Should you buy Garden Route property?

The coastline, the grass, the rolling hills – the famous vistas of the Garden Route are internationally renowned for their beauty, stretching from Riversdale to Plettenburg Bay. Many of us know that property is a good focus for investment – in many ways: our time, our money, our family, our security. Given the beauty and wonder of the Garden Route, is this a place to consider buying property.

Knysna

The immediate answer is of course: any place is “worth” considering. Considering doesn’t mean your answer will be yes, only that you consider the reasons for and against, weigh them up, and come to a reasonable conclusion.

As the SA Tourism website highlights: “The Garden Route is a mix of modern golf courses, ancient forests, secluded artists’ communities, retirement estates, modern malls, craft centres, mountain hideaways and beach holidays.”

This is certainly not the place to make your home if you live and work in heavy urban centres. Of course with the increasing connectivity of the online world, more and more work can be done at home – without the need to spend petrol on travelling to and from work. If that’s the case, and you are able to stay connected, there’s no reason you can’t work almost anywhere.

But when considering the Garden Route, especially the interior areas, we can’t escape that the average price is in the five figures. Again, this need not be a hindrance: you can get home loans to try help us mitigate these expenses. Though this doesn’t undermine how expensive many of these places can be.

As Property24 highlights last year February:

“A plot at Pinnacle Point is also on the market for R350 000 and plots in Hartenbos priced at around R250 000. Pletttenberg Bay also offers sound value for money in the current economic climate, with three noteworthy good buying opportunities of a three bedroom home for R850 000 and vacant stands selling for R225 000 and R325 000 respectively. In Still Bay buyers are mostly from upcountry or Cape Town, with houses selling in the R1.2 million to R4 million price range.”

Dawn Schmoor, Licence Partner of Engel & Völkers Plettenberg Bay and resident agent in Knysna says:

“The economic downturn in 2008 affected property prices in the area but the market is recovering with great investment opportunities to be found by discerning buyers. Overseas interest has dropped due to financial constraints but is still a strong part of the market. Retirement villages and lifestyle estates are in demand in all price ranges and in this pristine environment a view is paramount”

Thus, like any spaces, it is a matter of the prices – but it’s also about how we respond to those prices. Loans, savings, investments can all go into to our responses to our purchasing property decisions. And, as we must stress, decisions can be “no”, too. It’s important to remember that looking doesn’t mean acquiring – and indeed can help us prepare for later, better buying.

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