Ten years of selling Vaal River Properties: Trends and Fluctuations
Annalien Realty started selling leisure properties on the Vaal River ten years ago - mainly around Vanderbijlpark. Today we have river properties on our books from as far afield as Bothaville in the west and the Vaal Dam in the East; that is a strectch of almost 300 km of river in total!
Over the years we have witnessed tremendous changes, not only in the leisure property market, but also changes in the Vaal River community as a whole. I remember when we started our website way back in 2003 (quite a ground breaking feat for those years, by the way!) the maximum price we had in our search field was R6 000 000. Since then we had to change the maximum price twice and already it is outdated again at R15.5 mill. - that alone tells you a lot about what happened to Vaal River property prices. It does not tell the whole story, however. It does not tell the story of those in-between-years (2005 – 2007) when the prices of river properties rose almost on a monthly basis! I remember how we shuddered every time somebody asked us to come and evaluate their property, because the prices were changing so drastically, almost overnight, and we battled to keep up.
Those were heady days. A bit frightening though, because we did not know where it all was going to end. And then it did stop, thank goodness, and here is the wonderful thing about river properties – although the property market took a tumble in general, on the river the prices never really dropped, it just stabilised and maybe corrected itself a bit (let’s be honest, some folk really did go overboard in their expectations!)
As far as the river community is concerned, we also saw tremendous changes starting around 2001. It was roughly the time when developers started discovering the untapped potential of this area for leisure purposes. In ten years we personally witnessed at least eighteen new river housing developments just on the Vanderbijlpark/Vereeniging stretch of river. That is a total of, at least, 1100 new houses and units that were built or are still being constructed! Most of these new gated developments are small (10 to 20 units) due to the strict rules regarding development on the river.
In my next blog post I am going to highlight more changes to the Vaal River scenario expected to happen in the near future. In the mean time remember this: even though the river lifestyle is growing in popularity amongst city folk, the supply will always be limited, and in my books that constitutes a recipe for good investments, so call us if you want to sell or buy!