The continued acceleration in national house price inflation during the first half of 2016 has been somewhat surprising, given that the economic growth rate remains sluggish, both business and consumer confidence are at near-historic lows and interest rates have risen slowly but steadily.

This up-to-date, accurate index is unaffected by delays in reporting of registrations at the Deeds Office, allowing potential property buyers, investors and existing property owners to get all the information they need at a glance.

Highlights in the Winter 2016 issue of The Study are:

·      Undoubtedly one of the major trends in the property market this year is the robust outperformance of the Western Cape housing – as a healthy economic growth rate, coupled with perceptions of the high quality lifestyle offered by Cape Town and surrounding areas, attracts both wealth and skills to the province.

·      The influx of South Africans to the Western Cape may help to explain why the price of coastal properties, which normally underperform during periods of weak economic growth, remain unexpectedly resilience – outperforming growth in house prices in both holiday towns and non-coastal areas.

·      The continued outperformance of sectional title properties is attributable to the growing number of first-time homeowners and an increased focus on affordability. However, the move to metro areas, to reduce commuting times, and the growing number of affluent homeowners opting for luxury apartment living appear to be reinforcing this trend.

·      During periods of economic uncertainty and financial market volatility, individuals often become more cautious about their investments, often turning to more stable, “real” assets like bricks and mortar. Research shows that a well selected property can outperform inflation and generate a better return than equities.