Property 24/10 - 545

25 March 2021 00:00

This week on Why South Africans are selling their homes; 2% SA property price growth forecast | What you can expect to pay in these 10 cities; and tenants' rights when landlords pass on special water levies and fixed electricity fees.

Why are South Africans selling their homes right now?
Selling your home is a long process and includes various moving parts. It is clear that each situation is different, and this important decision is one that every homeowner will need to make for themselves.

Establishing when it is the best time to sell your home is not an impossible task, but definitely, one that requires some careful consideration says Marcél du Toit, CEO of Leadhome. According to Du Toit, Leadhome analysis shows the reasons why people are selling right now appear to be on opposite ends of the spectrum as some look to downscale due to financial pressures, while those who are more financially secure are looking for their upgrade property.

"Leadhome has seen that the number of people requesting valuations on their homes due to their intentions to emigrate very obviously decreased during the hard lockdown between Q1 and Q2 in 2020, "a direct result of movement and border restrictions", he adds.

2% SA property price growth forecast | What you can expect to pay in these 10 cities
Property prices in South Africa are expected to increase by an average of 2.2% over the next 6 months, according to a panel of economists.

With South Africa’s prime lending rate currently at 7%, the lowest it has been in five decades, the panel of 25 economists put forward their analysis in the Finder’s repo rate forecast report - with a unanimous vote expecting the Monetary Council of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) to hold the rate at their next meeting at the end of March.

The coastal area of Cape Town is expected to see the highest property price increase at 4.50%, while the coastal cities of Gbergha (Formerly known as Port Elizabeth) and East London could see below-average price increase of 0.93% and 0.64% respectively. Soweto and Pietermaritzburg are the only other cities forecast to see below-average growth below.

My landlord wants me to pay a special water levy and fixed electricity fee, what are my rights?
Lease agreements specify how utilities should be dealt with between tenants and landlords to avoid any sticky situations. However, a Property24 reader is questioning special water levies and fixed electricity fees being passed on by their landlord.

"My Landlord has been issued a special water levy, to recoup historical undercharges on the water, due to leaks on the estate property that cannot be found. I have only been a tenant for 5 months. My lease states I am not liable for levies. My landlord says it is water usage and has added the cost to my account. Is this allowed?

In addition to this special levy, the reader wants to know if the landlord is within their right to charge an 'electricity fixed fee'?

"When questioned, I was told it was an amount all units pay in the estate for the street lighting, and so is an electricity charge for my account. My lease says I am liable for electricity consumed on the premises, premises is defined as my unit number. No mention of a fixed fee for street lighting, am I liable for this amount?"