We round up the leading developers working on exciting projects who are invigorating the market with their game-changing energy
WORDS: ATLEHANG RAMATHESELE
In a market that currently favours first-time buyers and property investors, game-changing developers are making impactful strides to meet the demand, particularly in the residential sector. Between record sales and constant innovation and agility in an ever-changing market, the general sentiment seems to indicate a positive market outlook – with exciting upcoming projects to match.
Enjoying a successful year, including 15 active developments currently for sale and a few more in the pipeline due to launch later this year – Craft Homes offers a vast range of developments, their most common being two to four-bedroom duplex homes in sectional title properties in a range of great areas at affordable prices. These turnkey property developers have been making a tremendous impact and this is largely due to keeping a close eye on the market. Jessica Cabanita, Marketing Manager for Craft Homes, explains that while it was initially quite an adjustment and challenge to digitise their sales processes to accommodate some of the limitations imposed by the various lockdowns, they have now sold 1,500 homes purely online.
Craft Homes online sales performance has been stellar of late. “We launched a development in Broadacres with 84 freestanding houses all around the R2m mark, we sold all 84 homes in 65 minutes- all online without a brick laid on site. On June 24, 18 freestanding homes in Bryanston at an average of R2.5m all sold out in six minutes. ” says Cabanita. Craft Homes’ formula has been to research the market effectively and respond accordingly. Cabanita believes that having the right prices in the right locations and ensuring that they are actually building what they have sold is one of the keys to their success. “We make sure that the end product looks exactly like the renders,” she says.
Hot Property – Apartment building The Terrace (featuring 2-3 bedroom luxury apartments) within a Sandton precinct, Sandton Gate, selling from R1,8m. Construction has started and occupation is October 2022.
Rabie Property Group
Rabie Property Group has had a dynamic development portfolio, one of the most significant being the establishment of Century City in Cape Town. Alongside Century City Property Owners’ Association, it has become a smart city and is indeed a game changer. Director Miguel Rodrigues says that they have been holistically ensuring that it is a world class place to work, live and play, “Since becoming the main developers in the early 2000s, we’ve been able to incorporate beautiful living spaces across various residential developments, an office and leisure precinct where our Century City Conference Centre and Hotel spills out onto an urban square surrounded by offices and restaurants and much more,” he says. They are also currently working on the redevelopment of Ratanga Junction. “We’re creating an expansive water body with several islands and green space, surrounded by phased developments of different residential offerings. The first of the developments overlooking the water body is Bridgewater One, a mixed- use scheme which includes a hotel, apartments, offices and retail, he says. They will also be including a retirement development as part of this offering. Their retirement brand Oasis Life and lifestyle estate Clara Anna Fontein continue to gain traction.
Rodrigues believes that people tend to buy where they see value, so he remains positive about the market and is excited about the projects in the pipeline. They have also seen good results from rapid adoption of digital property shopping. One of their key successes is their emphasis on creating an entire living experience. “Homes are where people live, dream and grow. We want to make sure we produce quality homes that allow their inhabitants to thrive and love where they live. It’s for this reason that we think that there is always a market to sell to,” explains Rodrigues. They are also positive about their developments that are exclusively for rental, as while there has been some strain on the rental market, it remains a viable sector.
(Rabie Property Group)
- Their two residential developments on the market are doing really well, with only a few apartments left for sale prior to completion.
- Century City resales have had a great year.
- The development in Burgundy Estate launched digitally in October 2020 – with 60% of the scheme selling out in the first week.
- The R1m to R2m price band is very active, especially with the “younger” first-time buyers.
It has been well documented that the reduction of the interest rate last year, among other factors, led to a surge in the first-time buyer sector of the property market. The affordable housing market, therefore, enjoyed a spike in sales. As one of the foremost developers in that sphere, Cosmopolitan Projects has been creating comfortable and connected living and full-title housing developments. Head of Communications, Alda Erasmus, says that this has a beyond favourable sales season for them, “Last year was our best year ever. 2021 has also been performing well. We have not seen a significant slowdown and continue to see good results,” she says. With an emphasis on providing connecting cities with an array of lifestyle amenities across Johannesburg and Tshwane, they have been at the helm of new affordable housing developments- some of which are mega mixed, use projects and lifestyle estates.
One of the most notable is Sky City, situated near Alberton in the south of Johannesburg, a huge development with immediate access to education and child care facilities, retail and recreation that includes jogging trails and soccer fields, starting at R603,000 per month. The development also has fibre available and units come with a solar geyser. The affordable housing sector continues to boom and demand exceeds the supply, “There are only a few developers in this sector due to the huge operational and delivery constraints to overcome with contractors, suppliers, councils, deeds offices, commercial banks and development finance to deliver affordable full-title houses,” says Erasmus.