The news that the largest water park in South Africa is going to be built in the sleepy coastal town of Scottburgh on the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal will undoubtedly boost interest in the local property market.
Work on the Amazon Valley Water Park is due to start in January next year and is expected to be completed by December 2016. The park will incorporate 23 family slides, tube slides and wave rides. There will be 80 sites for caravans, as well as restaurants and numerous takeaway facilities.
Property in this area has traditionally been less expensive than that on the North Coast. However, Navi Chowthee, property consultant, RE/MAX Coast and Country, notes that prices continue to rise in the area. “With many proposed developments in and around the town in the near future, the increase in property prices is set to continue. The multimillion-rand water park development is sure to bring thousands of tourists to the area and will definitely increase the demand for property, which will, in turn, result in increased prices.”
Jeff Evans, principal at Tyson Properties Scottburgh, says that the town's proximity to Durban has started to play a significant role in recent years. “In addition to safe swimming beaches, a selection of terrific golf courses and great shopping facilities, the town boasts a country feel and is ideal for those who want to live in a quieter area and work in Durban.”
Lightstone statistics reveal that 80 transfers have taken place in the past 12 months. A total of 11 freehold and 40 sectional title properties have changed hands so far this year and, according to the stats, the average prices stand at R865,000 and R655,000 respectively. It’s worth noting, however, that eight of the properties that changed hands in this period sold for between R800,000 and R1,5m.
Evans says that although there was a high demand for second homes in the past, as a result of the poor economy, many of those owners have become sellers. The demand from those looking to settle in the area permanently has, however, remained constant.
On the other hand, Chowthee says properties are generally priced realistically. There is a good mix of buyers looking at both second homes and residential homes, Chowthee adds.