Tuesday, 29 January 2008

No Worries Mate - Home Loans Markets in S.A.

sweaping SA home loan rates cleanAhhh... Yes, we know you've been waiting....

Another power cut, another South African soccer team loss, another rain storm, another traffic jam, what NEXT?????

Another South African home loan rate increase? Can South Africa afford to pay 15% on a home loan account???? The answer is NO!

I do believe that the government in S.A(that's you Mr Mbeki in case you've forgotten or too scared to admit it with the current rising popularity in South Africa's government. For those of you who are international readers take a look at these two BLOGS for some light on topics in S.A. - http://southafrica.amagama.com & <>http://dearmrpresidentofsa.blogspot.com/)

can help South Africans and the South African home loans and property market as a whole, if Mr Mbeki takes a good bold stance and decides to drop the interest rates by 0.5% or even 0.75%. Something like this may not be great for inflation and current economic stability for the country, but I think what should be more of a worry for him is the morale in South Africa. By dropping our interest rates, I believe we can build the morale up again and in doing so, once again help the housing market which has taken such a beating over the last 4 months.

What do you think?

Friday, 25 January 2008

What you need to know to buy your first home

We all face this issue at one time or another in our lives, whether it is when you decide to move out of your parents house or when you decide to take that giant leap into marriage. It can also be one of the most unnerving experiences, especially when you don’t have a clue. So, I have decided to embark on a journey of discovery into the property market.

I found some very interesting suggestions, and yes I am going to share them with you, they are:
1) Contracts: For your first time you will need to organise a contract, and that includes one between the seller of the property and you, the home buyer, and secondly between the home buyer and a financial institution. I know what you’re thinking…PAPER WORK!!!! Unfortunately it is a necessity but with the use of a good Bond Originator this can be avoided.

2) Spousal contracts: There are different ways for this topic to be dealt with; it all depends if you are married, and if you are what type of contract you have. For instance, if you are married in community of property, both spouses must sign the contract, or if one signs it, then the other must have written consent from the other spouse. If you are married out of community of property, then you are two separate people, and only one needs to sign the contract, if only one of you is buying the property, otherwise both need to sign the contract.

3) Bonds and contracts: If you need bond finance to buy your first home the contract will show how long you have to apply to a financial institution and obtain the finance. If the application is turned down, there is no contract between you and the seller, but if you are granted the bond, within the time period that the contract shows, then there is a contract between you and the seller. Once that happens there is no way to cancel the contract without legal grounds.

4) Occupation of property: If you decide to take up occupation of the house before registration, most people agree to an occupational rental, which is to be paid until the date of registration.

5) Legal representatives: Generally there are two attorneys involved in the transfer process, the transfer attorney as well as a bond attorney. This may look as though you are incurring added costs, but that is not the case, you would need to pay for the transfer and bond registration anyway.

6) Transfer duties: At least there is some good news in this department, there are no transfer duties if you bought your house for less than R500 000.00. Unfortunately it does not mean that you don’t have to pay any costs, transfer duty is a tax exemption, but transfer costs still need to be paid.

7) Estate agents undertaking: When you buying a house for the first time estate agents know, so be very careful you don’t find a sly one. Draw up a sales contract just in case.

8) Bond conmen: There are some conmen out there, so beware. They could tell you that you can still get a bond even if the client is blacklisted.

9) Avoid verbal agreements: Do not rely on a verbal agreement when deciding on the sale; you are spending too much money not to do things properly. Also, there is no need to sign your sales contract immediately, first read through every word, and make sure you are happy.
So the few things I did learn, and I hope you noticed them too, is you are going to be signing a lot of paper work and spending a while drawing up contracts to suit your needs, also do not take any short-cuts; this is just going to end badly. And you are going to be spending a lot of money buying your dream home, but it’s worth it in the end.

Laiken Cullen (SA Property's Up and Coming Copywriter)

If you're looking for a good freelance copywriter (email me at )

With a little help from: http://www.myproperty.co.za/news/115593/REMAX_top_ten_tips_for_first_time_buyers.html

Monday, 21 January 2008


So did you hear .... Residential property price growth as measured by the Standard Bank median house price index was recorded at 0.0% year on year in December 2007. This must really make those sellers who want to make millions in selling houses very itchy indeed.

Lower volumes than past year-end experiences and an increase in the proportion of lower-priced homes in the book must have pulled the median house price downward. Must be the bite of Tito at work together with inflation, wild spending and blah blah

If we South Africans could be as diligent with our money as we are with throwing rubbish out of the car windows we would have an interest rate of 8.5% and inflation of 3% -........MMMMMMMm - had to stick this in as I'm so tired of seeing people litter- wheres the pride man!!!!

So, the median house price was stuck in the R550,000 to R620,000 range in 2007. 2008 could very easily see a single-digit growth, lets say between 2% and 5%. This would be something especially for house buyers.

Maybe now we will see some decent developments at under R 1m for younger folks and not little hell holes vs palaces. Who knows we may just find a great developer who's margins are slightly less but offers all the great bells and whistles! Who knows!!

Maybe its time to start bargaining for better prices????????

Lets see..what pops out the wood works.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Pretoria Real Estate - Property in Pretoria Sucks!

PretoriaApartment living. It's all over! It's been around for years and that's where real estate and property world is going and has been for the last 300 years! Over the last 2 years I've travelled from New York to Toronto, from Hamburg to London and from the South of France to Rome and condos and apartments are the way of living.

Pretoria on the other hand, the capital of South Africa and the most beautiful city in South Africa are on a par with India as far as I'm concerned and it's really starting to grate my cheese...

We have 3 universities in Pretoria. It's a student town and there are loads of young people living here. Yet, we insist on building face brick houses in security complexes. PEOPLE, DEVELOPERS IN SOUTH AFRICA AND PRETORIA:
Face brick security complexes selling for R800 000.00 is not going to satisfy the young entrepeneurs or the students in this city!!! When will you realise this...

My goal this year is to build awareness in the Property market in South Africa and we're going to start with Real Estate in Pretoria because it's my home town.

We need apartments, nice, fully equipped modern apartments for single youngsters and young couples. Surely we can build nice apartments and sell them for under R800 000.00 an apartment.

I can tell you now, from working in the home loans industry for close to a year now that the average Pretorian looking for comfortable living and looking to get into the property market cannot afford more than R650 000.00 bond with our current interest rates being 14.5%. This is what's missing here right now!!

So to all you developers in Pretoria I'm telling YOU! THIS IS WHERE THE MONEY IS!!!

Drop the face brick, drop the simplex living with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and absorb the way of the FUTURE!!!


Monday, 14 January 2008

The Bond Originator from Hell - Part 1

7.59AM - the phone rings and the THE VOICE screams....Are you a moron!!!! I said I wanted -2% below prime, are you ...$#5#7&&* deaf. If I had dialed 911 in new York I would have got better service from you, you, you,.... useless bond originator from hell!!!!

.....and here I was just finished a delish best in the west cappuccino from TriBeca at Brooklyn Square aligning myself with this new days energies!! Boom, with a scramble I looked at the file and saw that a rate of -1.85% below prime was the deal at 100% loan to value and on vacant land. Man had I really screwed up!!!

So sucking in my ripped to shred manhood (Yes, I am a man!) I called my red faced, blood pressured client and gently told him....in my best and most polite English (Yes, I am an English Man!) to go get knotted.

So, here's the truth manne!!!!!!!

Whatever rate you get today, you can improve on all the time as you pay your bond - just go and ask regularly at your branch for a better rate. (Even if the bank does not value your relationship, you can value theirs!!)

The bigger your investment out of your pocket, the better your rate. (You see size does count!)

If you use your bond as a current account, then you actually dont want a great rate??????????????? UHM?

Tuesday, 8 January 2008

The Transfer Process (You the Buyer)

Welcome to 2008. I'm pleased to announce that I've managed to get off my lazy butt and now I'm ready to entertain. I wasn't too sure what kind of article to start 2008 off on and I thought I'd start it with the question we were asked most this December.

What is the process behind a transfer of deed sale. I.E. When I buy your property, what's the process behind the scenes that changes the property details from your name to my name.

It is the estate agent's responsibility to ensure a superior performance in the process of the marketing, sale and transfer of the property in the Deeds Office is performed by a conveyancer. A professional estate agent needs to understand the basic conveyancing procedures performed by the conveyancer.


The term "conveyancing" describes the legal process whereby a person, close corporation, company or trust becomes registered and lawful owner of fixed property and ensures that such ownership cannot be challenged.

The conveyancer is a person who has passed the national conveyancing examination. By law this is the only person who can register fixed property transfers.

The seller usually appoints the conveyancer in the transfer process. This appointment can be negotiated between the parties of sale agreements. You'll very often find that when using a bond originator, it's often best to ask them which attorneys they suggest as they generally manage to get discounted rates with selected attorney panels. Make sure that the estate agent does not force you into using their attorneys. Chat to the seller and come to some sort of agreement. After all it is you the buyer that is paying the transfer fees and not the seller.

Agreement of Sale

The first step in the process of property transfer is to ensure the existence of the Offer to Purchase or Agreements of Sale. This means a valid contract between you the buyer and the seller. A written Offer to Purchase signed by a purchaser and accepted by the seller, after all suspense conditions have been fulfilled, constitutes a binding DEED OF SALE. Oral contracts do not stand.

Conveyancing Procedures

On receipt of the signed Deed of Sale, the conveyancer will conduct the following procedures:

1. Conduct a Deeds office search to verify the details of the property
2. Prepare the documentation that the seller and you the purchaser will need to sign

3. Liaise with the municipality for valuation certificates and rates clearance forms
4. Electrical Certificates
5. Purchasers (your) bond instructions which they will receive from the bank


All costs relating to the transfer of fixed property need to be paid prior to registration of transfer and will include the following:

Transfer Duty
Value Added Tax
Rates and Levies
Conveyancing Fees
Bond Registration Costs
Bond Cancellation Costs

Deeds Office Procedures

The conveyancer will lodge the documents they have prepared with the Deeds Office for registration. If there is a mortgage bond to be registered, or a bond to be cancelled, the conveyancers attending to the registration thereof will lodge their documentation simultaneously with the transfer documentation.

Two examiners in the Deeds Office will then examine the documentation to ensure that they comply with all the relevant legislation and regulations. If all the documents are found to be in order and ready for registration they are executed by the conveyancer approximately eight working days after lodged in the Deeds Office.

On registration the purchaser becomes the lawful owner of the property, Approximately one month after registration the Deeds Office releases the Title Deed reflecting the new ownership, which in turn is passed on to the new owner. If a mortgage bond was registered the Title Deed is retained by the financial institution.


The period of time it takes to register a transfer depends on the cooperation of each party involved. Most transfers if everything runs smoothly happens within 6 - 8 weeks.

That's the end of our first article for 2008. I hope you all enjoyed it.
WizardMan Out!

A Debt Free South Africa for All...