The disruption of the past year has dramatically shifted mindsets with many prioritising lifestyle when making big decisions. This has filtered through to the property market with significant trends emerging that indicate KwaZulu-Natal’s coastal, nature-based estates are prime locations for South African investors.
Phil Barker, of Renishaw Property Developments on the KZN South Coast, said the relaxing of lockdown regulations had resulted in a spike in interest for property along the coast: “There has definitely been a shift in mindset, particularly among those who are looking at a retirement investment. Many people who’ve been on the fence about this decision were prompted, during lockdown, to take the leap and move to the coast. This is a welcome trend and we expect to see more of it.”
Here are some of the trends noted in coastal properties:
1. Market remains buoyant
Jeff Evans of Tyson Property Group, said the market ‘remains buoyant’ following the lockdown spike, with interest in the KZN South Coast coming from everywhere: “Whether upsizing or downsizing, people are looking at property on the coast with the most popular price bracket is the R1.5 million mark and below.”
2. Nature-based living
According to Phil Barker, there’s a trend of moving away from lock-up-and-go apartment living, with buyers looking for more open space. Properties that are close to nature are high in demand, so residents can enjoy the fresh air and views. Easy access to the ocean, as well as forests and reserves for nature walks are being prioritised.
3. More space
“With the baby-boomer generation reaching retirement age, there continues to be a demand for secure mature lifestyle estates,” said Barker, who added that, rather than retiring completely, the generation is choosing to consult in their field of expertise or start up new ventures.
“This means, where boomers once wanted to downsize, there is now a strong demand for homes with a second or third bedroom that can be converted into an office to facilitate working from home, as well as a reasonably high-speed uncapped internet connection.”
4. Early investment
“The new phrase is ‘I don’t do retirement; I do life’, which is inspirational,” continued Barker. “Although the concept of retirement is becoming passé, most are looking at starting a new adventure by relocating to a secure estate. We’re also noting a number of younger investors coming through and renting out the property in the interim.”
5. Small towns as primary residence
“Most people looking for property on the KZN South Coast are looking for permanent residence, rather than holiday homes,” explained Evans.
This has largely been prompted by the ability to continue working remotely, and the desire to ‘live the holiday’ and benefit from more cost-effective living has seen such coastal areas rise in demand. As Barker said: “Really, if you can live and work anywhere, then why not choose a sea view and great quality of life over the busy city?”
Renishaw Hills, the Scottburgh-based mature lifestyle village, works into all the current property trends. Quality-built homes in a secure estate with ocean and forest views, access to nature trails, a sense of community and incredible value for money have attracted people looking to start a new adventure.