Monday, March 27, 2006

The South African property market has gone moggy..

It's official. I am now convinced that this market has gone absolutely moggy. Since selling up in Cape Town, bye-bye sea view, bye-bye million knots per hour south-easter, we, the good mrs & I, have been scouring the wad of newsprint that arrives with each Saturday Star. For nearly 5 months we have been looking for a new house, and hard, and with no success. Nothing extravagant: 3 beds, double garage, bit of garden and maybe a bit of character and a stoep to enjoy the odd Hansa. We've wasted countless Sunday afternoons trailing from showhouse to showhouse from Parkhurst to Jukskei Park. We've nearly got divorced over this house hunting thing as we both absolutely hate renting. Especially in the FortKnox grey walled cluster thingy we are currently staying in (remember the sea view damn it!).

Finally this weekend we saw the ultimate dive in the least trendy of suburbs, Bordeaux. We were nearly ill on entering this place owned by a pair of cat breeders, the house encaged in wire mesh and home to at least 20 rare cat breeds and in dire need of a serious overhaul if not demolition. It struck me that demolition might be the only way to get rid of the stench of cat urine. Anyway after a night's sleep we decided it was actually worth a second look, and that being aware that we are a rare couple that could visualise something decent through the mist of catpiss, we should perhaps consider a lowball offer. A phone call to the agent, however, put paid to this. They received 2 offers on showday, one for full asking price and one for even more. That is it! There is now no way that I am buying a property at the apex of this market. When all these thousands of cloned toytown houses in the North all come onto the market this market is going to dive. I'm leaving my cash in the bank or maybe in a gold ETF, and will take the risk of marital tension that this brings.

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