold its value and perform at a high level.
Upper Woodstock achieved more sales than its neighbour lower down the slope of Devils Peak; 52 freehold properties were sold at the average price of R2 403 000 compared with R1 918 000 in 2015, an increase of 25%. This area is in high demand, especially the streets of Fairview, Kitchener, Roberts and Salisbury, as many of these Victorian semi-detached properties have retained their original character. Often buyers issue very specific instructions for a property in this particular sector. The highest Rand per m2, R21 875, in Upper Woodstock, was paid for a semi-detached property in one of these streets. The highest price achieved in the year was R5 050 000 for a property on 300m2 but most of the sales are properties on a plot size of less than 200m2.
The cheapest property, a 2 bedroom “fixer upper” just above Victoria Road, attracted 18 buyers to its first viewing and sold for R995 000. Buyers in Upper Woodstock tend to be young professional couples, mostly in their thirties, sometimes with a small family. Cash deals are frequent, occasionally with the assistance of one or both sets of parents. There are a few buyers who decide to sell up in the more affluent suburbs in the City Bowl and relocate to Upper Woodstock.
In 2016 there were 23 sales in Lower Woodstock at the average price R1 490 000 compared with
R970 000 in 2015, an increase of 54%. The highest price achieved in 2016 was R2 800 000 although most properties sell for less than R2 000 000. This area offers an easy stroll to places of interest such as the Old Biscuit Mill, trendy restaurants, nightspots, shops and showrooms. However, it is not as popular as Upper Woodstock and is sometimes only a second choice when properties above Victoria Road are seen as too expensive.
Although the process of urban renewal started in the 1990’s and the face of Lower Woodstock has changed, there are still many properties in a bad state of repair. However, a buyer purchasing a property for renovation will no doubt benefit in the long term as the area benefits from the superior property growth in the greater Cape Town area.
Current indications are that the demand for correctly priced property in Woodstock will continue in 2017. If sellers’ price expectations are unrealistic then overpriced properties will sit on the market and today’s well informed buyer will look elsewhere for a substitute property offering better value. There is no substitute for an up to date market assessment of a property, prepared by a qualified and experienced Estate Agent who has a track record in the area. Once sellers obtain a professionally prepared market assessment they are then able to make an informed decision on the marketing price of their property.
About the author
Laurence van Blerck is a Chartered Accountant and an Estate Agent with Knight Frank Property.