Thinking of buying or selling a property after lockdown?

Living 24/7 in your home under lockdown for several weeks may either make you fall more in love with your abode – or decide to find another place that better suits your needs. If you are planning to sell your home the moment the Deeds Office reopens, the good news is that there will be greater opportunities to buy your dream home in your preferred area.

“People’s priorities, needs or financial status may have changed since the lockdown began,” says Dean Hewitt, co-founder, director and principal of Nu Generation Homes. “They may want space for a permanent home office or a garden. Some might want to move closer to family, work or public amenities, while others may want a self-contained, lock-up-and-go home in a security estate. Having had the time to think, they too may have decided to put their home on the market.”


“Also, homes that were on the market before the lockdown will probably still be up for sale,” he says. “With greater choice available, you may find exactly what you are looking for.”


Lower interest payments


The low prime lending rate makes buying a home more affordable. Now at 7,5%, the prime lending rate is at its lowest level in years after four cuts in the past 12 months. This includes a 1% cut on 15 April 2020. “It’s unlikely that we’ll see a rate hike too in the near future,” says Dean. “Rather, the Reserve Bank has capacity for even more cuts, based on the outlook for inflation.”


To illustrate how the lower rate could benefit your pocket, the monthly interest on a home loan of R1 million, granted at the prime lending rate, should be R628 lower than in May last year. For a R2 million home loan, the saving should be R1 256.


“Furthermore, we believe the favourable lending climate from before the lockdown is likely to continue, as banks compete for business. This will enable home buyers to secure a good interest rate on their home loan. With all these savings, you may be able to buy to a bigger home or move into a more established area without pushing your monthly home loan repayments beyond your allocated budget,” says Hewitt.


“If you are planning to downscale, you could end up with a lower monthly repayment on your new home loan. Alternatively, if you can buy your new home outright with the proceeds of the sale of your current home, you’ll have no monthly repayment at all.”


Transfer duty thresholds adjusted


Following recent adjustments to the transfer duty threshold, homes with a lower price tag have also become more affordable. If you purchase a home for R1 million or less, you are not liable for transfer duty. For homes purchased for R1,375 million or less, the transfer duty is 3% of the value above R1 million.


“While this makes buying a home more attractive for first time property buyers, homeowners who wish to downscale could also save,” says Dean.


Nu Generation Homes also helps homeowners get a good deal when they decide to sell. “We provide free home valuations using a comparative market analysis tool to advise you on a realistic, market-related price for your home. We also charge a fixed fee for our services instead of traditional estate agent commission, which saves home sellers thousands of rands.”


“Our service includes top-notch marketing with managed showhouses and viewings. We also help organise compliance certificates for home sellers. In addition, our good working relationship with BSM Attorneys ensures that the legal aspects of a property transfer are hassle free for our clients.”


If you are planning to sell your home, or would like to buy a new home, please contact Nu Generation Homes for a free valuation and professional property related advice.

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